…that 100s of other experts have already done.
Last year I was half-right with my CFP predictions (Clemson and Alabama). And Ohio State and TCU weren’t that far out of the mix. And I had five out of the eight teams picked correctly for the New Year’s Six. Take that Jerry Palm! Then again I am sure he did much, much better than I did so I will shut up now.
Alright, let’s start with the College Football Playoff itself. I have this feeling it will look quite different than most experts’ take on what we will see at the end of the season. Reminder that all the rankings here are the rankings I believe each team will have at the end of the season (before the bowls):
|December 31, 2016||7:00||Fiesta Bowl||#2 Florida State||#3 Michigan State|
|December 31, 2016||3:00||Peach Bowl||#1 LSU||#4 Oklahoma|
Yes, those are the four teams I have in the CFP. And I know no one else has those four. To be honest, I don’t think anyone has LSU number one, especially with Ole Miss and Bama in their division but I outlined that in my SEC predictions. Florida State will run the table and Michigan State will have a tough enough schedule that, at 11-1, they should be a shoo-in. I put Oklahoma at #4 since the Pac-12 will be a battle of attrition. That conference has got so tough (sans Oregon State and Colorado) that it would be quite the feat for a team to win 11 games in that conference. I don’t see that happening so that will be the conference on the outside looking in for a second straight year.
Now on to the New Year’s Six predictions which are sure to raise an eyebrow or two:
|January 2, 2017||8:30||Sugar Bowl||#9 Alabama||#11 Baylor|
|January 2, 2017||5:00||Rose Bowl||#8 Iowa||#13 Utah|
|January 2, 2017||1:00||Cotton Bowl||#5 Boise State||#10 Georgia|
|December 30, 2016||8:00||Orange Bowl||#7 Clemson||#6 Notre Dame|
I foresee Boise State having a very frustrating season. Running the table, defeating another undefeated team in the Mountain West Conference championship (San Diego State) and then being passed over for Michigan State and Oklahoma? If this doesn’t tell the Group of Five teams and conferences that you would have to have lightning in a bottle to just make it into the CFP, then I don’t know what will. Yep I have them getting the #5 spot because I am sure The Committee wouldn’t have the guts to put them in. Which would suck but it is what it is.
The Pac-12 Champ, Utah, would go to the Rose Bowl to face the Big Ten second choice, Iowa, who should have another great season with another relatively easy schedule. Notre Dame is a shoo-in for the New Year’s Six at #6. To be honest, they could fall as low as #15 and I am almost positive they would be picked unless circumstances stated they couldn’t. Clemson should end up facing the Irish in the Orange Bowl. The second best teams from the SEC and Big XII face off in the Sugar Bowl. I don’t think Bama would be kept out of this one, even if Ole Miss does beat them during the regular season. I have the Tide facing Baylor who should get through all the crap the program is going through to have a very successful season. The final at-large team, who will face Boise, is a tough call. A few good teams available but I don’t see The Committee overlooking Georgia for that spot. This means that Ole Miss, Ohio State, Washington, and TCU would miss out. Also missing out would be Houston and San Diego State because of Boise State’s perfect run.
Now here are the rest of the bowl game projections:
|January 2, 2017||1:00||Outback Bowl||#21 Tennessee||#23 Michigan|
|December 31, 2016||11:00||TaxSlayer Bowl||Florida||Miami|
|December 31, 2016||11:00||Citrus Bowl||#12 Ole Miss||#14 Ohio State|
|December 30, 2016||5:30||Arizona Bowl||New Mexico||Marshall|
|December 30, 2016||3:30||Music City Bowl||Mississippi State||Wisconsin|
|December 30, 2016||2:30||Sun Bowl||UCLA||Virginia Tech|
|December 30, 2016||12:00||Liberty Bowl||Auburn||West Virginia|
|December 29, 2016||9:00||Alamo Bowl||#17 Washington||#18 TCU|
|December 29, 2016||5:30||Belk Bowl||Arkansas||Louisville|
|December 29, 2016||2:00||Birmingham Bowl||Arizona State||#16 Houston|
|December 28, 2016||9:00||Texas Bowl||Texas A&M||Texas|
|December 28, 2016||5:30||Russell Athletic Bowl||#24 Oklahoma State||#19 North Carolina|
|December 28, 2016||2:00||Pinstripe Bowl||Nebraska||Pittsburgh|
|December 27, 2016||10:15||Cactus Bowl||USC||Kansas State|
|December 27, 2016||7:00||Holiday Bowl||Northwestern||#22 Stanford|
|December 27, 2016||3:30||Military Bowl||NC State||Temple|
|December 27, 2016||12:00||Heart of Dallas Bowl||Minnesota||Southern Miss|
|December 26, 2016||5:00||Independence Bowl||Louisiana Tech||Wake Forest|
|December 26, 2016||2:30||Quick Lane Bowl||Indiana||#20 Western Michigan|
|December 26, 2016||11:00||St. Petersburg Bowl||Georgia Tech||USF|
|December 24, 2016||8:00||Hawaii Bowl||Air Force||Middle Tennessee|
|December 23, 2016||8:00||GoDaddy Bowl||Northern Illinois||Georgia Southern|
|December 23, 2016||4:30||Armed Forces Bowl||Navy||Idaho|
|December 23, 2016||1:00||Bahamas Bowl||Cincinnati||Toledo|
|December 22, 2016||10:30||Foster Farms Bowl||Penn State||#25 Oregon|
|December 22, 2016||7:00||Idaho Potato Bowl||Utah State||Bowling Green|
|December 21, 2016||9:00||Poinsettia Bowl||BYU||UNLV|
|December 20, 2016||7:00||Boca Raton Bowl||Memphis||Western Kentucky|
|December 19, 2016||2:30||Miami Beach Bowl||Tulsa||Ohio|
|December 17, 2016||9:00||New Orleans Bowl||Rice||Arkansas State|
|December 17, 2016||5:30||Camellia Bowl||Central Michigan||UL-Lafayette|
|December 17, 2016||5:30||Cure Bowl||Buffalo||Appalachian State|
|December 17, 2016||3:30||Las Vegas Bowl||Washington State||#15 San Diego State|
|December 17, 2016||2:00||New Mexico Bowl||Nevada||UTEP|
- Yes I am that cock that has Tennessee, Michigan, and Ohio State not making it into the College Football Playoff nor the New Year’s Six. It’s not that I don’t buy the hype. It’s the fact that there are enough blips in their schedule that I don’t foresee any way that either of these three teams get out without at least two losses.
- I had already mentioned Ole Miss, tOSU, Washington, TCU, SDSU, and Houston just missing out on the New Year’s Six. Other ranked teams not being quite good enough to get to the adult table include Oklahoma State and North Carolina playing at the Russell Athletic Bowl, Stanford being relegated to the Holiday Bowl, Oregon being even further relegated to the Foster Farms Bowl, and Western Michigan getting a somewhat higher profile game in Detroit against Indiana.
- Teams close to home according to my projections would include Florida and Miami (TaxSlayer Bowl), New Mexico (Arizona Bowl), TCU (Alamo Bowl), Texas A&M and Texas (Texas Bowl), Temple (Military Bowl), Louisiana Tech (Independence Bowl), Western Michigan (Quick Lane Bowl), USF (St. Petersburg Bowl), UTEP (New Mexico Bowl).
- Yes you saw that right: Texas A&M and Texas in the Texas Bowl. That’s about as Texas as you’re gonna get. To be honest, I don’t think this will happen since one is afraid of the other (depending on who you ask). Would be nice though and long overdue.
- I have three bowls not being able to fill their spots due to the idiotic old school bowl tie-in system: the Birmingham (SEC or ACC), Armed Forces (Big XII), and Cure Bowls (American). So this is where Arizona State (to the Birmingham), Idaho (to the Armed Forces…yes, Idaho), and Buffalo (to the Cure) fit in. I still believe the amount of bowl tie-ins should be capped at six maximum.
- I have exactly 80 bowl-eligible teams on my list (which already tells you that these projections are most likely horseshit). This means no one gets in with a waiver or because they have smarter students and no one gets left out because 40 bowls isn’t quite enough. Everything fits nicely.
In the end, I have the following results in my (probably deranged) mind:
- Notre Dame beating Clemson in a very close Orange Bowl on New Year’s Eve Eve.
- Boise State beating the fuck out of Georgia in the Cotton Bowl. No offense to Dawgs fans but I think the Broncos will be that good and probably should be included in the CFP. Watch them go 7-5 and make me look like a stupid dipshit.
- Utah over Iowa in the Rose Bowl. This time Iowa won’t be blown out by halftime.
- Alabama will beat Baylor pretty handily in the Sugar.
- LSU will pull away from Oklahoma sometime early in the fourth to get to the national championship game against…
- Florida State who will beat Michigan State but not as badly as Bama put a whoopin’ on them last season.
Yep I have LSU and Florida State to face off in the national championship. I think Les Miles finally shuts everyone up by winning the title a little over a year after getting as close to shitcanned as you can get in this sport.
I am now done the predictions for this coming season. Well, the college ones at least. I will have NFL predictions up next week some time. We are now exactly two weeks away from the Shitshow in Sydney!