College Football Playoff, bowl projections: Alabama locks up No. 1, opens door for Oklahoma
The College Football Playoff bowl games have been set, but how will the rest of the bowls pan out?
We now know the four teams in the College Football Playoff field. Alabama, Clemson and Notre Dame all earned the top three seeds as expected with Oklahoma checking in at No. 4 after avenging its lone loss of the season in the Big 12 Championship Game. Georgia, which picked up its second loss in the defeat by Bama, is out of the field, as is Big Ten champion Ohio State after defeating Northwestern to win the Big Ten Championship Game.
The Bulldogs, despite having an argument as one of the four best teams, did not win their conference and have two losses on their resume. Note that there was never any reason to believe AAC champion UCF would be part of this equation under any circumstance. It was just as unlikely that Georgia would fall behind the Knights, let alone Oklahoma or Ohio State -- despite UCF's big win.
The only debate that remained entering Sunday was whether the Alabama-Oklahoma semifinal would take place at the location closest for the Tide, which is Arlington, Texas, or in Miami. Many think that playing in Texas would end up creating a home crowd for the Sooners. The CFP Selection Committee agreed, putting the Tide-Sooners game in Miami. Let's take a look at the College Football Playoff along with my projections for the New Year's Six and the rest of the bowl games.
2019 College Football Playoff
|Date||Game / Loc.||Time / TV||Matchup||Prediction|
|Title game|| Semifinal winners|
(1) Alabama vs. (4) Oklahoma
(2) Clemson vs. (3) Notre Dame
Selection committee bowl games
|Date||Bowl / Loc.||Time / TV||Matchup||Prediction|
SEC vs. Big 12
| Georgia vs. Texas|
Big Ten vs. Pac-12
|Ohio State vs. Washington|
At-large vs. At-large
|LSU vs. UCF|
At-large vs. At-large
|Florida vs. Michigan|
There were few changes based on the results of Saturday's games since mostly favorites won. One change involved the Mountain West, where Fresno State upset Boise State for the league title. That means a likely trip to the Las Vegas Bowl for the Bulldogs.
With Virginia Tech's win over Marshall, the Hokies extended the nation's longest consecutive bowl streak to 26. Virginia Tech became the 82nd bowl-eligible team, which means four teams will be eligible and not have a bowl to play in. Those teams are projected to be Eastern Michigan, Miami (Ohio), Louisiana-Monroe and Wyoming.
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