College Football Playoff returning to the Cotton Bowl at AT&T Stadium

Ruben Hill
January 12, 2018

Alabama and Georgia won their College Football Playoff semifinals on Monday and will meet in the national championship next week in Atlanta, the home of the Southeastern Conference title game.

The Rose Bowl will present a bit of a unusual scenario this year, as it has become a playoff game and is featuring a Big 12 team, and a SEC team. Alabama is going for its fifth national title under Saban since 2009 and 11th during the major poll era, which started in 1936.

Fueled by the doubters, Alabama smashed the defending national champions from Clemson. The most equitable way to pick a champion is with an inclusive playoff of at least 16 teams. "We all have been working hard and this is what we were working toward". Now, the decision was left entirely up to a selection committee, and through four years of the process, it seems the committee has gotten it right every single time. The Crimson Tide is playing in the CFP title game for the third straight season, having split the previous two with Clemson.

College Football Playoff national championship game: No. 3 Georgia (13-1) vs. Critics of the playoff are coming out in full force because the national championship game this year will be decided by a team that won the SEC championship by beating a team that beat the team that finished second in the other division.

Soon enough, Dan Wetzel may publish a book titled "Death to the College Football Playoff".

"That's a fair question", Hancock said.

From the very dawn of the College Football Playoff era, we knew this was not a ideal system. So we have to deal with the consequences if we get a matchup we don't like.

Series: Alabama leads 38-25-4. Even in the only loss, MI was up 19-3 at one point. Alabama allows 2.7 yards per carry and the 302-pound Payne's play is pivotal, consuming blockers and allowing linebackers such as Rashaan Evans to track down ball carriers. It didn't, other than to serve as a convienent bullet point for those who believed Alabama should not be in the playoff.

The Big Ten really was that loaded...

ESPN executive vice president for programming and scheduling Burke Magnus said simply having the semifinals back on January 1 had network officials optimistic about the size of the audience. The results were aided by the calendar, the changes made to the format in 2016 that moved games away from New Year's Eve and some big-brand teams in the non-semifinal matchups. Still, his shortcomings tend get more attention than his strengths.

What's next - national championship rings? Where exactly do we draw the line? Yes, these two teams are similar, and both are very good. It is also possible the best overall conference will nitpick itself apart in any given year.

Sure, the Tigers probably weren't as motivated as Scott Frost's team, and if UCF had to play an ACC/Big Ten/SEC regular season schedule, it probably wouldn't have gone undefeated.

Barrett Sallee, college football writer: It comes down to one simple thing: Georgia is a more complete football team than Alabama. The first would be the current 12-year contract expires and is up for renewal.

Oklahoma's defense isn't even comparable to Georgia's.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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