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Published: Fri, December 02, 2016
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Ohio State holds firm to 2nd in CFP rankings


Yes, it is possible.

It looks like not only does the committee not mind putting one Big Ten team without a conference championship in the playoff, but it is also comfortable with two. That's incorrect, because there is a path for MI, but not one that they control.

The circumstances are very different, but just two seasons ago, in the first year of the playoff, Ohio State leap-frogged both TCU and Baylor in the last rankings to take the fourth spot after a lopsided victory in the Big Ten championship game. We now look forward to championship weekend and beyond that, the College Football Playoff.

Hocutt said if things get close, the committee will fall back on its four metrics to decide standings: conference champions, head-to-head, strength of schedule and record against common opponents. And that doesn't even take into account the true freshmen and sophomores who aren't ranked because they aren't yet draft eligible - many of whom are essential cogs for UW. But what if they don't?

When the College Football Playoff was first announced, the rallying cry among pundits and fans was, "Finally, things will be settled on the field".

If Clemson and Washington both lose, it's unlikely either school earns a playoff spot. Penn State has won eight straight and has beaten its last five opponents by an average of 30.8 points.MI finished third in the Big Ten East and has dropped two of its last three to Ohio State and Iowa. "Right now, as our rankings show this week, the selection committee believes as of this week that Ohio State is No. 2 and that Penn State is still sitting in that seventh spot". No. 6 Wisconsin is the Rose Bowl. Eight straight wins, including an upset over Ohio State, helped to propel them into the Big Ten Championship this weekend against Wisconsin.

Therefore, Clemson is a virtual lock to make the CFP if they win the ACC Championship.

The topic of a Big Ten champion perhaps being left out has been a topic of debate for the last few weeks.

Here is a situation where the head to head becomes relevant. Wins and conference championships for one-loss Clemson and Washington. That is a blowout, and that alone can prove UM is more deserving than PSU.

Rounding out the top 10 are Wisconsin, Penn State, Colorado, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. Penn State would get in the playoff barring an unbelievable act by the playoff committee.

The Buckeyes beat No. 3 MI in double overtime on Saturday, and even though they won't be in the Big Ten Championship Game due to their loss to Penn State, no other Big Ten school is more deserving of a playoff spot. Half the field would be teams that failed to even reach their conference's championship game let alone win it. MI and Ohio State would be richly rewarded for earlier failure by not having to risk another loss against a top team in Indianapolis.

It's no secret that the Worldwide Sports Leader's ratings have seen a precipitous drop the last couple of years, thus making it all the more important that they produce a playoff that is as much of a victor off the field as well as on it.

FiveThirtyEight.com puts Michigan's playoff chances at 35 percent. And I am not mad about that.

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