As soon as ESPN posted this picture on their website, I stole it. 2 weeks ago I predicted who would be in the Final Four for the College Football Playoffs. Before I reveal how well I did, I want to make an unpopular statement:
Today Notre Dame was rewarded for not joining the Big 10. This Fighting Irish team would not have had an undefeated record if it was in any conference...except for the American Athletic Conference.
That was my prediction two weeks ago in the article McKenzie Milton is Right, ESPN is Wrong. Milton was jockeying, hope against hope, for one of those coveted Top 4 spots. Unfortunately, Milton was injured almost immediately after the article came out. Don't get me wrong, UCF wasn't getting in anyways, but as soon as Milton was injured the Committee wrote them off. (Even though they won their last 2 games.)
Let's review what I got Right and what I got Wrong.
1. Alabama - Alabama
Alabama rolled into the #1 spot as I expected, even though Georgia was a bigger speed bump than expected.
2. Clemson - Clemson
I didn't think they'd have any problems getting into the #2 position and I was right.
3. Notre Dame - Oklahoma
I honestly thought that the Committee would penalize Notre Dame for not being in a conference championship game. They didn't. Oklahoma did get into the #4 spot.
4. Oklahoma - Washington State
I had more faith in Mike Leach, but that didn't pan out. Not only did Washington State lose to Washington, they fell all the way to #13 and even missed out on a NY6 game.
5. Georgia - Notre Dame
I expected Georgia to lose to Alabama and to fall to 7 or 8. I didn't expect Georgia to lose and then only fall to 5. Notre Dame supposedly has an average strength of schedule but what are you going to do? A few years back the Committee penalized Oklahoma because there wasn't a Big 12 Championship Game. This year for Notre Dame? No Conference Championship Game? No problem.
Notre Dame played one less game, which was one less opportunity to lose
6. Ohio State - Ohio State
I thought Ohio State would get jammed if they won out and the did. They won arguably the second best conference this year but didn't win enough 'style points.'
Which is still what's wrong with the college playoff system. I kept hearing that Ohio State didn't pass the eye test. The eyes test? College Football still hasn't gotten it right because they're not letting games be decided on the field.
I heard a theory that Ohio State was penalized due to Urban Meyer's arrogance in the Zack Smith situation. I wouldn't rule that out. Why? Because it has nothing to do with the play on the field, and the NCAA loves to punish those with nothing to do with off the field offenses.
By the way. Why is ESPN wrong? I heard a second theory that ESPN props up the SEC as the best conference because the network and the conference have a contract together. The Big Ten has its own network. It is in ESPN's best interest to put 2 SEC teams in the final 4 and shut out other conferences, because if results were actually decided on the field, it could skewer ESPN's narrative that the SEC is the Best Conference.
I wouldn't discount that theory either.
Just for fun, let's take the Beacon of Speech Eye Test.
Below I see a picture of the College Football Committee....
Now let's see a picture of one of the best teams in college football.
Hmmm. Looking at the picture of the Clemson Football Captains, you would think that the public would be more angry that the college football champions aren't being decided on the field instead of behind closed doors in office meetings.....