Down the stretch of the season, we all tuned in to games around the country hoping to see teams ranked ahead of the Alabama Football team lose, hoping to see Alabama move up in the rankings. Entering conference championship weekend, it seemed the only way Alabama Football could make the playoff was with a Florida State or Texas Longhorn loss. The Crimson Tide got neither but, they handled business snapping a 29-game win streak that the Georgia Bulldogs held.
The win vaulted Alabama from eighth in the College Football Playoff polls all the way to fourth in the playoff setting up a Rose Bowl against the top-ranked Michigan Wolverines. The path for the Crimson Tide was not easy, racking up wins over Ole Miss, Tennessee, LSU, and a few other tough opponents yet it didn’t give them any bump with the committee.
Alabama Football got here because Nick Saban proved he is still the standard and he’s still the best coach in the country leading Alabama to a win over Kirby Smart who’s rivaled Saban’s stretch of greatness. It did not matter that Florida State went undefeated, or that Georgia just lost its first game in nearly three years, or that Ohio State’s loss came to the top-ranked team. The committee made the correct decision by putting in a one-loss Alabama team that got better as the season progressed. Keeping Alabama out would have discouraged teams from scheduling strong out-of-conference opponents early in the season due to the risks of roster turnover and coaching changes.
Alabama Football: There was always a path.
You have to come away from the Playoff Committee’s selection tipping your hat to the playoff committee. They were given a tough choice and made the hard, but right decision using the eye test deciding that Alabama was among the top four teams in the country. As avid college football fans, we all looked at the schedules every week looking for chances for the Crimson Tide to vault up the rankings to earn its way into the playoffs. The losses for opponents never came and it seemed like there was a real chance Alabama Football would be punished for scheduling Texas.
The Committee made the right choice, beating a team in the Georgia Bulldogs who hadn’t lost since the 2021 SEC Championship by far proves you are a top-four team. The Committee will have a chance to look even better as Florida State will face Georgia in the Orange Bowl.
This will be the last year the committee is forced to make a decision this rash as the playoffs will expand to 12 teams next season. The path for Alabama was always there despite the committee keeping them ranked 8th for a majority of the season.
Rankings via ESPN