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College Football Playoff picks after Week 15

With most of the playoff contenders on either a bye or a cancellation, Week 15 provided little to no change in our writers’ College Football Playoff picks.

The news earlier in the week that Ohio State would be eligible for the Big Ten title game did little to change the minds of three of our writers. Two votes for Cincinnati and another for Texas A&M for the fourth playoff spot keep the Buckeyes from being a unanimous selection this week. It’s yet to be known if the College Football Playoff selection committee will hold the lack of games played against Ohio State.

The only team in the top four to play this week was Alabama, and Nick Saban’s squad wasted little time proving it’s the No. 1 team in the country again. The Crimson Tide rushed for six touchdowns, including two from Heisman candidate Najee Harris, in a 52-3 rout of Arkansas. The SEC championship game and the No. 6 Florida Gators now await Alabama next Saturday.

Two of the mainstays in the writers’ rankings this season, Notre Dame and Clemson, will meet next Saturday in the ACC championship game. The last time the two teams met, the Fighting Irish outlasted the Tigers, 47-40, at home in double overtime. This game will likely have the biggest impact on the final CFP rankings unless Florida upsets Alabama that night.

Also on Saturday, Ohio State will take on No. 14 Northwestern in the Big Ten title game while Cincinnati will face Tulsa in the AAC title game. Texas A&M will be at home, rooting for every result that gives it a path to the final spot in the top four.

The College Football Playoff semifinals will be played on Jan. 1 at the Rose Bowl (5 p.m., ESPN and ESPN App) and Allstate Sugar Bowl (8 p.m., ESPN and ESPN App.).


Andrea Adelson: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Kyle Bonagura: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Bill Connelly: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Ohio State, 4. Cincinnati
Heather Dinich: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
David M. Hale: 1. Notre Dame, 2. Alabama, 3. Clemson, 4. Cincinnati
Sam Khan Jr.: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Texas A&M
Chris Low: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Harry Lyles Jr.: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Adam Rittenberg: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Alex Scarborough: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Mark Schlabach: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Tom VanHaaren: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State
Dave Wilson: 1. Alabama, 2. Notre Dame, 3. Clemson, 4. Ohio State

Sourced from ESPN

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