Fenton, MI — December 4, 2019
With one week to go until the College Football Playoff Selection Committee names the four teams that will participate in this year’s Championship tournament, the field of potential contenders has become clearer. Ohio State defeated Michigan 56-27 to earn a spot in the Big 10 Championship Game and, for this week, retain their number one ranking by the committee.
The Top Ranked Teams
A win versus Wisconsin in Indianapolis next Saturday by the Buckeyes will likely lock up the #1 seed in the four-team playoff. Should the 8th ranked Badgers pull off the upset of the season they could slip into the #4 spot. It is unlikely the committee would rank Ohio State ahead of a team that just defeated them.
Second-ranked LSU faces 4th ranked Georgia in the SEC Championship game. The winner earns a playoff spot, the loser likely gets a top bowl invitation. Third-ranked Clemson takes on 23rd ranked Virginia with the Tigers needing a win to hold onto their position in the Top 4.
Fifth-ranked Utah will play in the PAC-10 Championship game against 13th ranked Oregon hoping a win will allow them to replace either LSU or Georgia in the playoff picture. Sitting on the outside and hoping for a fortunate series of events to occur, 6th ranked Oklahoma and 7th ranked Baylor battle it out in the Big 12 Championship game.
Fifth-ranked Alabama was the biggest loser of the week, after falling to Auburn 48-45 the Crimson Tide fell to 12th in this week’s rankings.
For the 8th straight year, Michigan came up short against their interstate rival Ohio State. The Wolverines entered “The Game” ranked 13th, despite the loss they only dropped one position in the Top 25 rankings and are in the mix for an invitation to the Citrus Bowl with the possible opponent for the Auburn Tigers.
The Outback, Holiday, and Gator Bowls have also expressed interest in the Wolverines. Saturday’s conference championship games hold the keys to most of the top Bowl invitations.
After trailing Maryland for much of the 2nd half, Michigan State pulled out a 19-16 win to become Bowl eligible. Four field goals by Spartan kicker Matt Coghlin, including the game-winner with 2:14 remaining in the fourth quarter proved to be the difference.
Michigan State is likely staying close to home this Bowl season with an invitation to the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit their most likely destination. The outside possibility of a trip to New York City for the Pin Stripe bowl would be reward considering the Spartans lost 5 of the last 7 games on their schedule.
Courtesy of the NCAA