Ever been dumb and smart at the same time?
When Grace McDermott and I discussed what the College Football Playoff rankings ought to look like this past week, she raised the possibility of Oklahoma or Oklahoma State rising into the top four, and here’s what I had to say:
“I have a hard time envisioning Oklahoma State beating [Oklahoma] twice, but also have a hard time with the idea of Oklahoma sweeping Bedlam and a Big 12 title game. Or maybe Baylor will be in that? I’ll be honest, I’ve slept on the conference … because it just doesn’t seem to matter that much.”
Well, Oklahoma State doesn’t have to beat the Sooners twice, because they did it on Saturday night and now do get Baylor in the conference title game. And now here are the Cowboys, 11-1 (the loss was by a field goal at Iowa State), with their first win in Bedlam since 2014, and a chance to sweep what’s currently an eighth-ranked Baylor team, having beaten the Bears in Stillwater in October.
So, I feel pretty dumb, because there’s no way to say that the Cowboys don’t have a playoff resume if they beat Baylor on Saturday… but, it also doesn’t seem to matter that much.
Georgia, Alabama, Cincinnati, Michigan, and Notre Dame all are still ahead of Oklahoma State and won this week. The Cowboys need to pass two of those teams to get a spot in the playoff, and, well…
It won’t be Georgia. Even if the Bulldogs lose to Alabama, they’ll be a one-loss team that dominated its wins, and whose only loss was to Alabama. They’re in. Congrats to them.
It won’t be Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish allowed a total of 23 points in their four November games, and yes those games were against Navy, Virginia, Georgia Tech, and Stanford, but still, their only loss is to Cincinnati, and also they’re Notre Dame and will get the benefit of the doubt from the committee over Oklahoma State and the Stillwater TV market every single time.
So, in addition to beating Baylor for a second time this year, Oklahoma State needs two of Alabama, Cincinnati, and Michigan to lose.
An Alabama loss is (this is weird to say, but true) likely enough, but Cincinnati has resumed kicking people’s asses after a midseason lull, and Michigan… okay, the funniest possible outcome is for the Wolverines to finally, finally beat Ohio State and then cough up their playoff spot to Oklahoma State by losing to Iowa.
It would also make me look even dumber, which also would be funny.