Today is Monday, August 21, 2017

Upsets have become common

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Joe Biddle

Every week that passes, I grow more anxious to see the finished product that will be the inaugural College Football Playoff field of four teams.

A committee has been appointed to select what it deems the four best college football teams.

Are you kidding me? No college football coach of one of the teams currently in the conversation will be able to survive without incurring some mental scars.

Upsets have become common.

You can't tell me you watched LSU take Alabama to overtime, losing by a field goal and proclaim Alabama is that much better than LSU in the rankings. But they will be, when this week's list is revealed.

Since I am writing this before the rankings were released Tuesday night, I will bet the ranch, Alabama will be in the top four, perhaps as high as No. 3. (I confess I do not own a ranch).

When coaches say, "On any given day,'' it is not just coach-speak. There is a fine line between winning and losing among the elite college teams.

TV makes fools out of all of us. You see it at every college football game. You have ESPN GameDay where what are believed to be normal, college educated people getting up at the crack of dawn just to grab a front row spot to wave clever printed signs.

They scream their lungs out to the point of exhaustion. The school's cheerleaders smile like movie stars and wave their pom-poms. Odds are the football players are attending last minute meetings. They stay in hotels the night before a game and are protected from the mass of humanity.

Does the committee take all of this into their equation? Doubtful, because they are attempting to see as many as a dozen or so games in a 24-hour period and decipher where to rank teams after all the games have been played.

The question I get most frequently is how many SEC teams I think the conference will get in the final four. It is possible they will get two teams in, although there are significant head-to-head games that will determine that.

Who would have predicted that something called the Egg Bowl, or the Iron Bowl will play a vital part in the process? But when Ole Miss plays Mississippi State or Alabama plays Auburn, it's on. Many fans would donate a kidney to see their team make the playoffs. The SEC and most of the Fab Five conferences have their own championship games. Every conference should have one. Those that don't, have a huge advantage. Make it a level playing field.

This weekend will produce more upsets. Mississippi State (9-0) with a trip to Alabama (8-1) Saturday. Auburn (8-1) goes to Georgia (7-2). I like Mississippi State and/or Alabama to make it out of that meat-grinder.

Around the country, I would take undefeated FSU and one-loss Oregon. I'm not sure the Big Ten gets a team, but Ohio State is playing it best at this point. The committee likes TCU, but its only loss was to Baylor, who lost to West Virginia. Don't sleep on 8-1 Arizona State.

I know, I'm dodging the issue. It's not easy. Four of the top 10 teams went down to defeat this weekend. There will be more collegiate carnage.

So here, in no particular order are the four teams I would pick today: Florida State, Oregon, TCU and winner of Alabama-Mississippi State game.

Contact Wilson Post Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at joebiddle11@gmail.com.

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