“Of course we got in. Did anybody think we wouldn’t?” – probably Nick Saban…in his mind
Don’t get me wrong…ol’ Nick lobbied HARD for that final spot knowing he would have to interject something into the conversation to assure that the Tide would get into the College Football Playoff yet again.
Look, in the end it was going to be a debate anyway between the following teams:
- An Ohio State team that won a conference championship, had a few wins over Top 25 teams but lost twice, with one of those losses being by 30+ to an average Iowa team, and
- An Alabama team that only lost once and looked dominant in a lot of their games but had a much (MUCH!) easier schedule than Ohio State, and didn’t even win their division let alone their conference.
The Committee picked Bama. I kind of agree. I can see their point. They are probably more talented than Ohio State is so there’s that. I do not like the fact that committee chair Kirby Hocutt said Bama was “easily the better team.” Get the fuck outta here Kirby. Were they the better team? Sure. Easily? Not by a longshot. That’s him just trying to justify the choice to deflect hatred towards the Committee. Hey Kirby why didn’t you just say “We have to pick four teams so one of those two had to be the fourth team and we debated and went over the numbers and determined Alabama was the better team.” That would actually make sense. Then again, there are a LOT of people in college sports where common sense is not exactly so common.
Now as for the conference championship games themselves…
- Clemson destroyed Miami in every facet of the game to win the ACC Championship and be the #1 seed in the CFP Rankings. It was over pretty early.
- Georgia took its time but finally pulled away to beat Auburn for the SEC Championship and clinch the #3 seed. It feels like most of these SEC Championships, which get their own timeslot, are relatively non-competitive.
- You heard about Ohio State earlier. They beat Wisconsin but it was close. I have a feeling if they had blown Wisconsin out it might have been a different debate.
- Oklahoma pretty much beat up on TCU to get that #2 seed. This also cost TCU a New Year’s Six spot in the end. For some reason the Big XII Championship causes more heartbreak than anything going back to when they actually had XII teams.
- The Pac-12 Championship was pretty much ignored. It was on Friday night. 5:00 local time. All in all, a bad look for the conference. USC won by the way.
- The AAC Championship was gloriously absurd. UCF finished their perfect season by beating Memphis 62-55 in double overtime. I guess one of the A’s in AAC stands for Arena. Anyway, during overtime it was announced that Scott Frost was hired as the new coach at Nebraska. In a classy move, he, along with the AD and others at UCF decided that Frost will coach the bowl game. Nice to see a coach not race off to their new job and finish what they started.
- All aboard the Lane Train! The FAU Owls annihilated North Texas to win the Conference USA Championship. With so many job openings I am sure it’s just a matter of time before Lane moves on. But other than Tennessee, he hasn’t been linked to any other school yet. Interesting…
- The MAC Championship was predictable. Toledo beat Akron pretty handily. If it wasn’t for the ill-timed loss to Ohio, the Rockets would have at least been in the New Year’s Six conversation.
- Boise State won a close Mountain West Championship over Fresno State that ended up being one of the best games of the day. The Bulldogs have nothing to be ashamed about though with their turnaround from last season.
- This wasn’t a conference championship game but Troy beat Arkansas State to win a share of the Sun Belt title in another close game. Next season, the Sun Belt becomes the final conference to institute a conference championship game.
- Finally, New Mexico State beat South Alabama to earn their first bowl bid in over half a century! That’s insane! Good for the Aggies who now will be kicked out of the Sun Belt.
I won’t get into the bowl bids too much here. I will be going over all the bowls in much more detail and provide a full TV schedule sometime before the bowl season starts on December 16th. All I know is that the bowl selection show sounded absurdly long and some of the bowl bids didn’t even come in until AFTER the ESPN show was over. They need to compact it a bit. But they won’t. ESPN is too powerful so won’t change unless they are forced to. At that point it will be too late.
Monday Night Football tonight and then no football until Friday night when we start getting some FCS playoff games. We have some great football over the next month but soon enough we will be without football so cherish these times. Enjoy the games everyone.