Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher made an impassioned plea as to why he believes the No. 5 Aggies should make the College Football Playoff after his team finished the regular season 8-1 with a 34-13 win at Tennessee on Saturday. Despite their loss coming against No. 1 Alabama by 28 points (52-24 on Oct. 3), the Aggies will need to jump someone in Sunday's final CFP Rankings if they are going to make the playoff.
Fisher thinks they should be in position to do so.
"You want me to tell you why?" Fisher said to ESPN's Quint Kessenich after his team's win against the Vols. "We play in the best league in ball. We got beat by the No. 1 team in the country who also had another superstar on the team when they played us named [Jaylen] Waddle. People ain't even playing them with him now. No team in SEC history has ever lost but one game and [not] been in it.
"The other leagues, I love them all, but if we can't play in this league and be in the playoff, something is wrong."
Fisher was correct in his assessment that a one-loss SEC team has never been excluded from the CFP. But only one of the four SEC teams to make the field with a loss since the playoff began in the 2014 season made the field without winning the SEC Championship Game. That was Alabama in 2017.
The Aggies' marquee victory this season is a 41-38 home win over a Florida team that was ranked No. 4 at the time. That close victory came with the Gators down some defensive pieces due to COVID-19, and it lost some luster last week when Florida was upset by LSU. But that has not deterred Fisher's belief in his team's playoff credentials.
"The people on the committees will do their job, but this team is very deserving," Fisher said. "I'm going to tell you that."
CBS Sports bowls expert Jerry Palm detailed Texas A&M's path to the playoff as follows (before Saturday's games began):
Beat Tennessee in its postponed game and hope for the best from the CFP Selection Committee. No. 5 Texas A&M needs two of Clemson, Ohio State and Florida to lose in order to backdoor its way into the CFP.