Nine top-25 teams lose on Saturday, which could help USC beyond the playoff

The College Football Playoff landscape just shifted drastically after Saturday’s wild slate of games.

Tennessee lost the top spot after falling to the Georgia Bulldogs (the Vols shouldn’t have been No. 1 anyway, or so one could argue). Alabama fell to LSU, and Clemson lost to Notre Dame in a series of games that will alter the next set of rankings drastically.

The USC Trojans and UCLA Bruins both won and should move up, although they might not move up all that much after not playing good games.

The new top 25 will change a lot, and it will be interesting to see how the newest CFP rankings change in a couple of days.

There is more to say about the changes in the rankings, which will affect a number of teams below the Trojans. This could mean something important for USC in the postseason, as we’ll explain below:

SHAKEN UP

DOMINOES TUMBLING

BOOM

DOUBLE BARRELED

PAC-12 GOT HELP

TCU HOPE

BUT TCU HAS A HARD PATH

MAYBE

NO DOUBT

THE PATH IS THERE

BETTER ODDS

HMMMMM

SCENARIOS

PROBABLY

TRUTH

NOT NECESSARILY, BUT MAYBE NOT TOTALLY IMPOSSIBLE

FAIR ENOUGH

INCREDIBLE

THIS IS VERY REALISTIC

THIS IS ENTIRELY REASONABLE

TRUE ENOUGH

BEYOND THE PLAYOFF

People are understandably thinking about the playoff and wondering what the odds are for USC and the Pac-12, but there’s an angle to all of this which goes beyond the playoff:

The New Year’s Six.

Let’s explain this:

WATCH THE TOP 12

At-large teams need to finish in the top 12 to be first in line for that at-large berth, which is in the Cotton Bowl this year.

Bama and Clemson losing helps USC’s playoff cause, but the losses to teams 13-23 (six different teams) create a vacuum below USC in the rankings. Teams battling USC for a top-12 ranking have tough games left.

COTTON BOWL

USC could lose one more time and still finish in the top 12, getting that Cotton Bowl invite. USC’s Cotton Bowl odds improved in Week 10 with all the carnage surrounding the Trojans.

WEEK 11: ALABAMA VS OLE MISS

One of these teams will lose on Nov. 12, further improving USC’s New Year’s Six position.

WEEK 11: UCF VS TULANE

One of these two ranked teams will lose on Nov. 12.

WEEK 11: NORTH CAROLINA VS WAKE FOREST

The Tar Heels, ranked inside the top 18, could lose this coming Saturday.

WEEK 11: TCU VS TEXAS

TCU could lose this coming Saturday, and since the Horned Frogs have Baylor one week after that, they could realistically finish with two losses this season.

So many dominoes have not fallen yet.

If USC finishes 10-2 or better, it could still end up with a Cotton Bowl bid.

Stay tuned.

Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire