College Football Playoff Race: Week 14

Story posted December 2, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Justin Ciavolella

We have finally reached championship week but not before an exciting rivalry week shook up the College Football Playoff landscape.

The playoff bracket will be revealed during the selection show Sunday afternoon. As the season wraps up, let's take a look at the teams with the best chance to make the playoffs.

No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs

The Bulldogs further proved this week why they are the No. 1 ranked team in the country with a strong 45-0 win over Georgia Tech.

Their defense, which is arguably the best in College Football, did not break yet again posting their third shutout of the season.

Though he was limited this week, highly regarded wide receiver George Pickens returned from injury. The offense will look to further benefit from his return.

Georgia takes on No. 3 Alabama in the SEC Championship game this weekend. Win or lose, Georgia has guaranteed their spot in the College Football Playoff.

No. 2 Michigan Wolverines

Michigan took down a very talented Ohio State team this week to jump up to the No. 2 spot in the country.

Michigan, much like Georgia, has been led by its defense. Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo keep making plays from the defensive line helping the Wolverines dominate.

Its offense propelled them to victory this week with a surprising five-touchdown performance by Hassan Haskins. Cade McNamara has been a solid leader under center for this offense.

Jim Harbaugh led teams tend to struggle in the big game, but Michigan has the opportunity to get rid of that narrative for good this weekend.

They will line up with another ranked opponent in No. 15 Iowa with the Big Ten Championship on the line this weekend.

They control their destiny as a win will lock up their spot in the playoffs.

No. 3 Alabama Crimson Tide

The most intriguing case for the College Football Playoff committee comes from Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

The No. 3 ranked Crimson Tide already have one loss on their record after Texas A&M shocked them earlier in the season.

They take on No. 1 Georgia in the SEC Championship game this weekend. A win will guarantee that they make the playoffs, a loss complicates things a lot.

Assuming Oklahoma State and Cincinnati win this weekend, Alabama would need the committee to take their reputation highly and allow them in with two losses. If one of them loses, Alabama can lose and most likely still make it in.

For now, Heisman hopeful Bryce Young and the Crimson Tide will look to upset the Bulldogs following a near-disastrous Iron Bowl upset.

No. 4 Cincinnati Bearcats

It took the committee a few weeks, but the Bearcats have finally earned the committee’s respect and are ranked at No. 4.

Despite that, Cincinnati does not have much on their resume other than a win against No. 6 Notre Dame.
The Bearcats will take on No. 16 Houston in the AAC Championship game.

A win this week will help give them another top 25 victory, however, it still may not be enough to stay in the College Football Playoff.

The Group of Five still has never been represented in the playoffs and while Cincinnati is undefeated the committee could still give the spot to Alabama or Oklahoma State instead.

No. 5 Oklahoma State Cowboys

Oklahoma State defeated Oklahoma 37-33 during rivalry week, which propelled them up to No. 5 in the rankings.

It was a game that started making the dominoes fall in the coaching carousel. Their offense was able to put up points all night and their defense came up big down the stretch.

The Cowboys get another top 10 matchup this week against No. 9 Baylor. They defeated Baylor 24-14 earlier in the season and will look for a similar result this weekend.

With another top 10 victory, it would be easy to see the committee putting them in over the Bearcats.

Justin Ciavolella is a first-year student majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email jtc5751@psu.edu.