March 20, 2018

Kirk Herbstreit explains how Alabama can still make the Playoff

30 November 2017, 12:52 | Ken Black

When College Football Playoff rankings are released, Alabama could be in uncharted waters

COLUMBIA SC- NOVEMBER 25 Kelly Bryant #2 of the Clemson Tigers reacts after his team scores a touchdown against the South Carolina Gamecocks during their game at Williams Brice Stadium

The top four teams in the final rankings will make the College Football Playoff.

Nevertheless, the second-to-last rankings were revealed Tuesday, with Georgia checking in at No. 6. You beat Ohio State, you're in the playoff.

Clemson has a victory over six of the top eight teams since 2013 and has won the last meeting it has had against Auburn, Oklahoma, Alabama, Miami (FL) and Ohio State.

Clemson is back at the top of college football. With conference title hardware on its side this year, Ohio State would be able to make a strong case.

Clemson is now No. 1 in all three polls.

It has had to make its mere seven wins against Power Five teams count, and that it has, throttling both Georgia and Alabama, the only two teams to rank No. 1 so far this season. Alabama is the only team in that group not playing in its conference championship game. Let's say Oklahoma wins and takes the third spot along with the SEC and ACC champs. Alabama and Miami were atop the rankings last week, but the Crimson Tide lost the Iron Bowl to Auburn and the Hurricanes dropped a meaningless trap game at Pittsburgh.

Dabo Swinney's bunch has wins over Auburn, Virginia Tech, NC State and SC, with a really bad loss against Syracuse.

Alabama football needs help to make the Playoff field for the fourth straight season.

The rest of the top 10 consists of No. 7 Miami (11-1), No. 8 Ohio State (10-2), No. 9 Penn State (10-2) and No. 10 Southern Cal (10-2). They got a lot of flak for it a year ago, especially after Ohio State got crushed by Clemson. It is important to remember that the committee's protocol states when teams are similar conference titles should be used as essentially a tiebreaker.

Three quick steals, one by Mahoney and two by Jonathan Dalton led to an Isaiah Gable layup, a Justin Carpenter dunk and a Daniel Simmons three-point play and Southeast Missouri State was up 61-46 with 10 minutes left. Georgia would end the year 12-1 as the SEC champion, which qualifies as a virtual lock in the playoff era coming out of this conference.

Clemson also will face Miami for the ACC title and Oklahoma faces No. 11 TCU for the Big 12 title. The Tigers won't get in over the Hurricanes, but if Wisconsin or Oklahoma loses, Clemson could be part of the conversation with Alabama and/or Ohio State.

If Oklahoma wins, it's in.

Peach Bowl: No. 6 Georgia vs. The other Orange Bowl spot goes to the highest-ranked team from the Southeastern Conference or Big Ten not in the playoff.

"The Selection Committee had questions as to are they as balanced of a team as some others that are ranked just above them, and we analyzed their schedule, have they really been tested on the defensive side of the ball this year, and if so, by who, and based on that conversation, we ranked them in that 14th spot this week", Hocutt said. The Badgers have played through the criticism and set the stage for their entry to the playoff under one simple condition; win and they're in.

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