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Is the Committee Right?

Austin Darrow  l CNBNewsnet


Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Washington (in that order) capture the four spots for the College Football Playoff. Alabama was a lock at No. 1, but did the committee get the rest right?

A lot of criticism has been thrown at the committee the past few weeks, because of how they’ve managed their rankings. We’ve seen Washington get put into the four spot for a week, before losing to the red hot USC Trojans (who will face Penn St. in the Rose Bowl).

The committee has this criteria to determine who gets in and who shouldn’t, but in reality they only go off of wins and losses. Think about it, last week’s rankings went entirely by wins and losses:

  1. Alabama (12-0)
  2. Ohio St. (11-1)
  3. Clemson (11-1)
  4. Washington (11-1)
  5. Michigan (10-2)
  6. Wisconsin (10-2)
  7. Penn St. (10-2)

That’s how the committee decided last week’s rankings, and they did the same this week. All the zero and one loss teams make the playoffs, while the two loss teams get an A for effort.

It bothers a lot of college football fans that Washington and Ohio St. got in.

Ohio St. didn’t make Big Ten Championship game, but their only loss is to the Big Ten champ, Penn St., and they beat Michigan in double OT. While Ohio St. didn’t make the championship game their wins were more appealing than anyone else’s in the country.

They beat four top-25 teams, all of which were in the top-10 at the time they played them. They have the quality wins to compete as one of the top four teams in the playoff.

Washington on the other hand was a coin toss. The number four spot in the playoff has been up for debate for weeks now, and now that Washington secures it, people are scratching their heads.

Washington like Ohio St. has one loss, but won their conference in a beat down on Colorado. The first time Washington was ranked at number four, they played USC that week and it was considered the “eye test,” to see if Washington was really as good as their record said.

Washington took the loss to USC and was knocked out of the number four spot until today. Washington’s out of conference schedule was terrible. The three non-conference opponents they faced were Rutgers, Portland St. and Idaho.

That’s not an appealing non-conference schedule for a team trying to get into the playoff. Washington did have quality wins against opponents who were ranked in the top-25 at the time. That is why they got in over Penn St.

Penn State’s case is a tough one to make. They had two losses on the season (Pittsburgh and Michigan).

The Pitt loss may seem bad, but isn’t as bad as it looks. They went on the road to Pitt, and Pitt went to Clemson and handed them their only loss of the season. Meanwhile, Pitt ended with four losses, but two of which were against teams in the top-25 (Virginia Tech and UNC) and were within a field goal.

The Michigan loss was a bad one for Penn St. since they got routed on the road at Michigan. You can make the argument that Penn State’s defense was banged up and they played walk-ons, but the offense was non-existent.

Since that loss Penn St. went on a nine game winning streak and won the Big Ten championship over Wisconsin. Penn St. did have a stronger non-conference schedule with Temple (AAC Champ), Kent St. and Pitt.

Had Washington not win by the margin they did against Colorado (41-10), than I think Penn St. gets the number four spot for the playoff.

The committee states that conference championship is a part of the criteria, yet Penn St. just won the toughest conference in football and got no respect from it. So now that just says a conference championship means nothing to get into the playoff.

The committee still didn’t get the rankings right. The job is to put the four BEST teams in the top four and they got two in there (Alabama & Ohio St.).

Clemson and Washington are both frauds. Clemson lost to Pitt and battled a terrible NC State.

The four BEST teams in the nation are Alabama, Ohio St., Michigan and USC.

USC started out at 1-3, but has since matured and become a contender, but their three losses will gain zero respect from the committee.

Michigan blew out the Big Ten champ, took Ohio St. to double OT at Ohio St. and lost. Michigan will now play in a less meaningful bowl game, and most likely dominate.

The committee made their choices and we’ll see how it plays out, but I believe they got it wrong.