It's only Week 9, but the worst case scenario for anyone outside of the SEC is staring fans and the College Football Playoff Committee in the face.
With a Baylor loss to West Virginia and Notre Dame falling short to Florida State, Alabama and Auburn both moved up into the top five in the AP rankings.
Four teams in the SEC, no wait! To be more specific, the SEC West, are in the top five, and the Georgia Bulldogs of the SEC East (the weaker division) are ranked ninth.
Still a lot of football left to be played, and Ole Miss or Mississippi State will have at least one loss after the Egg Bowl, but this is what people feared. A possible playoff with 3 or 4 teams from the SEC? Are other teams in the SEC West going to be left out even with one loss?
AP Top 25 POINTS
1 Mississippi State (43) 6-0 1480
2 Florida State (14) 7-0 1433
3 Ole Miss (3) 7-0 1404
4 Alabama 6-1 1235
5 Auburn 5-1 1231
6 Oregon 6-1 1142
7 Notre Dame 6-1 1133
8 Michigan State 6-1 1066
9 Georgia 6-1 1055
10 TCU 5-1 962
Here's a breakdown of the Top 10's remaining schedules:
A common trend with the SEC teams. There will be a 2-loss team (maybe two) at the end of the season. Best case scenario would be Mississippi State and Ole Miss both being undefeated in the Egg Bowl. You solve your one-loss problem with Alabama and Auburn. Chances are, it won't be that easy.
Florida State looks to have the easiest schedule to go undefeated. Louisville could put a scare into them. Boston College competed with Clemson late, so watch the Golden Eagles.
Michigan State is the Big Ten's best chance to get into the playoffs. Although, one-loss Ohio State, who has been blowing out teams since their loss at home to Virginia Tech, has a chance to take control of the conference's chance to make the playoff if they win at the Horseshoe.
Georgia looks like the team headed to Atlanta as the representative for the SEC East. They play Auburn at home, and could spoil the Tigers chance at not only a spot in the SEC title game, but a playoff spot as well.
Notre Dame controls its own destiny after falling short against Florida State. Road games against ranked Arizona State and USC provide the biggest challenge on the remaining schedule. They play a neutral site game at FedEx Field against Navy (Midshipmen are the home team) and they finish their home schedule with Northwestern and Louisville.
Oregon has a case. Their one loss (who it came against) and strength of schedule will hurt them again. Could be the fifth team left out because of it.
TCU, good luck. The Big XII's best chance to have a representative in the playoff.
The first poll from the committee comes out next week. In the end, we will have weekly debates about who should be in and who got screwed and left out in the cold.