Eight College Football Playoff scenarios for 2020

  • The final College Football Playoff pairings will be announced in just one week.The 2020 college football season continues with the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, and there remains uncertainty about where those semifinals will be played. Conference championship week is here, however, and the eight playoff scenarios remaining depend on the results of three conference championship games.Ohio State (5-0) takes on Northwestern (6-1) in the Big Ten championship game at noon ET on Dec. 19, and https://www.proeaglesshop.com/jordan-mailata-jerseys that will set the tone for the other two top-10 matchups: No. 2 Notre Dame (10-0) vs. No. 3 Clemson (9-1) in the ACC championship rematch from their double-overtime thriller on Nov. 7 and No. 1 Alabama (10-0) vs. Florida (8-2) in primetime in the SEC championship game. But who knows where the Gators rank after their ?MORE: The rest of the Playoff contenders are watching those results. Here are the eight scenarios that will unfold based off those three games:Playoff scenario No. 1Alabama beats Florida;Clemson beats Notre Dame;Ohio State beats Northwestern.1. Alabama (11-0)2. Clemson (10-1)3. Ohio State (6-0)4. Notre Dame (10-1) This is the expected order of events for next Saturday. If it happens, then the score between Clemson and Notre Dame becomes paramount. As long as the Irish aren’t blown out in this game, they will likely be the fourth team in the Playoff. The only question will be the pairings. We’re gue sing Clemson and Notre Dame get split up, but that’s not a guarantee either.Playoff scenario No. 2Alabama beats Florida;Notre Dame beats Clemson;Ohio State beats Northwestern.1. Alabama (11-0)2. Notre Dame (11-0)3. Ohio State (6-0)4. Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati (9-0) or USC (6-0) If the Irish can sweep Clemson, then the two-lo s Tigers would slip out of the Playoff for the first time in six years. That fourth spot, however, becomes a subject of a multi-layered debate: It’s either one-lo s Texas A&M or unbeaten, AAC champion Cincinnati, or https://www.proeaglesshop.com/mike-golic-jerseys unbeaten, Pac-12 champion USC. That sparks another debate about the Group of 5’s place in a system that has excluded them since its inception in 2014.MORE: Playoff scenario No. 3Florida beats Alabama;Notre Dame beats Clemson;Ohio State beats Northwestern.1. Notre Dame (11-0)2. Ohio State (6-0)3. Alabama (10-1)4. Florida (9-2), Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati (9-0) or USC (6-0) This is the damage done by Florida’s lo s. Even with a victory against Alabama, the Gators would likely fall behind Alabama in the final rankings. That would lead to a big debate for the final spot (including with 8-1 Texas A&M, which has a head-to-head victory over the Gators, too). Related: Remember when Penn State beat Ohio State head to head and won the Big Ten championship in 2016? The Buckeyes still got in because they were a one-lo s team, while Penn State finished fifth…Playoff scenario No. 4Florida beats Alabama;Clemson beats Notre Dame;Ohio State beats Northwestern.1. Clemson https://www.proeaglesshop.com (10-1)2. Ohio State (6-0)3. Alabama (10-1), Notre Dame (10-1), Texas A&M (8-1) or Florida (9-2)4. Alabama (10-1), Notre Dame (10-1), Texas A&M (8-1) or Florida (9-2) This one is going to create an interesting argument for those final two spots. The committee could take the easy way out and put Alabama and Notre Dame in, which would de-emphasize the SEC championship. Or it could take the Gators, but at whose expense? The Crimson Tide and Irish are the only two Power 5 schools that finished 10-0 in the regular season. Texas A&M likely has the worst chance to make the Playoff in this scenario. The scores will matter.MORE:Playoff scenario No. 5Alabama beats Florida;Notre Dame beats Clemson;Northwestern beats Ohio State.1. Alabama (11-0)2. Notre Dame (11-0)3. Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati (9-0), Northwestern (7-1) or USC (6-0)4. Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati (9-0), Northwestern (7-1) or USC (6-0) Any scenario involving the Buckeyes losing is unlikely but we’ll run through them anyway, starting with the most chaotic scenario of all. This would knock the Buckeyes out, creating that same interesting argument for the final two spots. Who do you put in?One-lo s Texas A&M is in the best position to sneak in for now. Who else? Undefeated, AAC champion Cincinnati? One-lo s, Big Ten champion Northwestern? An undefeated USC team out of the Pac-12? Since chaos is reigning anyway, what about a two-lo s Big 12 champion? Iowa State (9-2) or Oklahoma (8-2)?Playoff scenario No. 6Alabama beats Florida;Clemson beats Notre Dame;Northwestern beats Ohio State.1. Alabama (11-0)2. Clemson (10-1)3. Notre Dame (10-1)4. Texas A&M (8-1), Northwestern https://www.proeaglesshop.com/reggie-white-jerseys (7-1), Cincinnati (9-0) or USC (6-0) This is a cleaner vision, and it forces the committee to make just one tough decision. No two-lo s teams make the Playoff, and the committee could get creative in selecting Alabama’s semifinal opponent. Any one of those four teams could make that run, but the Aggies still have that inside track.Playoff scenario No. 7Florida beats Alabama;Clemson beats Notre Dame;Northwestern beats Ohio State.1. Clemson (10-1)2. Alabama (10-1)3. Notre Dame (10-1)4. Florida (9-2), Texas A&M (8-1), Northwestern (7-1), Cincinnati (9-0) or USC (6-0)This would be bad news for everybody outside the ACC and SEC. The committee falls back on the three best one-lo s teams: Clemson, Alabama and Notre Dame before debating whether to put in one-lo s A&M or two-lo s Florida. The games-played argument wins out, knocking out Northwestern and USC. Group of 5 team Cincinnati mi ses out too, making the Playoff the SEC-ACC Invitational. That last argument for the final spot would be a giant me s.Playoff scenario No. 8Florida beats Alabama;Notre Dame beats Clemson;Northwestern beats Ohio State.1. Notre Dame (11-0)2. Alabama (10-1)3. Florida (9-2), Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati ( https://www.proeaglesshop.com/philadelphia-eagles-t-shirts 9-0), Northwestern (7-1) or USC (6-0)4. Florida (9-2), Texas A&M (8-1), Cincinnati (9-0), Northwestern (7-1) or USC (6-0) If all three underdogs win on conference championship weekend, then that would likely knock out Clemson and Ohio State, even though they would be in those final discu sions with the other teams. Is this the chaos path that gets three SEC teams in the College Football Playoff? Or would the committee save face by giving the Bearcats or an undefeated USC team a shot?

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