Back with another edition of the College Football Playoff Hierarchy. It’s true that the official rankings have been released twice now, but those are based on where teams are right now, not projecting the playoff when the season ends. Why would anyone care who would be in the playoffs if the season ended today? It’s one thing in a sport like baseball where there are 162 games and one single game isn’t guaranteed to make an impact. But when it comes to college football, the circumstances are different.
Instead, the best way to understand what is going on is just keep the cheatsheet below handy. One-loss Notre Dame was neglectfully left off of the first list a couple of weeks ago. Anything that is no longer possible is crossed off.
|1||Undefeated SEC champion||Mississippi St.|
|2||Undefeated Florida St.||FSU|
|3||1-loss SEC champion||Mississippi St., Alabama/Auburn|
|6||1-loss Pac 12 champ||Oregon, Arizona St.|
|7||1-loss Big Ten champ||Michigan St./Ohio St./Nebraska|
|8||1-loss Notre Dame||Notre Dame|
|9||2-loss SEC champ||7 teams|
|10||1-loss SEC at-large||Mississippi St., Alabama/Auburn|
|11||1-loss Big 12 champ||Baylor, Kansas St., TCU|
|12||2-loss Pac 12 champ||5 teams|
|13||1-loss ACC champ||Florida St., Duke|
|15||2-loss Big Ten champ||6 teams|
|16||2-loss Big 12 champ||4 teams|
|18||3-loss SEC champ||9 teams|