Alabama Football and current CFB Playoff debates


It is no surprise much of the college football world is drooling over Alabama Football possibly missing the Playoffs. It has happened once since the Playoffs began in the 2014 season. For Crimson Tide haters the once is seven times too few.

Only two programs have played in more than four CFB Playoff semi-finals. They are Clemson with six semis and the Alabama Crimson Tide with seven. Only two programs have played in more than two National Championship games; Clemson with four appearances and Alabama with six.

Critics of the four-team Playoff format whine that two teams, having played in 12 of the 16 CFB Playoff semifinals, have been bad for college football. There would be widespread rejoicing if the Tigers and the Tide were to miss the field this season.

It could happen. The Crimson Tide must win out or make history. No two-loss team has ever competed in the Playoffs. Clemson, despite a far easier path than Alabama, is not a lock. The Tigers might make the field with a single loss.

An unanswered question is whether a one-loss, SEC Champion Crimson Tide could get bumped out because of four or more undefeated teams. Currently, there are six undefeated Playoff contenders. Regular season games; Georgia vs. Tennessee and Ohio State vs. Michigan ensure the number will drop to at most four.

One scenario would be Ohio State, Clemson and TCU winning out, with Georgia beating Tennessee and losing to Alabama in the SEC Championship game. Competing with the Crimson Tide for the fourth spot would be one-loss teams Georgia, Tennessee and Michigan.

Outside the SEC, fans of one-loss teams in other conferences would argue their teams have equal resumes. The strongest claim for an eighth team to be considered would come from a one-loss Pac12 Champion.

For the record, no Group of Five champion will make the CFB Playoffs this season.

Alabama Football Playoff Prediction

Also for the record, my firm prediction is a 12-1 Alabama Crimson Tide, with an SEC Championship, is a lock. Any debate would have to be over whether a one-loss Georgia or a one-loss Tennessee is more deserving of a Playoff slot than an undefeated TCU or Clemson. Georgia, with wins over Oregon and Tennessee, might be blessed by Selection Committee boldness.

Fans can test out various scenarios, provided by FiveThirtyEight.

dark. Next. Crimson Tide Elephant in the room

Much could happen in the coming weeks because of unexpected upsets. It is pretty clear the 2022 season is showing why at least 6-8 teams should compete in the Playoffs.