Baylor held on to beat Oklahoma State 21-16 for the Big 12 Championship. What does this all mean for the College Football Playoff?
Baylor 21, Oklahoma State 16: What This Means For The College Football Playoff
5. Oklahoma State is now out, but …
As rough as this loss might have been, Oklahoma State will still likely find its way into a New Year’s Six game. It might not seem like much of a consolation prize, but it would still be a decent reward.
There’s a shot BYU would jump up and get in, but it’s more likely that the Cowboys will go to the Fiesta to – most likely – play Michigan State.
4. Cincinnati is now in with a win
The game is going on – or is over – as you’re reading this, so however this turns out, Cincinnati controls its own destiny. There won’t be any arguing over whether or not a Group of Five team can get into the College Football Playoff. The opportunity is all there for the Bearcats anymore. They got the break they needed.
3. Baylor goes to the Sugar Bowl
The Big 12 Champion goes to the Sugar Bowl if it’s not in the College Football Playoff – Baylor was almost certainly going to be here no matter what. There was an outside shot Oklahoma would’ve slid into the spot had Oklahoma State beaten Baylor in a blowout, but now it’s locked in.
The Bears will play someone from the SEC – likely Alabama, at least before the SEC Championship game kicks in. And no, Baylor likely isn’t going to get into the CFP because …
2. Remember, no two-loss team has ever made the College Football Playoff
Yeah, Baylor is a Power Five conference champion, but nah, it’s too big of a jump to go from 9 to 4 considering how much traffic is in the way.
Of course, the College Football Playoff committee throws out the previous rankings and starts over depending on who wins the conference championships and how, but the loss to TCU in early November basically ended that dream.
1. Hello, Notre Dame
You wanted your big break, Notre Dame? There’s one.
It’s going to take more than Oklahoma State losing to Baylor for the Irish to get in, but now there’s an opening. As this is being written, Cincinnati and Alabama are in their respective conference championship games. One of those two has to lose, otherwise Michigan has to drop the Big Ten Championship to Iowa for the Irish to get the call.
For now, though, new head coach Marcus Freeman got his first big win.