For the rest of the regular season, it’s all about the Big Ten

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer instructs his team against Nebraska during an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)

“This way to the playoffs, men.” (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)

This is the South. The South rules college football. (Of the past 10 national champions, eight hailed from the SEC and a ninth from the ACC. Two of the past three title games have matched SEC and ACC.) For the next 17 days, the South will not — repeat, will not — be the epicenter of our One True Sport.

The three biggest games remaining on the college grid sked:

— Michigan at Ohio State, Nov. 26.

— Minnesota at Wisconsin, same day.

— The Big Ten title tilt in Indianapolis, Dec. 3.

The College Football Playoff rankings released Tuesday underscored what many among us thought: There’s a very good chance two Big Ten teams will crack the final four. As is, four Big Tenners are among the top eight. Ohio State is No. 2 to Michigan’s No. 3, meaning one will eliminate the other. Wisconsin is No. 7 to Penn State’s No. 8, and if each wins its final two regular-season games — and each should — they’ll play for the Big Ten championship.

If Penn State beats Wisconsin, it will have another signature victory to place alongside its upset of Ohio State. If Wisconsin beats Penn State, it will have a third S.V. to go with wins over LSU and Nebraska. I’m not absolutely certain the Nittany Lions would jump ahead of Louisville (No. 5 at the moment) if they become Big Ten champs; I’m pretty sure the Badgers would.

Regarding the Cardinals: The belief remains as it was when the first set of rankings were revealed — Louisville is a good-looking team that has no clear path to the playoff. Unless Clemson loses to Wake Forest on Saturday, U of L cannot play for the ACC title. Even if it wins in Houston on Thursday and beats Kentucky on Nov. 26, the Cards will finish 11-1 with only one move-the-needle victory, that over Florida State (which has since lost twice more) on Sept. 17.

Washington is No. 6. The fourth-biggest game left is the Huskies’ date with Washington State the day after Thanksgiving. Should U-Dub win in Pullman — and that’s no given; the men of Mike Leach are 8-2 — it will play for the Pac-12 title, which would become the fifth-biggest remaining game.

If Colorado, which is No. 10, beats Washington State and Utah these next two weeks, it will win the Pac-12 South. If it beats Washington/Washington State for the conference title, it will have a modest claim for playoff inclusion. But the Buffaloes have two losses — at Michigan, at USC — and really only one solid win (at Stanford). It’s not a lock that a once-beaten Pac-12 champ would make the CFP over a twice-beaten Big Ten titlist (meaning Wisconsin or Penn State); it would be a shock if a twice-beaten Pac-12 champ did.

As for the Big 12: I still don’t see a way any team from that conference makes it, not even a two-loss Oklahoma. Here’s how highly the committee values the Big 12: Once-beaten West Virginia is ranked No. 14, behind six two-loss teams and one three-loss team.

Even if Alabama loses a game, which it won’t, it will make the playoff. Even if Clemson loses another game, which it shouldn’t, it will make the playoff. There’s half your field. Barring a major upset — Rutgers or Michigan State over Penn State, Purdue or Minnesota over Wisconsin — and assuming Ohio State beats Michigan in Columbus, the Big Ten championship will become a playoff play-in, even with the Buckeyes sitting at home.

As much weight as the CFP places on being a conference champ, Ohio State can beat Michigan — the Buckeyes would then have victories over Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Nebraska and the Wolverines — and not have to worry. They’d surely be the No. 2 seed without having to risk a loss in Indy. I’d imagine Urban Meyer would take a win over Harbaugh and let it ride.

Reader Comments 0

167 comments
TideDawg
TideDawg

OH:IO butt-eye! You're suffering from "Dawg Obsession". You need to see someone. Would you like for me to recommend a therapist? A therapist can also help you with your "straight from the gutter" vocabulary.

Mulk
Mulk

Guys,


What is happening to my posts when I get the "error try again" message? I have been trying to post for 2 days?

TOJacket
TOJacket

That happened to me a few weeks ago. I started logging out and back in and it helped.

Mulk
Mulk

@DawgNole


You probably don't want to hear this but I used TO's suggestion about logging out and back in. It worked.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@Mulk

Happens regularly--even when there is no error.

More AJC technical issues, which seem never to be addressed.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@Mulk

Point is that you shouldn't have to log out and back in again, and you shouldn't get bogus error messages in the first place.

When I get the ones you mentioned, my comments post anyway, so I just ignore them.

Tonight, on the other hand, comments are requiring minutes, rather than seconds, to post--if they post at all. Yet another AJC glitch.

Mulk
Mulk

How did the B1G wrestle the bragging rights away from the SEC? Is it the committee make up?

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

UGA 1 and little ten bucky zero! On the field.

UGA 1 and Penn State zero in 2016. On the field.

Penn State 1 and little ten bucky zero in 2016. On the field.

SEC east 2 and ACC coastal 1 in 2016. On the field.

On the field is what counts TOHIO. Not all your mythical scenarios and garbage ground hog day posts.

Sound you hear is mic hitting the floor

Pain you feel is being taken to the woodshed AGAIN!

#dawgpromoter

TOJacket
TOJacket

Your mama needs to put you to bed earlier!

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

TOHIO scarred for life now dawg poster for life!

Hahahahaha

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Keep posting TOHIO. 24/7 relevance in your head.

Hahaha what a life you lead obsessed with UGA.

OH:IO
OH:IO

Ohio State and Louisville are in much different positions

Both teams are 9-1 with their only losses to fellow Top 10 teams. And both teams could win out and not play for their conference championship. Were that to happen, though, it’s hard to imagine the committee won’t keep No. 2 Ohio State in the top four given it can add a win over No. 3 Michigan to its already impressive resume.


dogs?

TOJacket
TOJacket

And let's watch that mouth. Do you kiss Wally with that thing?

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

Hard to imagine???

Is that like you having a hard time imagining that your blowhards would lose to a 20-pt underDawg? Not one damn thing "already impressive" about that, lying hypocrite. Not one damn thing.

TOJacket
TOJacket

Really intelligent counter post Margaret.

OH:IO
OH:IO

Here is all prepubescent north of 5 or 6 needs to know:


dogs are un, irr and not


Un-ranked, Irrelevant and Not in the National conversation.


Note he attacks me but cannot defend the dogs on the National stage. 


He goes local down 316 to 85S to the Downtown Connector.  


#own







DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

He attacks you???

Awwwww, how sad.

Wonder why he does such an awful thing, lying hypocrite?

Could it possibly be because you spend your life insulting, berating, and belittling others on the AJC blogs? And then whine about it when it's thrown back in your lying, hypocritical face?

I'll bet you that's it, lying hypocrite. It's just gotta be!

Time to look in the ol' mirror again, whiner.

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

TOHIO must have been at the 1992/93 citrus bowl all decked out in buckeye gear only to watch his hero Herbie go down like a little bi@tch to Ray Goff and the dawgs.

From that day on he has sworn UGA as the reason his life sucks and the reason he fails at all things beyond being the fastest to show his @$$ on a dawg blog. Number 1 at that!

"The dawg fans taunted me and my buckeye sweater that read; me heart herbie. Me hate them forever!"

Scarred for life. 24/7 obsession! Dawgs most relevant team in the land!

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Hahahaha that one got TOHIO upset. Just like his dawg obsession.

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Loved seeing this week even the most dedicated tech fans (not TO aka not a fan just a hater) calling out blowhio for his immature posts and obsession over all things UGA.

24/7. Keep posting dawg promoter. Hahaha

OH:IO
OH:IO

@twelveofthirteen


The only thing dog related to promote is gym dogs and signing day. It all goes South after that. #UN

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Called aiut again TOHIO;

Why don't you tell the folks how you've resorted to moaning about how you bravely defend yourself against "personal attacks" on here--all the while "having fun" berating others by calling them losers, delusional, whiners, morbidly obese, etc.?

Well, go ahead--tell 'em, coward!

TOJacket
TOJacket

Don't forget stupid....stupid.

OH:IO
OH:IO

@TOJacket


I question if he knows the definition of morbidly. 



twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

But but but all you post about is football????

So mature TOHIO.

Some post about teams, games, and conferences. Others, well they post mean things. Wah wah wah!

hypocrite!

OH:IO
OH:IO

One more point, bush. There are plenty of first round picks in 2-3 years but there are not 12 junior/senior first round picks on this roster. 

OH:IO
OH:IO

"Is ohiostate really that good a football team or does most of the B1G stink on Ice?"


-Bush


If that were the case the B1G would not hold 4 of the top 8. If  that is the case, the SEC! SEC! really stinks on ice.  

TOJacket
TOJacket

So would Vandy. Ky. SC Mizzou

Buschleaguer
Buschleaguer

@OH:IO When every team in the B1G can count on two Non Conference breathers and 2 or 3 B1G breathers it becomes too easy to post 10-1 and 9-2 records. Rutgers ,Maryland , Purdue would likely be winless in any power five conference.

OH:IO
OH:IO

@Buschleaguer @OH:IO


Boo hoo hoo. The SEC! SEC! only plays 8 conference and 4 non cons - 3 or 4 of which are cupcakes.


The SEC! SEC! Least historically included two gimmies with Vanderbilt and Kentucky. SC has been a joke lately and TN has been a joke lately.


So, I'll give you Purdue, Rutgers and Maryland for Vandy, Kentucky and SC and we'll call it even. 


P.S. I'm pulling for Chattanooga to upset Bama. 

Buschleaguer
Buschleaguer

@OH:IO

No need to BOO HOO the facts really don't lie.I doubt Rutgers could beat ULL much less a SEC team, Maryland and Purdue slight favorite over ULL. No the bottom feeders in the B1G this year really suck. No sugar coating it, they are the worst three teams in the Power 5.Sparty this year same class as your bottom three ,hate it for them .Hope they bounce back next year.

OH:IO
OH:IO

@Buschleaguer @OH:IO



Rutgers losing to UL LA LA. That's like arguing that Bama would be the Brown. I saw Cleveland would spot Bama 27. 


Three worst on Power 5? Don't know about that. 


I am surprised about Sparty this year. They'll be back. 

TOJacket
TOJacket

Yea right. Check the books, we haven't lost to Vandy at BDS in a long long time. Our signature win is Vt. If we beat the dawgs it will still be VT. And then Vandy. Lol

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

Bama would "be the Brown"???

STILL waiting, lying hypocrite.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO: "The SEC! SEC! only plays 8 conference and 4 non cons - 3 or 4 of which are cupcakes."

_________________

Name one--just one--SEC team that plays "4 non con cupcakes," lying hypocrite!

Well, I'll be damned--can't do it, can you? 

Lying hypocrites have a problem with the truth.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket: "Check the books, we haven't lost to Vandy at BDS in a long long time."

_______________

Oops, you slyly forgot to mention that you've played them less than a handful of times altogether over the past FIFTY YEARS!

No wonder you haven't lost to them at BDS in a while.

You're getting as bad as your lover boy oh:io with your careful omission of relevant facts.

TOJacket
TOJacket

Guess we've owned the SEC for the last 2 years huh?

TOJacket
TOJacket

I'm just saying when we play Vandy we evpect to win and big...dawgs crapped their pants. Heck we're 3-1 against the SEC in the last 2 years.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket

You "evpect" to win??? Amazing. Your phone again, right?

Would you care to compare the Dawgs' W-L record against Vandy with yours?

Don't think you want to go there, silly boy.


DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket

Is that anything like being owned by UGA for 13 of the past 15 years?