Preseason polls: Alabama, Ohio State, FSU, USC fill up top 4

Alabama Nick Saban
Nick Saban

Two preseason polls were released Thursday, and Alabama was at the top of both of them. This is getting to be quite redundant.

The Crimson Tide, which fell to Clemson in the national championship game earlier this year, is once again the preseason favorite in the ESPN and the Amway Coaches’ polls. Florida State, Ohio State and USC are in the Top 4 in both polls. No surprise, right?

Maybe, but there are some noticeable differences between the coaches and ESPN voters.

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2017-18 college football bowl schedule released

Bowl schedule
Time to be get your bowl on

ESPN officially announced Wednesday the 2017-18 bowl schedule, which will open with five games on Dec. 16.

And only two games will be played during the newly announced early signing period (Dec. 20-22): the St. Petersburg Bowl and the Bahamas Bowl.

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How could you get a CFP championship ticket for $50 … virtually?

VR gogglesThe single-ticket price for Monday’s college football championship between No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Clemson was around $1,600, according to most ticket brokers.

But imagine if you could have purchased a 50-yard line seat for, say, $100. Or $50. Or, perhaps, free.

Well, virtually a 50-yard line seat for free.

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CFP solution: Why not create Power Five conference semifinals?

College Football Playoff logoWhy don’t the Power Five conferences have semifinals?

Now, don’t dismiss. Just hear me out. … You’re very quick to dismiss.

I’d like to offer a proposal for the ongoing debate about who should make it into the College Football Playoff, especially the argument about why conference champions should not be omitted. To many, the solution is to expand the CFP to six or eight teams. I’m suggesting the playoff expansion start from within the schedule of Power Five conferences.

Again, just hear me out.

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Remainder of 2016-17 bowl schedule announced

The complete bowl schedule was announced today, and not every “great game” will be played in CFP — speaking about the Alamo, Belk, Texas and Citrus, in particular.

The other “New Year’s Bowls” were announced after the CFP pairings (all times Eastern):

  • Orange Bowl: Michigan vs. FSU, Dec. 30, 8 p.m. on ESPN
  • Cotton Bowl: Western Michigan vs. Wisconsin, Jan. 2, 1 p.m., Fox
  • Rose: USC vs. Penn State, Jan. 2, 5 p.m., ESPN
  • Sugar: Auburn vs. Oklahoma, Jan. 2, 8:30 p.m., ESPN

COMPLETE BOWL SCHEDULE (below)

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CFP: Bama vs. Washington; Clemson vs. Ohio State

Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Washington are the Final Four teams for this season’s College Football Playoff, the CFP selection committee announced Sunday.

No. 1 seed Alabama will take on No. 4 Washington in the Chik-Fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta while No. 2 Clemson will face No. 4 Ohio State at the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl. Both semifinals will be on Dec. 31.

The semifinal winners will meet for the national title Jan. 9 in Tampa, Florida.

Did you know that more teams will make a bowl this year than won’t? If you didn’t know that, did you know that has happened almost every year for more than a decade? In fact if you’re team hasn’t made a bowl in the past 10 years … well, let’s just say you might want to consider rooting for another team.

Yes, there are too many bowls. And yet I’ll likely watch them all. (What’s wrong with me?)

College Football Playoff schedule

Semifinals

Dec. 31

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: 3 p.m. Eastern, ESPN, Georgia Dome, Atlanta. No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 4 Washington Huskies

PlayStation Fiesta Bowl: 7 p.m. Eastern, ESPN
University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Ariz. No. 2 Clemson vs No. 3 Ohio State

Championship

Jan. 9

College Football Playoff National Championship: 8 p.m. Eastern, ESPN, Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.

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