The Daily Player 12: Shakin' Out or Shakin' Loose
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When college football's Championship Week was introduced, the powers who mattered figured it would add a dramatic coda to the season.
Who knew the real climax would be the actual end of the regular season?
The lineup of traditional rivalries this coming weekend will determine who's gonna have the inside track in those conference title clashes, not to mention who's gonna have the inside track to the playoffs.
Crazy-cool stuff happens in rivalries because, among other things, many of the players know each other and their respective tendencies.
But while the unpredictable is poised to pop up anywhere, all the Big Ten needs to do is post results and eyebrows will be raised. It starts with the given that Penn State will deflate Michigan State, who likely blew their emotional wad when that late-game two-point conversion against Ohio State failed last week.
- That means even if Ohio State beats Michigan, the Buckeyes can't win the Eastern title because they lost to the Nittany Lions.
- Thus, they wouldn't appear in the Big Ten championship game.
Does the Selection Committee then pass over finalists Penn State and Wisconsin or Nebraska to put the Bucks in the bracket?
They've got two more weeks to factor in the possibilities, but right now, their projected answer is hell yes:
|1. Alabama||3. Michigan|
|2. Ohio State||4. Clemson|
|5. Washington||9. Colorado|
|6. Wisconsin||10. Oklahoma State|
|7. Penn State||11. Louisville|
|8. Oklahoma||12. USC|
The Committee's mandate is to rank each team's performance to its current point, so the hypotheticals are just that, as is their credibility.
Meanwhile, The Daily Player 12 just keeps cranking out the numbers based on a literal interpretaion of the Committee's criteria. For a full, virtually convolution-free look at the details, click here.
As for this week's list, check it out:
A few observations:
- The Wolverines are an underdog for the first time all season. Bovada officially has the game off its board due to Wilton Speight's status, but other houses are taking the Buckeyes and laying 6.5 points.
- Oklahoma State may take Bedlam, but as to their Central Michigan fiasco mitigating their argument as a bracket contender, the Committee has rightly decided that a loss is a loss.
- After being shredded by USC's Sam Darnold two weeks ago, Washington is no doubt poring over Colorado's video to see how the Buffaloes stopped Luke Falk ... as much as he can be stopped.
- The 24-team FCS field is set and ready to begin the real NCAA football playoffs. That's right. 24. All of whom played at least 11 games.