The college football season is winding down and we’re only a few weeks away from the first playoff instalment. What’s most likely to happen? We break it down for you!
The “college football playoff predictor” is a website that breaks down the most likely College Football Playoff combinations.
Let’s chat about the College Football Playoff pairings.
With the playoff picture beginning to take shape, there are a few playoff foursomes that have a good chance of materializing. According to the Allstate Playoff Predictor, the most probable combination of four teams chosen by the playoff committee — more on that in a minute — has a 1-in-10 probability of happening. There are currently seven combinations with a 1-in-20 chance of being successful.
So let’s have a look at them one by one. What are the most possible four-team playoff combinations, how likely are they, and how do those combinations end up being the one chosen on selection day? These combinations hold true independent of the seeding order of the four. The teams are arranged alphabetically below.
Alabama, Cincinnati, Georgia, and Oklahoma are the first three places on the list. Probability of occurrence: 10%
Cincinnati has come a long way. The predictor was very pessimistic about the Bearcats heading into the season, giving them less than a 1% chance of making the playoffs. Is it possible to blame the model? The committee has repeatedly shown that even an unbeaten Group of 5 squad would have a difficult time getting into the top four. We haven’t yet seen the committee’s rankings for this year, but it seems to be different this time.
According to the Football Power Index, Cincinnati is the sixth-best team in the nation and has a 54 percent probability of finishing unbeaten, which is better than any other undefeated club. If it happens, the Bearcats will be ranked fourth in strength of schedule — and that’s the important one. Despite the fact that the AP poll is not the committee, it can’t hurt that Cincinnati is already gaining a lot of respect from those voters, who have the Bearcats ranked second.
So, how did this particular bunch get in? The most apparent scenario is for Cincinnati, Oklahoma, and Alabama to win out, with Georgia losing only in the SEC title game to Alabama, and a two-loss Big Ten champion.
Even though the predictor believes that one-loss Ohio State is a university in the state of Ohio is a university in the state of Ohio is a university in the state of Ohio is a university in the state of Ohio should be ahead of unbeaten Cincinnati in the standings, the latter is more than twice as likely to happen. With five teams vying for four berths, a one-loss Big Ten champion Michigan would throw the picture into disarray.
Finally, if we switch to the SEC, might this matchup occur if Georgia defeats Alabama for the second time in the SEC title game? That would almost certainly need a little more upheaval, but it seems to be doable.
2. Cincinnati (Ohio), Georgia (Georgia), Michigan (Michigan), and Oklahoma Probability of occurrence: 7%
After the first combination, this is quite straightforward. Oklahoma and Cincinnati win out, while Georgia and Michigan win the SEC this time.
Even if Michigan or Oklahoma lost, would they be able to qualify? Yes, most certainly. The only uncertainty would be if Alabama defeated Georgia and Cincinnati won out, leaving five teams competing for four berths, and it’s unknown which way the committee would tilt in selecting the odd team out.
Georgia appears in each of the College Football Playoff’s seven most probable scenarios. Getty Images/Brett Davis
3. The cities of Cincinnati, Georgia, and Ohio State, as well as the state of Oklahoma Probability of occurrence: 7%
The only difference is that Ohio State replaces Michigan in this pairing. The Buckeyes, of course, have already lost one game and can’t afford to lose another. However, since Ohio State is a superior team and is somewhat favored in their game at the Big House, this has about the same chance of happening as the version with Michigan, which is presently unbeaten.
Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, and Oklahoma are the fourth and fifth states, respectively. Probability of occurrence: 6%
A similar set of conditions occurred in this example to the ones we’ve been examining, but one of two things happened. Either:
1. Cincinnati was defeated or…
2. The committee’s contempt for the Group of 5 is unwavering.
Either scenario is possible.
Alabama, Cincinnati, Georgia, and Ohio are the top five. State Probability of occurrence: 6%
When Oklahoma goes up in flames, this is what happens.
Is it necessary for this same quartet to lose two games for the Sooners to be selected? Probably, but not without a chance?
A champion with just one defeat In the eyes of the forecaster, Ohio State is ahead of a one-loss champion Oklahoma. A one-loss Oklahoma would very certainly face an unbeaten Cincinnati and a non-champion, one-loss Georgia, and here is where things become fuzzy once again. It’s also a circumstance when the predictor can’t make a particular decision since it’s too improbable to happen.
Alabama, Georgia, Ohio State, and Oklahoma are the top six teams in the country. Probability of occurrence: 6%
Replace Michigan with Ohio State in combination #4.
Alabama, Cincinnati, Georgia, and Michigan are the top seven. Probability of occurrence: 5%
Replace Ohio State with Michigan in combination No. 5.
There’s a massive drop-off after the seventh-most common scenario: every subsequent combination has less than a 2% probability of happening. You’re correct if you assume they are all the same teams that have been reshuffled about. These teams are also included in the eighth and ninth most probable combinations. Who will be the next squad to enter the fray? Pitt is the character in question. We previously discussed why the Panthers are a long shot to make the playoffs. Pitt cracks the tenth-most probable playoff combo heading into a crucial game against Clemson.
The most probable scenarios for the College Football Playoff
|Team 1||Team 2||Team 3||Team 4||Chance|
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