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Predicting the College Football Playoff




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The College Football Playoff system is much different than college basketball as there are only four teams given a shot at the National Championship. There has been talk about expanding the CFP in the coming years, but that won’t go into effect this season.

Now that the first rankings have been announced, it’s time to start making some predictions about how the final 4 CFP field will look. A lot can change in the coming week’s match-ups, but it’s pretty clear which teams are favored by the committee and by the sportsbooks. FanDuelDraftKings, and BetMGM have all got Georgia as the heavy favorite followed by Ohio State and Alabama.

College Football Playoff & Rankings

There have been just 11 different teams make the College Football Playoff since it was implemented in 2014. A number of these “same” teams are back on the radar again this season. 

georgia ncaaf

Top six College Football Playoff teams in the first ranking:

  1. Georgia
  2. Alabama
  3. Michigan State
  4. Oregon
  5. Ohio State
  6. Cincinnati

Top six College Football Playoff teams in the latest ranking (as of 11/22/21):

  1. Georgia
  2. Ohio State
  3. Alabama
  4. Cincinnati
  5. Notre Dame
  6. Michigan

Can Anyone Top the SEC?

To the surprise of no one, the first CFP rankings had the Georgia Bulldogs and Alabama Crimson Tide at the top of the rankings. Alabama has even lost a game and they still were the second-ranked team by the committee.

Even though there is some debate about having Alabama in the second spot, the real arguments began with the Michigan State Spartans at number three. The Big Ten Conference is getting some respect here, and the Pac-12 also had a team with Oregon at number four. However with the recent loses by both teams, MSU lost to OSU and Oregon were upset by Utah, these teams have dropped outside the top 10 and would need some help to creep back in to the top 4.

The fact that the SEC is likely going to capture two spots again this season just doesn’t leave much room for other schools. Unless there are some big changes in the final few weeks of the season then there are going to be about eight non-SEC teams fighting for the final two spots.

Cincinnati Going to Miss Out

Cincinnati were ranked as high as number two in recent AP polls, but that has little effect on the CFP rankings. The Bearcats have a monster road win over Notre Dame on their resume this season, but that’s about all they have. 

Cincinnati are currently sitting at number four as the only other undefeated team and presumably would need to stay that way in order to remain in the CFP. Going undefeated is the best that the Bearcats can do, but it still might not be enough.

College Football Playoff Prediction

The SEC Championship Game should feature Alabama and Georgia, and a loss from the Crimson Tide could knock them out. However, an Alabama win would keep both SEC teams in the final field and the seeding would just be shifted a bit. 

Ohio State should win the Big Ten Conference, against either Wisconsin or Iowa. Notre Dame should finish their season 11-1, and that will earn them a spot over Cincinnati in the final rankings. 

The seedings could be moved around a bit depending on how the championship games shake out, but these four teams are going to be in the field:

  1. Alabama
  2. Ohio State
  3. Georgia
  4. Notre Dame

How To Bet On Football

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