Let’s Talk the College Football Playoff Selection

Earlier today, the college football playoff selection committee gathered together and made the final decision of which four teams should be in the college football playoffs.  Really only one decision had to be made, as the first three teams were already decided by their dominant, undefeated seasons.  But the one decision that centered around the 4th and final spot came with a lot of disagreement from college football fans everywhere.  After Alabama, Clemson, and Notre Dame in the first three spots, the committee released the decision to the public around 12:30 p.m. today that the Oklahoma Sooners would fill that 4th spot.

Photo Cred: Sports Illustrated

Photo Cred: Sports Illustrated

The decision ultimately came down to three teams: the Oklahoma Sooners, Georgia Bulldogs, and Ohio State Buckeyes, although some believed the UCF Knights should have also been in that discussion.  Let’s start with Ohio State.  The Buckeyes landed in the 6th overall spot after Oklahoma and Georgia, so the final discussion of who should take the 4th spot didn’t even include them.  Even though their fans will argue till their death they should’ve been picked, the committee got it right by not including them.  Ohio State went 12-1 overall and 8-1 in the Big Ten, which is very impressive.  The main problem for Ohio State was the fact that their one loss was a worse loss than Oklahoma’s one loss.  Ohio State lost to an unranked Purdue team by 29 points, while Oklahoma’s one loss came to #19 Texas by only three points.  Another problem for Ohio State was their struggles with mediocre teams such as Nebraska and Maryland where they looked pretty bad in ugly wins.  Those type of games definitely didn’t bode well for the “eye test.”  To me, the final spot should have come down to Ohio State and Oklahoma, and when you compare their similar schedules, the one loss was a lot worse for Ohio State than it was for Oklahoma.

Next comes the Georgia Bulldogs.  Many people were highly upset that they didn’t get selected, but c’mon, they blew their shot last night.  If they would have been selected, they would have had to play Alabama again, and fans don’t want to see that again.  They had their chance at Bama, and blew it.  They shouldn’t get another one.  Now for their biggest argument…are they one of the best four teams in the country?  I absolutely think they are.  But are they deserving of that final playoff spot?  Nope.  There’s a difference between the “best” teams and the most “deserving” teams.  The great thing about college football is every regular season game carries so much weight that it’s almost like the playoffs all year long.  As good as Georgia is, they aren’t deserving because they lost to LSU and Alabama, and didn’t even win their conference.  Tough luck Bulldog fans, but you can’t lose one of those games.

Out of these three teams, Oklahoma was absolutely the right choice.  Their only loss was to a good Texas team by three points on a neutral site.  And they revenged that loss with a win against the Longhorns yesterday to become Big 12 Conference champions.  So what they don’t play defense?  They have the best offense in the country with one of the best quarterbacks in the country.  As far as the eye test goes, they are better than Ohio State.  I would love to see an Oklahoma-Georgia game, however.  But overall the Sooners were the most deserving of the three mentioned teams.

I’ve already made my case for UCF getting the final playoff spot.  They also won their conference and haven’t lost a game in two years.  So if you want to talk “deserving,” then who is more deserving than the Knights?  What else do they have to do?  They’re penalized for playing in a non-Big Five conference and that’s it.  So I have to ask the question of what every other team playing outside the Big Five conferences are even playing their seasons for.  They will NEVER have a shot at a title, if UCF isn’t given that shot this year.