Oklahoma Joins Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame in College Football Playoff

Ruben Holloway
December 5, 2018

"I don't really care about anybody's opinion outside of this building, and I don't think the rest of this team does either", Irish center/captain Sam Mustipher said.

The Sooners (12-1) will face No. 1 Alabama (13-0) in the Orange Bowl on December 29 in a matchup of Heisman Trophy front-runner quarterbacks - Kyler Murray of Oklahoma and the Tide's Tua Tagovailoa, who sprained his ankle in the Southeastern Conference championship game Saturday and is expected to be laid up for two weeks. The game kicks off at 6 p.m., and is televised on ESPN.

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney raises the trophy after Clemson won the Atlantic Coast Conference championship NCAA college football game against Pittsburgh in Charlotte N.C. Saturday Dec. 1 2018

"This was the kind of debate we wanted when we created the playoff", Hancock said.

"To play one of the undefeateds in Notre Dame, one of the best programs in college football history, it's a special opportunity", Swinney said. Location, location, location. This year's championship game is at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California, on January 7. That season was later vacated because of an NCAA penalty.

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"There's no accomplishment, right?"

'At UCF, we say:"if there's a better way, we should do it". "Now we got in, let's go achieve something". This is what they wanted. They deserve to be in this playoff, and I hope that's a decision that's made (Sunday). They opened the year with a home loss to Maryland and also dropped a game to 6-6 Oklahoma State, while beating the likes of Tulsa, Kansas State, Baylor, and Kansas by a single score each. The Bulldogs proved they could hang against the best, but it was not enough to sway the committee into making an unprecedented playoff pick. Despite winning 25 consecutive games and being 12-0 this season, UCF will have to settle for another at-large bid. The Tigers beat Pittsburgh 42-10 in Saturday's ACC title game. We're going to look at the top-16 teams in the final rankings and put them in a College Football Playoff bracket and simulate how things would transpire in that scenario. But ultimately we want to get those deserving teams into the four-team event. Facing an Oklahoma defense that ranks 108th in total yards per game surrendered and 96th in scoring, the sky is the limit.

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"Big, fast, physical", Mustipher said. If the Tigers can find a way to slow down the passing game, I think they'll have a great chance to win. "And (Clemson defensive coordinator Brent) Venables has those guys with their ears pinned back at all times". The last time the Irish and the Tigers met was in 2015, when the then-undefeated Irish travelled to SC to take on Clemson.

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