Washington State (8-1)
The Path to the College Football Playoff: It’s still on the table. For this to work, Wazzu has to get by at Colorado, Arizona, Washington, and then win the Pac-12 championship – but that wouldn’t be enough.
Notre Dame has to lose. If it doesn’t that means it’ll have beaten USC in the final game of the regular season – the Trojans beat Washington State back in September.
It’ll also be a must for the Big 12 and/or Big Ten champion to have two losses – it wouldn’t get in over a one-loss Clemson or one-loss SEC champion, and/or it would be great if Alabama rolled to 13-0, knocking out everyone else in the SEC.
What Will Happen: Washington State will get past Colorado and Arizona, but Washington will win the Apple Cup and take the Pac-12 North to ruin the potential of a dream season.
The Path to the College Football Playoff: And that settles it. The dominant 29-0 win over Alabama all but seals the the spot in the College Football Playoff. The Tide are good enough to to rip through the next four games to take the title, but even at 12-1, the committee will put it in with or without an SEC Championship on a Four Best Team Theory.
What Will Happen: Don’t be stunned if the Tide get pushed a wee bit by Mississippi State or Auburn, or even lose to Georgia. But they’ll find their way to 13-0 and the No. 1 seed.
The Path to the College Football Playoff: And now Georgia knows exactly what it has to do. Beat Auburn, beat UMass, beat Georgia Tech, win the SEC Championship over Alabama, be no worse than the No. 3 seed. It might be possible to be No. 1 depending on whether or not Clemson and Notre Dame lose, but whatever … win out, get in. Don’t win out, don’t get in.
What Will Happen: Watch out for Auburn to make it a fight and potentially screw things up, but nah … the Bulldogs will get their shot at Alabama for the title. The’ll be great, they’ll prove that they’re one of the four best teams in college football, and they’ll just miss out.