Alabama slips to No. 5 spot in fifth ranking of 2017

Georgia and Auburn will meet again in the SEC Championship game with College Football Playoff berth on the line

Wisconsin (12-0, 9-0) is coming off a 31-0 win over Minnesota, and is the only remaining Power Five unbeaten team.

Putting Alabama in fifth place might have been a sign that if any of the teams above it goes down this weekend, coach Nick Saban has his team right back in the College Football Playoff picture.

The national semifinals are set for January 1, at 4pm at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, and at 7:45 p.m.at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. Meanwhile, Alabama is ranked No. 5 and could stand to move up should another team in the top four fall this weekend.

Ohio State and Wisconsin met in the 2014 Big Ten Championship, a 59-0 win for the Buckeyes. With conference title hardware on its side this year, Ohio State would be able to make a strong case. The Fiesta Bowl presents interesting questions: Would Penn State and USC get matched up for the second year in a row (committee chairman Kirby Hocutt said it's possible)?

With the SEC champ and ACC champ in, let's say Oklahoma wins the Big 12 to stay in the top four and Ohio State doesn't just win the Big Ten title but throttles undefeated Wisconsin to do so.

No. 1 Clemson and No. 7 Miami will meet in the ACC title game, while No. 2 Auburn faces No. 6 Georgia in the SEC title game with winners from both expected to wind up in the top four.

Clemson (11-1) defeated SC 34-10 on the road while Oklahoma (11-1) pummeled West Virginia 59-31 at home. Auburn, even with two losses, would make it because they'd have two wins over the then-No. Does No. 10 Southern California have a chance if the Trojans blow out Stanford in the Pac-12 title game Friday night?

Oklahoma and Wisconsin control their own playoff destiny, but the same can't be said for their conference championship opponents. That's two wins better than Alabama's best win over No. 17 LSU.

Can Clemson lose to Miami and get in?

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If Oklahoma wins, it's in.

Clemson is back at the top of college football. The Tigers are viewed as a more complete team than Oklahoma, they beat Auburn and the committee has partially excused the loss to Syracuse because of the injury to QB Kelly Bryant.

One of those teams is not like the others in a potentially significant way. The Tigers might have some cushion.

The SEC Championship and the ACC Championship games essentially are play-in games.

Hate is a strong word. On Saturday, nine conference championship games will be played, including four featuring two top-11 teams with clear playoff implications.

With No. 9 Penn State and No. 11 TCU the highest-ranked teams remaining, they would head to the Cotton Bowl Classic.

"If you're Wisconsin, you've got everything you want right now".

The selection committee has cited the lack of a conference title game as a reason why a Big 12 team was left out of the College Football Playoff in the past.

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