Florida was ranked 10th by the College Football Playoff selection committee on Tuesday night. While that might seem to put the Gators a long way from one of the coveted top four spots, the truth is, Florida still is in a great position to make the Playoff if the following four things happen:
Florida needs to win all its remaining games including the SEC championship.
The Gators’ next three opponents are Vanderbilt, South Carolina, and Florida Atlantic. Those wins should be easier to get than a Home Economics degree. After that, things get much tougher, including the regular-season finale when Florida State comes to The Swamp. And speaking of the Seminoles …
Florida State needs to beat Clemson.
I know how unappealing this is for Gators fans. To them, rooting for Florida State is like rooting for a tooth to decay. Yet the absolute best opportunity for Florida to make the College Football Playoff includes getting as many high-profile victories as possible. This means seeing the Seminoles bring a lofty ranking into the final game of the season. Likewise …
Ole Miss needs to lose.
Once again, Florida needs as many big wins as it can get. An SEC championship matchup for the Gators against Alabama or LSU makes for a more impressive victory than beating the Rebels for a second time. Plus, who wouldn’t want to see Florida versus Alabama for an eighth time in in the SEC championship? And finally …
The Big Ten needs to descend into chaos.
The single biggest threat to Florida making the Playoff, even if it wins the SEC is the fact that there are seven non-SEC teams ranked ahead of the Gators. Three of those come from the Big Ten. Obviously, the more of them that lose the better. The easiest way for this to happen is for Ohio State to beat Michigan State later this year but then lose to Michigan on the final day of the regular season. Then it would probably be best if Iowa lost in the Big Ten title game as well. This would not only be good for Florida, but better for all of college football. After all, who wants to see Iowa in the College Football Playoff anyway?
The bottom line:
Not all of this has to happen for Florida to make the Playoff. The only truly required event would be for the Gators to win the rest of their games. However, Florida is no different than the other top teams in America in that it needs a little help to get where it wants to go. If it can get some of that help, then the Gators’ Playoff dreams may actually come true.