College Football Playoff Schedule: Who’s In, Who’s Out, and Why?

Everyone knew that Alabama and Clemson were going to be a part of the College Football Playoff schedule, where it got dicey was in regards to deciding the final two teams.

Ohio State seemed to be a lock, even after an unimpressive B1G Conference Championship win over Northwestern and despite the fact that they only played 6 games this year.

Arguments could’ve been made for both Texas A&M and Notre Dame to be added to the College Football Playoff Schedule. But in the end, only one could make it.

Both teams had one loss during this season that was strongly affected by the virus. TAMU’s only defeat came early in the year to Alabama. Notre Dame couldn’t repeat their previous victory of Clemson and lost to the Tigers in their ACC title game re-match.

The Aggies ran off seven straight SEC victories, including a win against a tough Florida Gators team. But in the end, the CFP Selection Committee valued Notre Dame’s schedule, victories, and on-field performance over that of Texas A&M.

The official College Football Playoff rankings are:

  1. Alabama
  2. Clemson
  3. Ohio State
  4. Notre Dame

It seems as though the fact that Notre Dame did end up making it to their conference championship held more weight than Texas A&M losing to the SEC Champ earlier in the season. This has been a heavily weighted factor for the committee in past seasons, adding a major emphasis on at least making it to your conference championship.

TAMU did follow up their only loss with a victory over Florida, who at the time was ranked #7. The Aggies never got a shot at the Crimson Tide in the SEC championship game because A&M and ‘Bama both play in the SEC West division.

One thing to be considered here is that not every conference decided who will play in their title matchups in the same manner. The SEC takes the top teams from their divisions, as does the PAC-12, B1G, and usually, the ACC.

This year, however, there were no divisions in the ACC, and the teams with the two best rankings made the game. Texas A&M would have made it, had the SEC abandoned the divisional rankings.

That didn’t happen, however, and the Aggies were the first team left out of the top four, and the first one-loss SEC team to not make the College Football Playoff since its inception.

College Football Playoff Schedule

The College Football Playoff Schedule will be played like this:

The #2 Clemson Tigers will take on the #3 Ohio State Buckeyes in the Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on January 1st, 2021.

The #1 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide will play the #4 ranked, Notre Dame Fighting Irish. This game was supposed to be in the Rose Bowl but has been moved to AT&T Stadium in Texas due to COVD-19. This one is also on New Year’s Day.

Every year we have situations like this, where we have reasons for multiple teams to have made the top four. It’s happened every year since the champion was decided by a poll, not just since we have had a committee and the College Football Playoffs. Objectivity, is, has been, and probably always will be a part of deciding the College Football Playoff Schedule.

This year was be no different. The committee made its decision based on the criteria that they have. Something to keep in mind, however, is that Notre Dame may finally have a big reason to officially join a conference in football. Joining the ACC this year allowed them to go up against Clemson(twice), among others–and that certainly had to help their case.

Thanks for reading my article on the College Football Playoff Schedule. Follow me on Twitter @davisjosh20 for more of my content

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Josh Davis
Content creator, that lives in Virginia Beach. Father of 3 amazing girls, lover of all things football. Trying to add my voice to the mix.

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