US LBM Coaches Poll Week 12
USA TODAY’s Paul Myerberg breaks down this week’s US LBM Coaches Poll and discusses how the College Football Playoff Selection Committee should consider Washington for the number four spot.
Just when it seemed like College Football Playoff picture was all going according to plan, the developments of Week 12 have changed things drastically.
First, let’s get to the changes to the playoff field. Michigan’s struggle to defeat Maryland and questions about the impact of Jim Harbaugh’s absence have led to a new projection. Ohio State is moving up into the field and bumping down the Wolverines. Yes, the Buckeyes will have to win at the Big House this Saturday, but that’s seems more plausible than it did seven days ago.
The second major wrinkle comes with the injury to Florida State quarterback Jordan Travis which leaves the key play for the Seminoles out for the season. Tate Rodemaker was serviceable in relief against North Alabama. How he fares at Florida this week and then against Louisville in the ACC championship game will determine when Florida State can make its first playoff appearance since 2014. Winning those two should enough for the committee as it’s unlikely the Seminoles would be snubbed in a favor of a one-loss at-large team but winning with some style would assuage any concerns from the group deciding their fate.
BOWL PICTURE: Who’s in? Who’s out? Who is still alive?
A bit lower in the New Year’s Six race, there seems more clarity. Missouri’s narrow defeat of Florida and Penn State’s ranking ahead of Mississippi in the last release gives both schools a leg up on at-large spots. The Rebels and Oklahoma will be hoping for upsets that could create opportunity for them.
Reminder: Some conferences may not fulfill their bowl allotment. Asterisks denote a replacement pick. James Madison and Jacksonville State are eligible for a bowl if there are not enough six-win teams to fill all the spots. That appears likely with 15 places still available and only 24 teams capable of winning their way in.