ATLANTA (CBS46/AP) – The first College Football Playoff selection committee’s rankings released Tuesday night has the SEC sitting pretty with two of the top six teams, led by the undefeated LSU Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide.
Looking at the top five, Ohio State checked in at number one followed by: LSU, Alabama, Penn State, and Clemson. Fans of the Clemson Tigers immediately took to social media to complain about the lack of respect for the defending national champions who are undefeated this season, but if the playoffs started today, would be left out.
The top five will likely look quite different a week from now as #2 Alabama will play #3 LSU on Saturday in Tuscaloosa. The hard-hitting matchup has been circled for most of the season as a deciding game to see who will head to Atlanta to play for the SEC Championship.
By the way, the only place you can see the LSU vs. Alabama game is on CBS46 at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
Ohio State has dominated the competition it’s played, but hasn’t played anyone past Wisconsin of any note. Still, the Buckeyes have not played a close game this year and look like a lock for the playoff if they continue to take care of business in the Big Ten.
With the SEC possibly set to get two teams into the playoff again this season, that leaves one open spot up for grabs between Clemson, Oregon, and possibly Utah or Oklahoma. Just don’t expect to see all four of the top teams this week in the playoff as it’s never happened in the five-year history of the CFP.
As for the Georgia Bulldogs, all they have to do is win and they’re in. The Bulldogs, despite a bad loss against South Carolina, need to take care of business on Saturday by easily beating Missouri and then finish off the season with wins over Texas A&M, Auburn, and Georgia Tech.
Then Georgia can play giant-killer in the SEC Championship game in Atlanta against a likely undefeated Alabama or LSU team. A win there would guarantee the Dawgs a spot in the playoff, a loss would likely send the team to the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans.
Another note, the only place to see the SEC Championship game is on CBS46 on December 7 at 4 p.m.
But first, Georgia must take care of Missouri on Saturday to lock down the SEC East crown.
Over the last five years, 11 of the 20 teams to appear in the top four of the committee's initial rankings went on to reach the playoff. The hit rate has been going up. In 2014, just one of the initial first four advanced to the playoff: second-place Florida State. That increased to two the next two years. The last two years, three of the initial top four made the playoff.