FBS Playoff

By: Andrew Holtan Columnist

A look at which lucky teams will be the four chosen for a shot at the national championship


In June of 2012 the NCAA presidents announced that a four-team playoff would take place in starting in 2014. This was a huge announcement after all the controversy that Bowl Championship Series caused for 15 seasons.

Six bowl games will rotate as semifinal hosts. The Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., the Orange Bowl in Miami, Fla., the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz.,  the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans, La., the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas and the Peach bowl in Atlanta, Ga. The site of the Championship Game will be based on bidding from different stadiums around the country.

The semifinal games this year will be played at the Rose Bowl and the Sugar Bowl on New Years Day. The championship will be played six days after on Jan. 7.

A selection committee of former coaches, former player, athletic directors and NCAA officials was put together to decide who will be the four teams that play in the playoff.

They will began posting top 25 rankings on Oct. 28 and will do that for the next seven weeks. The biggest thing they will use to rank the teams is strength of schedule. They will also use things like head to head results, injuries and conference championship games to decide.

So this may leave you wondering who will be in and who will be left out? Well, I think I may have some answers as to who it may be at the end of the season.

We start out with the No. 1 team in the AP Top 25, the Florida State Seminoles. The Seminoles are coming off of two hard fought victories against No. 22 Clemson and North Carolina State. FSU came into the Clemson game without their star Quarterback Jameis Winston but prevailed in overtime 23-17. The Noles have two tough games in a row playing against No. 9 Notre Dame on Oct. 18 and then going to play on the road against a good Louisville team the next week. I believe they get through the part of this schedule and end up going undefeated for a second straight season and find themselves with the number one seed in the playoff.

We now go to the Pac-12 where I believe there are two teams contending for a playoff spot. No. 2 Oregon has been rolling ever since beating No. 7 Michigan State 46-27. They have a tough game in two weeks at No. 8 UCLA, who throttled then No. 15 Arizona State, which will probably decide which one of these teams goes to the playoff. I see the Ducks winning this game and then going undefeated sending them to the playoff.

Alabama has had great year so far but has not played anyone that great with their toughest game so far being at home against Florida where they won 42-21. They face a tough back end of their schedule still having to play six ranked opponents starting with No. 10 Ole Miss this weekend. This is not the same Alabama of recent years so I don’t see them making it to the playoff with this kind of schedule.

There are two teams in the Big 12 that will have a shot as long as they don’t slip up before they play each other. No. 4 Oklahoma and No. 7 Baylor will get together on Nov. 8 to probably decide which one will go undefeated and put themselves right into the playoff. I don’t see either of the teams losing a game to another team in the Big 12. I think Oklahoma beats Baylor and goes undefeated and outs themselves in the playoff.

I do not see anyone from the Big Ten getting in the playoff. They really hurt themselves when Michigan State lost to Oregon and Wisconsin lost to Michigan State. Wisconsin and Michigan State will probably meet in the Big Ten Championship but will not have a good enough strength of schedule to make it to the playoff. ‘

My fourth and final team in the playoff is a team out the SEC who will probably end up with one loss but because of their strength of schedule they will reach the playoff. This team is No. 13 Georgia Bulldogs. They lost two weeks ago to South Carolina and everyone thought they were done. I don’t think so. They have the most favorable schedule out of the teams in the SEC because they only play two top 25 team while teams like Alabama, Texas A&M and Auburn play at least four teams in the top 25. They play at No. 24 Missouri next week and then play No. 5 Auburn the second to last week of the season. They also will play a top 25 team in the SEC Championship game. I see Georgia running the table the rest of the year behind their Heisman candidate running back Todd Gurley and finding themselves being the only team out of the powerful SEC in the playoff.

There will certainly be a lot of controversy still even with this playoff as the fifth and sixth teams will have reasons as to why they should get in. But all in all we will finally get to find a true champion as they play it out on the field.