Not for real, anyway. If the contrarian itch hit me and just had to scratch, yeah, maybe. But, nah. Nothing to legitimately bitch about.
They got it right. With Tuesday night’s unveiling of the College Football Playoff rankings, a measure of peace settled over and within me that, hmmm, hadn’t expected.
When you see others’ brilliance sync up with your own, guess that’s what happens …
OK, while releasing tongue from being firmly planted in cheek, let’s review:
- Notre Dame
Argue the order all you want, but those are the best four teams so far this season. For me, not even debatable. At all. Gut feeling and eye test here would put Clemson at the top, but the Tigers did lose, to an unranked Syracuse to boot, while Georgia and Alabama have been resoundingly impressive while posting 8-0 starts.
Notre Dame? The Irish’s lone “crime” was falling to Georgia by 1. In the last two weeks, they’ve beaten top-15 teams by a combined 56 points. They deserve to be where they are.
Heck, those coming up with the rankings even got 5 (Oklahoma) and 6 (Ohio State) right. Even in the right order there.
Sorry, Buckeyes fans, but you can’t be losing by 15, at home, and seriously think you should be ahead of that team when you have the same record and it comes to determining playoff positioning.
Yo, OSU still has a shot to get into a national semifinal anyway. As does Oklahoma.
Can’t really count out anyone, say, in the top 10 because we still got a month to go in the regular season.
Honestly, the CFP peeps even provided some sound advice to consider.
As in, strength of schedule matters. Big time. Hey, Penn State and unbeaten Wisconsin, the Nos. 7 and 9 teams in the rankings, heed that advice. No more dates with Akron or Georgia State or Florida Atlantic, unless they somehow become relevant or you can count on just about every single conference game on your slate being against a ranked opponent year after year.
Also, how you win matters. Umm, No. 10 Miami, take note. Take a lot of notes. Nice, glossy cover to that résumé, with a 7-0 record, but, upon further review, yeah, might wanna beef up the actual performance. Pretty mediocre.
Perception matters, too. Sorry, No. 8 Texas Christian. Apparently, unless the Horned Frogs go unbeaten, they’re forever screwed by an underlying stigma that paints them as not major players even though they happen to play in a Power-5 conference.
Unbeaten Central Florida, at No. 18, is foiled by perception and schedule, but probably has been more “wow” than any other team in the country with its performance.
Unfortunately for the Knights, they got bigger problems right now than worrying about respect. With every coach firing, or hinting of a coach firing, it seems more and more likely that the guy directing them to potential prominence will be gone in short order. Scott Frost, they may have hardly knew ye.
As for the current top 4 ultimately comprising the national semifinal combatants, don’t count on it. Alabama plays three ranked teams the rest of the regular season, two of them on the road. Georgia plays two, one of them on the road. Plus, should both as expected with their respective SEC divisions, they’d meet in the conference championship game.
So we’re talking at least one loss between them, at minimum. Don’t be surprised if there are more, either.
Notre Dame still has to play at Miami and No. 21 Stanford, not to mention against ever-dangerous Navy in between.
Clemson, the reigning national champ, frankly, has the easiest path to the playoffs, facing just one ranked opponent the rest of the way. Still, it also has in-state rival South Carolina to close out the regular season before heading to the ACC title tilt, probably for a rematch with No. 13 Virginia Tech.
So, Penn State fans, not to mention those favoring Miami, Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Ohio State, it ain’t over yet. Not by a long shot.
So, no complaints. Those voting got it right. For now.