TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football checked in at No. 5 in the penultimate College Football Playoff rankings released on Tuesday night.
The Crimson Tide is coming off a 26-14 loss at Auburn on Saturday. Auburn advanced to the SEC Championship Game to face Georgia, while Alabama must await its postseason fate.
Clemson took over the No. 1 spot in the rankings released on Tuesday. Auburn checked in at No. 2 following the win over Alabama. Oklahoma and Wisconsin rounded out the top four. Georgia checked in at No. 6.
The final College Football Playoff rankings will be released on Sunday, Dec. 3. Alabama has made the playoff in each year of its existence, but the Tide needs help this time around without a chance to play for the SEC title.
Alabama coach Nick Saban made the case for the Crimson Tide to still make the College Football Playoff, but Alabama will need some chaos to slide into the final four.
“I think this team deserves the opportunity to get in the playoff by what they’ve been able to accomplish and what they’ve been able to do,” Saban said postgame. “Certainly not maybe in this game, but I think the team we played tonight is a very good football team — probably one of the best teams in the country.
“They’ve won 11 games. Not very many teams are able to do that. I really don’t know what all the scenarios might be where we would have the opportunity to do it. I’d certainly like to see this team get the opportunity to do it, and I think they deserve it.”
At this point, Alabama needs chaos on championship Saturday. Alabama also must hope the committee values the Crimson Tide’s 11 wins over a potential two-loss conference champion.
Alabama’s chances of making the playoff seem bleak at the moment, but crazier things have happened in college football.
What Alabama likely needs to happen
The SEC Championship and the ACC Championship games essentially are play-in games.
Georgia would make it as a one-loss SEC champ. Auburn, even with two losses, would make it because they’d have two wins over the then-No. 1 team in a span of three weeks as well as the conference championship.
Both Clemson or Miami would make the final four as a one-loss ACC champ.
If Oklahoma wins, it’s in. If Wisconsin wins, the Badgers are in, too. SEC champ, ACC champ, Oklahoma and Wisconsin would be your final four.
Alabama fans need to root for TCU and Ohio State to win their respective conferences. A TCU win over Oklahoma likely would be enough for the Crimson Tide to slide back in. That combined with an Ohio State win over Wisconsin would make it tough for the committee to hold out Alabama.
Even though they’d have the Big 12 championship, it’s hard to envision a scenario where a two-loss TCU team gets in over Alabama.
The wild card is Ohio State. Let’s say Oklahoma wins and takes the third spot along with the SEC and ACC champs.
If Ohio State wins, the committee would then be forced to choose between a one-loss Alabama and a two-loss, Big Ten champ Ohio State.
We’ve seen the committee award Ohio State over others in the past. In 2014, the Buckeyes made the cut over TCU and Baylor. Last season, the Buckeyes slipped in despite not winning their conference. The result from last year could actually work in Alabama’s favor.
Ohio State has two blowout losses on its resume this year. The Oklahoma loss doesn’t look as bad considering how good the Sooners are, but that’s still a home loss for the Buckeyes. The 55-24 loss at Iowa is inexcusable.
The post College Football Playoff rankings: Alabama slips to No. 5 spot in fifth ranking of 2017 appeared first on SEC Country.