For weeks, we’ve been dissecting, diagramming, and divining what the School Soccer Playoff may or ought to appear like on the finish of this zany season, after which Saturday’s convention championships got here alongside and made all the things fairly darn clear.
We don’t know what the seedings will probably be, however we do know that the committee received’t put shock SEC champ Alabama (there’s 4 phrases which can be bizarre to place collectively) and Georgia in the identical semifinal. We additionally know that Cincinnati did all the things it was requested to do, completed undefeated, and pulled away from Houston within the second half to emerge as a convincing Convention USA champion, and presumably the primary group from exterior the Energy 5 to make the four-team CFP.
Likewise, Michigan, sitting at No. 2, earned its method into the title image by beating Iowa for the Huge Ten title — no letdown there after final week’s momentous win over Ohio State. Notre Dame can be on the market with one loss (so is Louisiana! And so is UTSA! Meep meep!), nevertheless it positive does appear unlikely that the committee will deviate from a group that was No. 1 all yr, plus the 2-4 that each one received on Saturday. So, what do we now have to look ahead to as the ultimate 4 are unveiled on Sunday?
Jesse Spector: I feel Michigan stays at 2, and congratulations, Wolverines, which means you get to face probably the most dominant group within the nation all yr, Georgia. It’s bought to be Alabama at 1, with that win over the Bulldogs giving them a good declare to the highest spot, and dealing with Cincinnati. I feel which means Alabama-Cincinnati within the Cotton Bowl and Michigan-Georgia within the Orange Bowl. It doesn’t actually matter, it’s not just like the Peach Bowl is there for Alabama to say a bonus in the event that they’re No. 1, nor for Michigan to keep away from enjoying Georgia in Atlanta.
Grace McDermott: I’m so completely happy for Cincinnati, and I feel that they deserve the three spot over Georgia after that disastrous efficiency towards Alabama this afternoon — however nobody desires to observe a rematch of that. I suppose Kirby Good continues to be ready for his day to come back. So I hate to be this particular person, but when Cincinnati is undefeated and we don’t need to see a rematch…nicely, I’ll simply say the Irish are fired up and are a one-loss group that’s been on their method up all November. I imply, Georgia utterly fell aside at the moment. I don’t learn about that 3 seed for them.
Jesse: I’m in no way against Cincinnati being No. 3, I simply don’t suppose it’ll occur. If it does, then it’s most likely Alabama at 2 and Michigan at 1, and never a lot distinction except for who will get to select a uniform shade for the ultimate. I do have to query, although, whether or not you hate to be this particular person. However, I’ll chew. I can’t come out and say that Georgia isn’t one of many 4 finest groups within the nation. Might Notre Dame beat them? Positive. They’re a great group and it’s doable. Are they higher? Ehhhhh, we spent all fall watching Georgia simply dismantle groups, which the Irish did via November. Georgia’s loss is to the No. 1 group. Notre Dame’s is to the No. 3 or 4 group. Was there one thing about at the moment, when Notre Dame didn’t play, to say that Georgia is worse?
Grace: That’s a good query — ND each suffers and advantages from the shortage of the thirteenth knowledge level, and to be truthful, they did get let into the playoff final yr after a loss paying homage to Georgia’s at the moment. So it’s a toss up for the 4 spot, however after the Dawgs’ dominant-till-now season, I realistically suppose they’ll get in. I’d simply like to see the Irish in with their new coach. Apart from that debate, I’ve to say how happy I’m to see some new faces within the working this yr. It ought to make for an thrilling and unpredictable New Yr’s Eve.
Jesse: It would by no means cease being humorous to me that solely two conferences from the Energy 5 will probably be represented within the four-team playoff. Even when Notre Dame did pip Georgia for 4, they’re an impartial. Increasing the playoff has lots of pitfalls connected to it, nevertheless it’s at all times been wild that at the least one convention could be out of the sport of musical chairs, and now three of them will probably be. However they’ll all be repped within the FORTY-TWO bowl video games over the following month, so we’ll get to have some enjoyable with that!
Thanks for the rat poison!
Arduous to say which was extra stunning, Alabama beating Georgia so soundly, or Nick Saban being as near giddy as you’ll see Nick Saban (the first coach to register eight wins over No. 1 groups), as a result of for as soon as he was in a position to enter a sport with slights that have been extra than simply perceived. Additionally, a time period to switch “bulletin board materials” on this period the place no one really makes use of bulletin boards for such issues.
Talking of rat poison, it most likely winds up not mattering due to the probability of the committee merely reshuffling final week’s high 4 to kind the playoff subject, however No. 5 Oklahoma State had so very many bites on the cheese on the finish of the Huge 12 title sport, solely to fall quick towards Baylor.
After attending to the Bears’ 10-yard line with 1:37 left, the Cowboys had a four-yard run, drew a defensive go interference penalty to get first-and-goal on the 2, then ran 4 performs that gained a complete of 1 yard. That’s six snaps from 10 yards or much less, needing a landing to take the lead, and no selection for OANN aficionado Mike Gundy however to simply accept the outcomes.
Oh, and the Michigan play.
A flea flicker final week and now this? The Wolverines are going into the playoff feeling frisky.