The list of teams still in playoff contention keeps getting smaller and smaller, but another crazy weekend could make it a lot bigger. Not included in the playoff conversation are several teams who are just outside of the committee's radar for serious contenders.
Temple, Houston and Toledo are all currently undefeated. None of those teams make this week's list of playoff projections, however, because non of them have a strong power conference win. Memphis has the win over Ole Miss, but even they remain a long shot. Perfection may not be good enough for Group of Five teams to reach the playoff.
The ACC Coastal Division is a three-horse race between Pittsburgh, North Carolina and Duke who all currently have 6-1 records. One of those teams is going to play for the conference championship. What happens if they win? These three teams are power conference teams with only one loss. Aren't they playoff contenders?
None of those three teams is going to get any real consideration until the go 11-1. Even then, they will still need to win the championship game and even then, would a one-loss Pittsburgh have a better resume than say, a one-loss Alabama? Of course not.
And let's not forget all those strong two-loss teams like Wisconsin, Northwestern, UCLA, Georgia, Ole Miss and Texas A&M. Can all of those teams be dismissed just because they have two losses?
For now, pretty much. The two-loss plateau is enough to eliminate teams from serious contention in my book. A lot would have to happen for those re-emerge into the conversation. There would have to be chaos over the next few weeks, more chaos than we are used to even from college football.
That's not to say that none of these teams can eventually crack into the playoff projections. Temple will make the list next week should they upset Notre Dame. If a Coastal team manages to go 11-1, of course the selection committee will take notice. The Pac-12 and the SEC could easily be won by a two-loss team which would completely change the landscape of the current projections.
This list is a projection, however, not a ranking. A Group of Five team is not going to make the playoff, the Coastal Champion will not be 11-1 and they certainly won't beat Clemson (will they Miami?) and the committee won't be able to overlook two losses on a team's resume.
Probably....This is college football after all. Nothing is certain.
You know which teams didn't make the cut, so who did? See here in this week's College Football Playoff projections.