Bad News, Alabama: Criteria For Picking 4 Playoff Teams Does Not Include Blowout Losses

Bad News, Alabama: Criteria For Picking 4 Playoff Teams Does Not Include Blowout Losses

NCAAF

Bad News, Alabama: Criteria For Picking 4 Playoff Teams Does Not Include Blowout Losses

Alabama fans didn’t seem to like this fact-based post that pitted Alabama’s resume against Ohio State’s. It’s understandable – the Tide are in the clubhouse, their season over, and the only way they’re going to get into the playoff is with major help.

Their path is as follows:
* TCU beats Oklahoma and the committee picks Alabama
* Miami beats Clemson and the committee picks Alabama

I think the latter is not a given, but I give the Hurricanes 0% chance to beat Clemson, so it’s not worth diving into.

Yet still, Alabama fans are stuck on Ohio State’s 55-24 blowout loss to Iowa. It was a bad loss. On the road. To a 7-5 team. (Alabama went on the road and narrowly beat 7-5 Texas A&M, for what it’s worth.)

Let’s take a look at the committee’s playoff criteria, which it listed on its website. Maybe it will help us figure out where “blowout loss” fits into this discussion.

Hmmmm.

Ohio State, with a win over Wisconsin, will have a championship. Alabama won’t.

Strength of Schedule: With a win over Wisconsin, and also wins over Michigan State, Michigan and Penn State, Ohio State will top Alabama’s strength of schedule.

There was no head-to-head.

Alabama and Ohio State had no common opponents.

Everyone is getting hung up on Ohio State getting in last year despite not winning the Big 10. That’s where strength of schedule comes in. Last year they had four wins over Top 15 teams (at the time): Oklahoma (in Norman), Wisconsin (in Madison), Nebraska, Michigan. Here’s how those teams ended the regular season:

Oklahoma 9th, 9-2
Wisconsin 6th, 10-2
Nebraska NR, 9-3
Michigan 5th, 10-2

Alabama doesn’t have a resume in 2017 that sniffs that.

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