Tide to play Huskies; Buckeyes to face Clemson

If there is pressure, it is on the selection committee.

So does that mean every answer was a wrong one? “It’s been the funnest team I’ve had to coach, the most committed team, the most focused”. But Oklahoma rallied to win nine straight, including wins over ranked opponents in West Virginia and Oklahoma State, putting the Sooners back into the playoff conversation by year’s end.

As in the Playoff rankings, the Crimson Tide are followed by Ohio State, Clemson and Washington.

So it seems that PSU, 11-2 and the Big Ten champion, really had no chance to break into the CFP for the first time once the Huskies won the PAC-12 and Clemson the ACC. Alabama was No.1 in the final rankings, Clemson No. 2, Ohio State No. 3, and Washington No. 4.

Still, this is a risky team that has earned its spot in the playoff. Unfortunately, the Playoff has just four spots. That might be true, but the Nittany Lions defensive front proved Penn State wasn’t overmatched by the Buckeyes.

The committee stayed with the same top four it picked going into championship weekend, leaving out No. 5 Penn State even though the Nittany Lions won the Big Ten title game and beat Ohio State earlier in the season. Even if Wisconsin limited Penn State to three points, it would have preserved its three-score advantage.

Penn State, following their win in the Big Ten title game, jumped ahead of MI into the fifth spot and the Wolverines dropped to sixth. Those are two sterling wins on any resume. However, it’s hard to argue that Ohio State isn’t one of the top Power Five teams in the nation. Penn State had two losses while the others had one or zero.

And then there’s MI, which seemed to be held to a standard Ohio State was not. Washington also sports a bonafide giant-slaying coach in Chris Petersen, whose Boise State squad felled Adrian Peterson and Oklahoma in the unforgettable 2007 Fiesta Bowl. Las Vegas thinks those teams will be Alabama and Ohio State.

Ohio State’s position at No. 3 has been questioned for a couple of different reasons. Clemson is still without a top-10 win this season. So we’ve had some things we had to overcome, but this has been a team that was focused from day one.

Minutes after the College Football Playoff matchups were announced Sunday afternoon, Las Vegas sportsbook operator CG Technology installed Alabama as an 11-point favorite over Washington.

The playoff is a million times better than the BCS, but still well short of as good as it could be. That can be argued.

MI started the year 9-0 with convincing wins over Colorado and Penn State, as well as a slugfest win over Wisconsin, 14-7. Can Deshaun Watson and the Tigers finish the job this time around after falling to Alabama in the national championship game last season? Penn State played Pitt, Temple and Kent State out of conference. You just can’t fit six teams into a four-team Playoff.

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