On Tuesday night, the college football playoff committee released the first edition of top 25 playoff rankings. Leading the way at number one was the Mississippi State Bulldogs followed by the Florida State Seminoles, Auburn Tigers, Ole Miss Rebels, Oregon Ducks and Alabama Crimson Tide.
At the seventh spot in the poll was not the Georgia Bulldogs or Michigan State Spartans but the TCU Horned Frogs. Yes, Gary Patterson's TCU Horned Frogs are ranked seventh in the college football playoff rankings and it is well-deserved.
With the Horned Frogs being at the seventh spot in the rankings it puts them in prime position to move up towards the top four. Now you might be asking yourself, there is no chance TCU makes it up that high or that they don't deserve to be in the playoff. Well let me tell you that this TCU team is dangerous and their resume thus far proves that.
The TCU Horned Frogs are currently 6-1 and 3-1 in the Big 12 conference. Their only loss of the season came against the Baylor Bears, who at that time was ranked fifth in the AP Poll and they only loss by three points 61-58.
That is the only blip on their schedule other than that they have impressive victories including two quality wins against other Big 12 opponents. On October 4, the Horned Frogs defeated Oklahoma at home 37-33. At the time, the Sooners were ranked fourth in the country. Then two weeks later, their second quality win came against the Oklahoma State Cowboys, who at the time were ranked 15th in the country.
With those quality wins and teams losing in front of them that helped the Horned Frogs move up in the polls. Then, last week's game happened and TCU put a beat down on Texas Tech 82-27. It was an offensive showcase for the Horned Frogs as junior quarterback Trevone Boykin threw for 433 passing yards and seven touchdowns.
This now leads me to this week's game against the 20th ranked West Virginia Mountaineers on the road in Morgantown and could be another quality win for the Horned Frogs. If TCU is able to beat the Mountaineers this Saturday, then on November 8 the ninth-ranked Kansas State Wildcats, and run the table against Kansas, Texas, and Iowa they should be in the playoff.
But now you are wondering if they run the table the rest of this season will it be enough with teams such as Alabama and Oregon sitting in front of them. TCU will be in the playoff but only if Alabama suffers a lost in one of the these next few games. On November 8, the Crimson Tide take on LSU who is currently 7-2, and if Bama falls to defeat that would give two losses on the season.
I could not see any way that the committee could put a two-loss team in. But let's say if Alabama gets pass LSU, the week after that they take on Mississippi State, who is currently ranked number one. If the Crimson Tide knock off the Bulldogs then Mississippi State becomes a one-loss team and we now have more confusion.
Finally, the other team in front of TCU is Oregon, who has a tough game on Saturday against Stanford. The Ducks have not had success against Stanford in recent years so they have some demons to exorcise.
If Oregon gets past Stanford, they have one more tough test against the Utah Utes, who are ranked 17th. That game against Utah is on the road. After the Utah game, Oregon finishes out the regular season with Colorado and Oregon State.
With their schedule, it is favorable that Oregon can run the table. If the Ducks can do that then they will be in the playoff but do not look over the game against Oregon State, which is the Civil War game. It's a big time rivalry that promises to be a good game.
So as we see, the TCU Horned Frogs' road to the college football playoff is not an easy one but it is manageable. For all the teams in the rankings including TCU they have to handle their business and let everything else play out around them.
Be prepared for these rankings to change week by week until the regular seasons ends.