It’s week 10, which means we now get our first look at how the CFB Playoff committee is leaning. We also get to see just how much work the Big 12 has cut out for them, if the conference is going to put a team into the playoff. Turns out, quite a bit.
First, here’s the rankings, and then I’ll follow with some thoughts.
— CFBPlayoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 1, 2016
The Big 12 as a whole is ranked about where they conference should be. I have a few issues with specific rankings, but as a whole, I wouldn’t expect them much higher.
Oklahoma carries the torch for the Big 12 at 14th. It’s also one spot above Colorado, which is good. If Washington stumbles, there’s a good chance the Big 12 champion could be ranked higher, especially if that champion is the Sooners.
Someone explain to me how Baylor is ranked over West Virginia? They have the same record, yet WVU’s has come against better competition. The Mountaineers also have the better loss.
Why are we talking about good losses? What has the playoff done to us? I feel like I need a shower.
Texas A&M in fourth over Washington is a bit concerning. The Huskies are undefeated and the clear Pac-12 favorite. In the past the committee has placed extra value on being a conference champion, something Texas A&M would not be if Alabama is indeed the first team in. The committee could be setting the stage for a conference runner-up to bump the Pac-12 or Big 12 champion. Texas Tech athletic director, and Big 12 representative to the College Football Playoff Committee, Kirby Hocutt was asked by ESPN about A&M being 4th over Washington, to which he replied it was because of A&M’s strength of schedule. That’s fine I guess, but uh, how Baylor ranked over West Virginia then?
The committee seems to not be holding the Central Michigan loss against Oklahoma State. However, if the Cowboys win the conference, they’ll need a lot of help from Baylor to make the playoff. They can’t afford having two bad losses on the schedule.
These don’t mean much right now, except for that they kind of do. Look at Penn State, 20th in the AP Poll, but 12th in the rankings. How teams are ranked now determines how wins and losses are viewed. A win over number 12 looks a lot better than that over number 20. And vise versa. If Oklahoma were to play West Virginia next week and beat them, that would just be a win over number 20. But they are only number 20, because that’s where the committee put them. WVU is much higher in both the AP (14th) and the Coaches (15th) poll. Basically, it’s all arbitrary, and if the committee wanted to, it would not be hard for them to manipulate the system.