Every day for the entirety of the Ohio State football season, we will be asking and answering questions about the team, college football, and anything else on our collective minds of varying degrees of importance. If you have a question that you would like to ask, you can tweet us @LandGrant33 or if you need more than 280 characters, send an email HERE.
The college football season is officially underway now that we are through the first few games of Week 0 (is it ok to feel bad for Nebraska fans?). So, we wanted to bring you the results from the latest national SBNation Reacts survey that looked at the College Football Playoff situation heading into the season.
Question 1: Who will win the CFP championship?
I would love to be able to come into the venerated pages of Land-Grant Holy Land and rail against the group-think, bandwagon sheeple of college football who just pick Alabama as the top team in the country out of habit, despite the Ohio State Buckeyes being obviously the better team this season... but I simply can’t.
There is no reason, in my opinion, to ever pick against Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide, especially in the preseason. It is simply just strong strategic prognosticating to pick the best program in the history of the sport. So, I don’t begrudge anyone who went with the Tide here.
However, I (unsurprisingly) picked the Buckeyes. And that’s not just me being the homer that I am often wont to be, I actually put my money where my mouth is. Last month when I was visiting my sister in Las Vegas, I placed a cool hundo on Ohio State to win the national championship.
I got it at +350, but perhaps the weight of my betting knowledge moved the line as DraftKings Sportsbook currently has the Buckeyes at +300. Ryan Day’s squad is second behind ‘Bama (+175). Defending national champion Georgia Bulldogs is in third at +400, followed by Clemson (+1000) and Desmond Howard’s national champion Texas A&M and USC tied for fifth at +2500.
The Buckeyes’ rivals are tied for seventh with Oklahoma at +4000, but even with those odds, it is absolute insanity to put any substantive amount of money on them. Despite making it to the CFP last season, TTUN is not ready to compete with the best programs in the country, especially when they’d have to win four straight games against quality competition over teams of dramatically varying styles and skill sets.
Ohio State’s Week 1 opponent, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish come in eighth at +4500 with Wisconsin (+8000), Penn State (+10000), and Michigan State (+12000) also representing the Big Ten in the top 20.
Question 2: Which team ranked 5-10 has the best chance of making the CFP?
Even before last January’s Rose Bowl, I was impressed with Utah, and the team’s performance in the Grandaddy of them All did nothing to dissuade me of that opinion. So I’m very good with this selection, especially because USC is gobbling up all of the attention the Pac-12, making it a bit easier for the Utes to sneak up on folks.
If history has taught us anything, the eventual CFP field will not consist of the top-4 teams in the preseason rankings and/or odds. So, there will almost assuredly be one team — if not more — who are not Alabama, Ohio State, Georgia, and Clemson making the final four.
I’ve already told you that I can’t see TTUN winning the national title, and there is no way that I would predict them to beat Ohio State two years in a row, so they’re out. I will be picking OSU to be ND by at least 17 points this coming week, so I think that they will be behind the 8 ball, but given how enamored everyone in college football is with the mythos of Notre Dame football, they could still get in; especially since they play so many games against the FCS teams of the ACC.
That’s actually a cheap shot, the Domers have a decently difficult schedule this season; in addition to the game in Columbus next weekend, they play at North Carolina, at No. 25 BYU, and at No. 14 USC, while also hosting No. 4 Clemson. So, if they can finish the season at 11-1, I would expect them to make the CFP... I just don’t expect them to go 11-1.
Since Desmond Howard picked the Aggies to win it all, that automatically disqualifies them from contention, and I just don’t see anyone from the Big 12 making it out unscathed enough to warrant inclusion. So, again, I’m good riding with the Utes.
Question 3: Which team currently in the AP Top 4 is most likely to miss the CFP?
lol, yeah, that’s an easy one.
Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.