Tag Archives: Football

Manziel vs Mayfield: a tale of arrest records, public scrutiny, and Heisman trophies

With the NFL Draft approaching in the next couple months, there has been a lot of comparisons made between two certain quarterbacks: Johnny Manziel and Baker Mayfield. In this article, I’m going to present the similarities and differences between the two QB’s, and tell you why they are two very different players.

If you’re wondering what gives me the right to compare the two, let me tell you.

I’m a Longhorn. I’ve been a Longhorn since birth. I’m a freshman at UT now, and when it comes to football I know two things for sure. 1. OU sucks, and 2. it’s Goodbye to A&M. In that case, I’m writing this from what I have witnessed with my own eyes, researched and heard about both of these two quarterbacks.

First, I’ll go into some background about the two.

Johnny Manziel played two years at Texas A&M before being drafted with the 22nd pick in the NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. He led A&M to a 20-6 career record, a Cotton Bowl and a Chick-Fil-A Bowl win. He played two years with the Browns until his very public downward spiral of drugs and alcohol addiction sent him from the field into rehab.

Baker Mayfield began his career as a walk-on quarterback at Texas Tech before transferring to Oklahoma to finish his college career as a Sooner. He finished with a 34-6 career record and led Oklahoma to its first College Football Playoff birth and in the upcoming 2018 NFL Draft, Mayfield is projected to be a top 1st Round Pick.

Now lets dive into their similarities and differences.

Here is how the two are similar:

Coming out of high school both Manziel and Mayfield were listed as 3-Star recruits by 247Sports.com. As we’ve all seen before, recruiting rank does not mean define a player as both went on to be AP Player of the Year, All-American Honors, Davey O’Brien Award winners, Offensive Player of the Year in their respective conferences, and of course, winners of the Heisman Memorial Trophy.

On and off the field, both players have had their share of disruptive behavior.

Manziel:

Before his first collegiate game on June 29, 2012, Manziel was arrested and charged with three misdemeanors. Disorderly conduct, failure to produce identification and having a fake driver’s license. Along with this “instance”, it’s also known that he left the Manning Passing Academy early, a place where top high school QB’s come and showcase their talents, allegedly due to him oversleeping and missing part of the course.

Mayfield:

During the 2017 offseason, Mayfield was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, fleeing and resisting arrest and public intoxication.

Mayfield has had less trouble off the field than Manziel, but on the field, some critics question his antics from this past season. On the road facing Ohio State in the second game of the year, Mayfield planted the Oklahoma flag at midfield of Buckeye Stadium after defeating Ohio State 31-16. Then, later in the season against Kansas, Mayfield grabbed his nuts and was caught shouting swear words at the Jayhawk sideline.

Now here’s how these two guys differentiate themselves from one another:

In college, their styles of play were very different and regardless of their size comparisons, they are not the same.

Manziel was more reliant on his running abilities. He had star receiver Mike Evans (ever heard of him?) as his number one threat down the field. Throw the ball up to him and it’s caught. I remember watching a game against Alabama where Manziel scrambled all around the line of scrimmage finally heaving it up to Evans for a 50-something yard completion. THAT DOES NOT HAPPEN IN THE NFL. Johnny may have been a good enough athlete in college, but plays like that don’t happen in the NFL. They just don’t.

Johnny didn’t become “Johnny Heisman” by throwing the ball. His namesake came from dynamic running ability. In his TWO years at A&M, he ran for 2,169 yards and 30 touchdowns. Compared to Mayfield’s 893 yards and 18 TD’s in his THREE years at Oklahoma.

Mayfield relied on his gunslingin’ strong arm to lead him in his success. Don’t get me wrong, he could still make plays with his feet, but he’s the better passer. At Oklahoma, Mayfield passed for 12,292 yards, 119 touchdowns with only 21 interceptions. Let that sink in a little. The man can throw the rock. Manziel threw for basically half that, with 7,820 yards, 63 touchdowns and 22 interceptions. Mayfield threw for almost twice as many yards and touchdowns, and did it with less interceptions in three years, than Manziel did in two.

Now you’re probably wondering what do I think.

Honestly, when people say Baker Mayfield and Johnny Manziel are the same, I don’t buy it. Not one bit. Sure, they both have gotten into trouble, but when you look at what kind of players they are, it’s not even close. In my opinion Mayfield has shaped himself into a good mix of the new Pro-Style quarterback. The game is changing and more Russell Wilson type QB’s are emerging left and right. The league has changed from ground-and-pound, to pass-first and RPO. Mayfield is a baller. He’s a flat out competitor. That’s why he talks smack and does all his gestures. He just loves winning and I respect the hell out of that.

To all the NFL GM’s out there, don’t buy into the Manziel-Mayfield comparison. When given the opportunity, Baker Mayfield will take your organization to the next level.

Offseason Review: Detroit Lions

A new era has surfaced, and it starts with Mr. Graphite, A.K.A new Head Coach Matt Patricia. The wait is finally over as Detroit is believed to have found their guy. A disciple of the Bill Belichick coaching tree. While things haven’t panned out for most Belichick assistants, this one seems a little different. For starters, he didn’t get cold feet after the Patriots loss in Super Bowl 52 and return to the Pats (unlike Josh McD). He is his own man and it seems as if he is here to stay.

The NFL is a league of parody and when Lions general manager Bob Quinn decided to pull the trigger, it only made sense to hire one guy. People forget, Quinn joined the New England Patriots back in 2000 as a player personnel assistant, and gradually moved up to the director of pro scouting. The rest is history as he was signed in 2016 as the next Lions GM.

Since Quinn has been in Detroit, he has done something that previous GM’s have not been able to do in the Motor City: put together a winning culture. Sure, with former Head Coach Jim Caldwell it had its hiccups, but he did manage to finish 36-28 in his four years as head coach. All in all, a change was needed and getting Matt Patricia seems like it could pay dividends and land them in uncharted territory with “the Patriot-Way.”

FREE AGENCY

LE’VEON BELL

The Lions are in an odd spot in the 2018 NFL Draft. They don’t have a sexy pick but what they do have is a ton of money they are looking to unload.

What to do with $47 million? I don’t know, maybe go after the best running back in the league. As free agency is getting closer, the Lions should be licking their chops to show Le’veon what being a Detroit Lion is all about.

The MSU alum should fit perfectly in their offensive game plan to relieve some pressure off Stafford. The Lions $135-million-dollar man cannot do it all by himself. He isn’t getting any younger. He needs help.

Their window is now. With Stafford in his prime and Marvin Jones Jr. locked up until 2020, if they can land someone like Bell, it would be a hell of a lot more enticing for Golden Tate to resign in 2019. Could you imagine that offense? Well I can, and with the right scheme and 3rd down play calling, Lions fans might be able to witness their first ever playoff win.

NIGEL BRADHAM

Please tell me you guys love athletic linebackers that can play both inside and out. One of the standouts on Philadelphia’s Super Bowl winning defense, Bradham displayed the physicality, cover skills and leadership to help a defense earn the title world champions.

“We drafted Jarrad Davis to be the future!” I know, I know. Imagine if you had someone that could teach Davis the character it takes to be a top linebacker in the league? Don’t get me wrong, Bradham isn’t a household name but my god if you watched the NFL this year, you would be able to witness some outstanding defensive intensity.

SIGN THIS MAN! WHAT A BEAST! Bob Quinn, if you have the chance to pair Nigel Bradham and Jarrad Davis together, do it. You’d be doing Detroit a wonderful service.

WARNING DO NOT TAG ZIGGY HE IS NOT WORTH THE HEADACHE

DRAFT

1st round, pick No. 20

Marcus Davenport, DE, UTSA

If the Lions do the smart thing and let Ziggy Ansah walk, Davenport seems to fit the mold of the the next generation of Defensive Ends. For god-sakes, the man is 6-7, 255 lbs. He’s a walking mammoth and could fit in beautifully with what Patricia is about to do with that defense. There is something recently about small-school guys panning out that I believe will happen again.

2nd round, pick No. 51

Maurice Hurst, DT, Michigan

Keep bringing the boys home! With their first two picks on the defensive side of the ball, it is clear what direction this team should be going in. Hopefully with these two picks, they are able to generate a pass rush that could help the corners out.

Defense wins championships repeat after me.

Lions fans, there is hope. Your fan-base has always stuck by their beloved team and its now their time to deliver. Philly broke the curse, why not you too?

In-State or Bust

With National Signing Day in the rear view mirror, and the Texas Longhorns finishing with the 3rd best class in the nation, I want to touch on something that I have noticed over the last five years. Over the last half-decade, there has been a trend beginning every February on NSD. The Longhorn football program has been overselling their incoming recruiting classes judging by the production on the field during the season. What has caused these so-called “top class” to fail:

TOP IN-STATE RECRUITS

How did I come to that conclusion so quickly? Well, here’s the deal. The State of Texas lives and breathes high school football. I mean come on, there was a freaking TV show about it. It’s the State of Texas. High School football is a religion here. It’s the best of the best. The talent level is through the roof. In the 2016 NFL season, a total of 214 players played their high school football in Texas. There’s little to no doubt that this state is made up of some of the most promising up-and-coming players in the country.

With that being said, there is no excuse that Texas has been unable to retain at least 50% of the Top 20 recruits in the State in recent years. Before I talk about now, let’s go back to the Class of 2010. Out of the top 20 recruits in the State of Texas, Mack Brown brought in a total of 10 recruits for the Longhorns. That’s what Texas has been missing in the recent years. In order for the Horns to be successful, they HAVE to and MUST win the in-state recruits.

Why do I say that? Here’s what was going on from 2013-2017 with the top 20 players in the State of Texas:

· Class of 2013, 3 signed went 8-5

· Class of 2014, 4 signed went 6-7

· Class of 2015, 6 signed went 5-7

· Class of 2016, 7 signed went 5-7

Then, in the Class of 2017… ZERO, NONE, NADA signed with the University of Texas at Austin. I get that Charlie Strong was fired, but still. It’s THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS. It’s a world-renowned university. You would think, you would hope, at least ONE of the Top 20 in the State would have wanted to be a Longhorn.

But now…. after waiting almost 5 years, Texas football is back baby. The Class of 2018 has garnered 10 signees from the Top 20 in the State. It appears Head Coach Tom Herman is bringing back the precedent set on recruiting in this state. It truly is second to none. And, when the top recruits are in your backyard, you go out and get them. That’s the philosophy Herman is following and will continue to follow for years to come.

Foles takes down the GOAT, Dynasty in Shambles

First off, I want to say that Super Bowl 52 lived up to everything it was hyped to be. I also want to say that first half was beautiful. Shoutout to the entire NBC team for putting on a great performance until they botched it with a nationwide blackout. But other than that, I thought it was great. Big week for NBC, first the Super Bowl then the entire Olympics?

Stock in NBC = very high

Now, let’s dig into the game. I’m still trying to digest what happened. Saint Nick took down the GOAT, the NFL has a number of issues they need to resolve, is the dynasty in shambles???

I’m not going to bore you with all the stupid catch rule stuff so I’ll just say this.

They need to define what is and is not a catch.

Saint Nick played the game of his life. Every single NFL team out there should send the Eagles an offer for him this offseason because he’s better than any qb in the league right now. He just won the Super Bowl. Don’t even think about arguing it.

Now, going off that. He will still be the backup next year. The Eagles got their win win situation. They just won their first Super Bowl, and did it without their franchise QB who, oh by the way, is just 25 years old.

I love what the Eagles have done with their team. I think they have the potential to be the next dynasty. They are loaded with young and under-contract talent, a hungry athletic defense, a QB with a very high ceiling and a great coaching staff who was able to adjust their system around their backup QB to win a Super Bowl.

There’s a lot of pressure on Wentz now, but I’ve never seen someone overcome as much as he has so I am sure he will be fine.

Now, let’s talk about the Pats and the endless pit of misery they are about to be swallowed by. First off, this is well deserved. I love Tom Brady as much as the next man but the Patriots as an organization deserve what is about to come their way.

They are no longer the Kings of the AFC because, well, the Eagles figured them out. Tom Brady is great because he makes his teammates around him better. But when his teammates aren’t there, it’s a bit of a different story. Julian Edelman was done for the season. Brandin Cooks is probably still dead and Gronk is still recovering from the concussion he received two weeks ago. So Chris Hogan, a former lacrosse player, has to step into the shoes of Edelman? It’s a band-aid solution. It’s patchwork. They said he’s the best we’ve got so lets see how it goes.

Not a terrible strategy as he played well through out the season. But he is still not Edelman, Cooks or Gronk.

Tom Brady is not the QB he once was. He is a robot now. Brady is the greatest Quarterback of all time and was never supposed to come within 1000 miles of that title. He is the epitome of greatness in every sense of the word and everyone, including himself, knows that. He doesn’t have to do anything else in his life because his legacy could never be tarnished, yet, he still decides to keep playing because he simply loves the game. He has perfected every aspect of the game and knows how to beat just about anybody.

Now, let me clarify. Brady has had the same guys for a very long time. It’s the same system and when someone gets hurt, it’s always been next man up. One of Belichek’s biggest slogans. But when those men don’t have the same robotic synchronization with the greatest QB to ever play the game, then its a very tough situation.

All the plays they scripted were centered around three people: Cooks, Gronk, and Amendola/Hogan.

Gronk had NO clue where he was last night. I’d be surprised if in 10 years he remembers a thing from that Super Bowl, and he still had 9 catches for 116 yards and two touchdowns. A great SB performance that will be forgotten by him in less than a decade. It is terrible but true. Head injuries are a very serious issue and another problem the NFL faces.

Cooks was their guy. They needed him to win that game and they knew it. I believe that if he wasn’t trying to do too much to extend the play and just took the first hit to the ground, the Patriots would have won that game. Classic example of players trying to do more than they need to and I am sure Belichek is LIVID over that.

After the birds took out their number one wide receiving threat, the Pats told a concussed Gronkowski, “here’s the play, use your 6’ 7” 270 pound frame and go do something.” It was visible that he was not at 100% mentally. I remember there was one seam route up the middle where Gronk was wide open but instead of coming back towards the middle he ran straight and the pass fell short. Robots don’t miss open seam throws over the middle. They just don’t. It’s been programmed inside their robot brains, since robots started playing football.

With Gronk a semi-scratch, they left the game up to Amendola and Hogan. Don’t get me wrong, both are good receivers when they have space, but neither of them are worthy of being Tom Brady’s number one option.

I do believe, and I know this is crazy, that TB12 can win another Super Bowl. But it HAS to be in the right circumstance and it HAS to be soon, otherwise him and the Patriots are done.

First off, they need to improve that defense. They need better athletes on the front line and in the secondary. The defense is their biggest weakness just because that offense is too lethal.

Second, they need to make the right coaching changes. They got gutted. No other way around it. McDaniels to the Colts and Patricia to the Lions are done deals. Whoever comes in next as OC has to adopt their system AROUND Brady. Not the other way around.

I’d like to see something different from that D than what Patricia has been doing. They need more talent on the opposing side of the ball because they got torched all year. Patricia never had to be the best defense, and he hasn’t needed it because their offense was so good. He’s always had good defenses, and in some circumstances, great ones, but this year’s team was not great by any meaning of the word.

Honestly, I know he’s been there and won it, but I don’t think he will make a great head coach in this league. It is an offensive minded league now, the game is changing. And it’s not like the Lions defense is great where a new face will push them over the edge.

Brady is now 40, so one wrong hit and his career could be over in a flash. Gronk is injured again and as great as he is, still can not seem to play a full season. Edelman, a 31 year-old is coming off an ACL injury which is never easy to recover from, and will no doubt see a step down in his performance next season. Then there’s Amendola who’s entire career no matter what team he’s been on has been cut short due to injuries.

I knew it was bad when Gronk came out last night and questioned his certainty to return to the game. I fully expect he will, but if he’s saying it, it’s definitely on his mind and something he’s thought about before.

Brady I expect to retire after next season. He will announce this offseason that these will be his final games and he’ll be given the full red-carpet treatment, and paraded around everywhere he goes as he very much deserves. But for him to go out a champion like Peyton Manning, they need to fix that defense right now.

Injuries and a lack of athleticism on D plagued the Pats all season long and it is incredible that they were able to do what they did this year overcoming that.

But it just wasn’t enough. This one is going to sit with Brady for a very long time because that game was totally out of his hands. He played possibly his best season (at 40) and best game he could have, but due to a long list of extranious factors he fell short in getting his sixth (I know I still struggle with it too) Super Bowl.

Hell of a game for Eagles Nation. Love what they’re doing with that team and that city and I expect big things in their future.

For Pats fans, you’ve had your fun. Take your rings and be happy. Praise the god that is Tom Brady and be happy with that. No complaints. Just love.

You Can’t Blame It All On Bill O’Brien

In Bill O’Brien’s first 3 seasons as the Head Coach of the Houston Texans, the defining factors have been instability at quarterback and injuries; though the Texans have finished (9-7) in each of the 3 seasons. Now in his 4th season sitting at (4-10), fans and critics believe this one will be his last.

It all began when Commissioner Roger Goodell announced the Houston Texans have traded with the Cleveland Browns for the #12 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. This was followed by words Texans fans have been waiting for since the “glory” days of David Carr. “The Houston Texans have selected Deshaun Watson, Quarterback, Clemson”. As Hall of Fame Head Coach Don Shula said, “Sure, luck means a lot in football. Not having a good quarterback is bad luck”. Finally, after having started more quarterbacks (9) than any other team since Bill O’Brien took over in 2014, Houston had found their franchise quarterback.

Fast-Forward prior to Week 1 when Bill O’Brien announced Tom Savage would be the Houston Texans starter. Of course, there were many who despised the decision; however, I was not one of them. I fully understood O’Brien’s reasoning. It can be compared to the situation involving Jared Goff in Los Angeles. Drafting a franchise quarterback is all about working towards the future. Give the rookie some time to watch and learn.

Nevertheless, Savage’s stint as the starting quarterback ended after losing the first game of the season to Jacksonville. After the game, Brian Cushing was suspended 10 games without pay for violating the NFL’s PED policy. Watson was named the starter for Week 2 and for the next six games he demonstrated to his teammates, the front office, and the fans that he was here to stay.

Sitting at 2-2 entering Week 5, the Houston Texans appeared to be getting better week after week. Unfortunately, this was the beginning of the end for the Texans 2017 season.

During Week 5 against Kansas City, 3-time Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt suffered a tibial plateau fracture in his left leg, which ended his 2017 season. It was the second year in a row Watt’s season has ended due to an injury. In the same game, 2016 2nd Team All-Pro Linebacker Whitney Mercilus suffered a torn pectoral ending his 2017 season as well. Tight Ends C.J. Fiedorowicz and Ryan Griffin who have a combined 9 years of NFL experience has been on injured reserve for the majority of the season.

After the Week 8 loss at Seattle, offensive tackle anchor Duane Brown was traded to the Seahawks after holding out of his contract desiring a higher salary. This led to a gaping hole in the offensive line unit, which allowed a season-high 10 sacks to Jacksonville in the season home opener.

Did the Committee Get it Right?

The picks are in: Clemson, Oklahoma, Georgia and Alabama are your top four teams in college football. The committee debated and made an absolute statement by putting Alabama in over Ohio State and here’s why:

When you take the two teams and compare their schedule, Ohio State has the wins. They have a statement win over Penn State, Michigan State and won their conference beating Wisconsin. Alabama has wins over LSU, Mississippi State, and (I will put it in there) Florida State. I know that FSU sucks this year and is in absolute disarray right now with Jimbo Fisher leaving but I still count that win because 1. Francois got hurt in the fourth quarter and the game had already been decided, and 2. If you watched that game Alabama absolutely beat up on Florida State especially while Francois was in. That game was a statement of itself and hurting Francois meant nothing in the outcome. With a healthy Francois I think FSU has the talent to be a top 10 team so hypothetically I’m throwing them in there, if you don’t want to that is understandable.

In the past the committee has stressed to get in you have to win your conference. I know Alabama didn’t win theirs. They didn’t even make it, I know that, but the committee knew what they were doing the whole time. If they wanted to give OSU a chance to make the playoff they would have moved them up further after the Michigan week. They were sitting at #9 that week, and if the committee felt they should be in they would’ve moved them up to #6 or #7, essentially making the Big Ten Championship a play-in game. They knew all along that OSU didn’t deserve to be in there because they had the Iowa game playing over and over in the back of their mind. Snubbed?? I would not say that. Unfortunate?? Definitely.

Here’s another reason they chose Alabama. MONEYYYY. Money makes the college football playoff go round. With all the controversy this year as to what teams should be in, I am positive that all of the games will break records in viewership.

Here’s an interesting little thought about the SEC championship game that a lot of people didn’t think about. Georgia lost to Auburn at Auburn, Georgia avenged that loss in Atlanta. So if you think about it, each team won on their home turf. So what then, round 3???? See who gets in? In a way, they did just that.

Alabama and Clemson will meet for the third time in a row and I can’t wait for the showdown. Personally I think Alabama is the best team in the country behind Clemson. I know I’m a little bias but I think they have too much talent and too good of a coach to not be. If you think Nick Saban is going to let Clemson walk all over them you’re just wrong. I expect an absolute bloodbath that game. There’s one reason Bama blew it late last year and that man is currently (well not exactly) playing on Sundays and his name is Deshaun Watson. Experience won in that case. Watson had been there before as a Sophomore against Bama and he lost. The next year against a true freshman Jalen Hurts he was not going to let the same thing happen. Now the roles are reversed. Hurts, a sophomore, played in the National Championship game last year and I can bet you he’ll use that experience to help him this time around. On the other hand, Kelly Bryant has never played in that big of a game before. However, he had sat behind Watson for quite some time and obviously didn’t miss a beat when they lost him to the draft. I think that was too good of a game to pass up and the committee knew that. 

I can’t wait for next year though to watch Georgia-Auburn part III because that’ll be a game for ages. An experienced Jake Fromm who already as a true freshman has taken the reigns from someone everyone thought was going to be a god, Jacob Eason, and took them to the CFP. Kirby Smart is the PERFECT fit for that school. Plus another year with Jarrett Stidham at Auburn and Gus Malzahn staying is going to be fun to watch so mark your calendars.

MY CFB PLAYOFF TOP 4

Let me just say that I am not a big fan of the way the college football playoff teams are selected. I don’t even know how I would fix it but I just don’t like it at all. I would love to make it an 8 team playoff and just stretch out the games an extra week, it would be an easy fix. There are more than 4 teams each year deserving to fight for the natty. Look at Penn State last year or USC, both teams coming into the postseason red hot but neither of them could make it due to losses in September. Just pick the 4 best teams and don’t look so much into all of the other politics of it. Here’s my top 4 after this weekend’s games

1. Alabama

I don’t even see an argument here. Even when Georgia was at 1 it didn’t make any sense. Bama is so obviously the best team in the country. They have the experience, the best coach in history, and the most amount of talent in the country. Bama faces a tough test next week against Auburn but even with a loss, they probably get in. That won’t be an issue though. Alabama will wipe the floor next week at the Iron Bowl and get ready for another top 10 face off with Georgia in the SEC Championship. All that Bama really has to do over the next 2 weeks is win 1 game and they’ll be in.

2. Oklahoma

I think there is something to say in the rankings for a team with the best player in the country (excluding Saquan Barkley). They have 1 loss to a very solid Iowa State team who has actually been surprisingly decent especially after they beat Oklahoma. The Sooners might not have the best defense but Baker Mayfield is literally never out of a game. They get West Virginia next weekend at home possibly without an injured Will Grier which won’t be a problem then the Big 12 title game against TCU most likely. Oklahoma should win out and get into the playoff and get the respect they and Baker deserve.

3. Clemson/Miami

These teams are completely interchangeable for me because they play in the ACC Championship in two weekends. Miami gets Pitt on Friday after Thanksgiving and Clemson gets a solid South Carolina team. Assuming neither of these teams trip up next weekend the winner of the ACC Championship game will get into the playoff. Even if Miami loses the ACC Championship and that is their only loss they’re not getting in as a 1 loss team most likely. Clemson will get in even with a horrible loss at Syracuse. That’s the Dabo effect and some recency bias. I love Miami but something tells me they can’t be counted on. I could totally see them losing to Pitt but if not Clemson should take care of them. Clemson will be in.

4. Ohio State/Wisconsin

Yeah, I can’t believe it either but I think Ohio State will sneak into the top 4. Lets see how: Ohio State will handle Michigan next weekend and Wisconsin will finish at 12-0 after wasting their time next Saturday against Minnesota. Wisconsin doesn’t seem legit to me; they have played absolutely no one and you can say they beat Michigan but that’s the only ranked team they’ve played, they played them at home, and Michigan was only ranked because of Jim Harbaugh’s presence. I can see Ohio State as a double digit favorite against Wisconsin in Indy and when Ohio State beats Wisconsin, the Badgers will be out of the playoff with that terrible strength of schedule. I think everyone can agree that a 2 loss Ohio State team is still better than a 1 loss Badger squad. Ohio State needs Bama to beat Auburn which will knock them out, Bama to beat Georgia in the SEC title game which would knock them out, and hope the committee sees them as better than either a 2 loss Clemson team (which they will) or a 1 loss Miami team (still to be seen).

First 2 out with no chance

Above I have the teams that still have a possible chance. You can say Auburn does and Georgia does but I’m just assuming they lose to Bama because it’s Bama. I really only see a path for those 6 teams so here are the top 2 teams that don’t have a path to the playoff.

  1. Penn State

This Nittany Lion team is absolutely legit. They lost 2 games on the road to ranked teams by a combined 4 points. Just tough luck for James Franklin. They have the best running back that I’ve seen since Reggie Bush in Saquan Barkley and a very capable quarterback in Trace McSorley. They will not be playing in the Big 10 championship game like last year and will probably finish at 10-2. A 2 loss team that doesn’t win their conference title just doesn’t have a path and that’s the tough part about a 4 team playoff because this team is legit.

2. USC

The Trojans are in a very similar position to Penn State except they’ll have a chance to play in their conference title game. They have a top 5 NFL pick also in Sam Darnold and are an exciting team to watch. USC obviously wont get into the playoff but I’d love to see a USC and Penn State bowl game rematch, wouldn’t you?