Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel, and Sports Illustrated’s Pat Forde and Ross Dellenger discuss the latest College Football Playoff rankings, and debate if USC or TCU are in danger of dropping out of the top 4 with a loss on conference championship weekend.
DAN WETZEL: Bascially, SC's got a win, or they're out. I think USC has to win. TCU may not.
All right, well on the pod, we've got the penultimate college football playoff rankings. It's such a fun word.
PAT FORDE: I think they throw that in there in like all the releases because it sounds kind of dramatic.
DAN WETZEL: They do. They do. Number one, Georgia, held on. Held off Michigan, number two, Michigan. Number three, TCU. Southern Cal at four. Five is the Ohio State Buckeyes. Six is Alabama. Seven is Tennessee. And the Tennessee fans are just irate.
PAT FORDE: Oh, boy. They're on the muscle right now.
DAN WETZEL: We had Boo Corrigan, the NC State AD who has to be the pinata here. First, he made a calculated error in saying that the Ohio State and Alabama were locked in at five and six.
ROSS DELLENGER: Whoops.
DAN WETZEL: And presumably they are. Since neither play.
PAT FORDE: They really should be, right?
DAN WETZEL: Well, they don't like saying anything. This is just an exercise in folly.
PAT FORDE: Yeah, right.
DAN WETZEL: I mean, look, one, two, three, four are all playing games this weekend. Five, six, seven, eight, are not. Nobody can play their way in. So my theory is you can't play your way out this year. Boo Corrigan is oblivious to that concept. He called it a good opportunity for the top four teams and a bonus game.
ROSS DELLENGER: What if you lose?
DAN WETZEL: Only bad things can happen this weekend. There's no bonus.
PAT FORDE: There is one game in which somebody can gain something tangible here, and that's the American Athletic Conference Championship where the winner is going to a New Year's Six Bowl.
DAN WETZEL: Right.
PAT FORDE: Other than that, you're losing your way out of things. I mean, obviously, if you're Purdue, and you could win a Big Ten Championship, fine. But in terms of the playoff and the New Year's Six, you can only go down other than the American. That's it.
DAN WETZEL: I was going to go on the conference call but then I thought I'd get irate and do one of my rants that you've heard.
PAT FORDE: That would have been fun especially to see it transcribed.
DAN WETZEL: I'd be yelling.
ROSS DELLENGER: You irate? A rant? No.
DAN WETZEL: I'd just-- I'd be yelling at Boo Corrigan. I don't-- he's not a bad guy.
PAT FORDE: No, he's not.
DAN WETZEL: I don't need to do-- a bit, look, basically, SC's got to win, or they're out. The way I read it, I don't believe it, but I think USC has to win. TCU may not.
ROSS DELLENGER: Yeah, yeah, I think so. I think the rankings were basically no surprise at all really in the top, what, six, seven? You know, I think the biggest controversy really isn't that big at all. Because I don't think these either team has a chance to get in the top four. It's Alabama and Tennessee. And why Alabama's ranked in front of Tennessee, and like you mentioned earlier, the Vols fans are all hot about it. Because they beat Alabama.
Yes, Tennessee did beat Alabama at home on a last second field goal. It allowed, whatever, 46 points to Alabama, or whatever it was.
PAT FORDE: 49.
ROSS DELLENGER: And then I think Alabama probably would say, we didn't lose by four touchdowns to South Carolina. You know, so I think there's arguments on each side. But I think it all comes down to the Pac 12 Championship Game. If USC loses, I think they're probably out. And Ohio State is the fourth seed. If USC wins, they're in. And they're the fourth seed.
PAT FORDE: I mean, part of the fecklessness of this is you've just gone through this huge holistic exercise. And somebody who's a beat writer, and I understand the beat writers have all got their job, but it's like, what about Tennessee's resume against Alabama? And you're like, dude, I just looked at 25 resumes. What? What? Oh, yeah, they're-- I mean it's like I understand it's a tough position to be in. But that's what the television show is all about, making that guy look bad.
DAN WETZEL: Well, they'll say, like, we had extensive discussion over whether UCF or North Carolina should be 22 or 23. And you're like really? What would that entail? That's the boringest conversation I've ever heard of.
PAT FORDE: Yeah, three hours later, you hate yourself for having had that conversation.
DAN WETZEL: Yeah. I don't care who's 23. All right, so if TCU loses, they would be losing to the number 10 team in the country at a neutral site. So like a TCU loss to Kansas State wouldn't really even be that bad, would it?
PAT FORDE: I think that was one of the bigger developments actually. Is K State being in the top 10, moving up two spots to be 10th, being the top three loss team.
DAN WETZEL: Yeah.
PAT FORDE: I think they've paved the way for TCU to lose and still be in this thing. It's not a bad loss unless you lose by 28 points.
ROSS DELLENGER: Well, and if you lose badly, and USC wins, then they probably would just flip, right?
PAT FORDE: Yeah, but you maybe don't fall out, right?
ROSS DELLENGER: Flip three and four.
PAT FORDE: Right. Yeah.