Posted on November 17, 2019, by Travis Pulver
Alabama has been a part of the college football playoffs every season since it began. But after losing to LSU, they were bumped out of the top four. With a relatively weak schedule, it is going to be hard for them to make it in but not impossible.
However, with the injury to Tua Tagovailoa against Mississippi State, the task is going to be a lot harder—but not impossible.
The fateful injury happened late in the second quarter on Saturday afternoon. Tagovailoa was trying to scramble away from the pass rush and was hit as he threw the ball away. But with how he hit the ground, it was apparent something was wrong. Fans found out just how wrong after the game— he dislocated his right hip, done for the season.
In the past, the CFP committee has said that it would take injuries into consideration. So, despite the win, there is a possibility that Alabama could get leap-frogged by either Oregon or Utah. But it may be more likely that the Committee waits until the Auburn game.
Yes, Mac Jones is not Tua Tagovailoa. But the offense, not to mention the team is much more than Tua. Just because Tagovailoa isn’t there anymore, doesn’t mean the team is going to fall apart. The Crimson Tide still some of the best wide receivers in college football, a great running game, and a solid offensive line.
Their defense isn’t too shabby, either.
The Iron Bowl will likely be a much better game than it otherwise would have been, but there is no reason to think that Alabama will struggle to win that game. So, when the regular season ends, they will be 10-1.
However, with their best wins coming against a then-No. 24 Texas A&M team and whatever Auburn falls to after losing to Georgia (was No. 12), they are going to need help to crack back into the top four.
That help is not going to be easy to come by. Someone has to lose. LSU may need to lose twice. If Clemson were to drop one, they would definitely fall out of the top four. But their schedule is even softer than Alabama’s. Chances of that happening are pretty slim.
So, that means it really needs to be Georgia. With their win over Auburn, they have locked up a spot in the SEC championship game already. That is not going to change. But if they were to lose to Texas A&M next week or to LSU in the title game, they are going to fall out of the No. 4 slot.
Neither Utah or Oregon have resumes good enough to jump over Alabama. If Penn State can beat Ohio State and then win the Big Ten title, they might have the resume to leap-frog the Tide. But otherwise, there isn’t a team impressive enough to warrant inclusion over a one-loss Alabama team.
The Committee has seen fit to include Alabama before when the Tide did not play in the SEC title game. It wouldn’t be shocking if they were to do so again. That is, assuming the Bulldogs lose one of their next three games.
Their odds are going to skyrocket without Tua Tagovailoa at quarterback, but that should attract bettors, not scare them off.