Football Frenzy: College Playoff Edition

By Bobby Ziff

In 1998, the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) established the NY6 Bowl Games (New Year’s Six). These bowls include the Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Rose Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Peach Bowl, and the Sugar Bowl. The NY6 bowls are games that include highly ranked matchups at the end of each college football season. More recently, in 2014, the College Football Playoff was established. This is a four team playoff in which the top 4 ranked teams in the ‘College Football Playoff Rankings’ play in a single-elimination tournament. The one and four seed face off while the two and three seeds face off, each in one of the  NY6 bowl games. The winner of each game faces off in the CFB national championship. The College Football Playoff committee ranks the top 25 teams for many weeks leading up to the bowl games. They base their rankings on a team’s record, schedule difficulty, and the potential they seek in each team. For many college football fans, every Tuesday is an extremely important night leading up to the College Football Playoff. 

This season, the College Football Committee ranked the top 4 as follows: 1. LSU;  2. Ohio State; 3. Clemson; 4. Oklahoma. Each of the four teams are led by superstar quarterbacks in Heisman Joe Burrow, Heisman contenders Justin Fields and Jalen Hurts, as well as stud athlete Trevor Lawrence. LSU will be playing Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl, while Clemson will be playing Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. Both games will be played on December 28th. Recently, Ohio State played 8th ranked Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game. Wisconsin maintained the lead for most of the game, but superstars Justin Fields, J.K. Dobbins, and Chase Young led the Buckeyes to a victory. Sophomore Jesse Wild, a huge Wisconsin football fan, explained that “going into that weekend, [he] was just hoping that [Wisconsin] would put up a good enough fight against Ohio State, but [he] is still very excited Wisconsin is playing Oregon in the Rose Bowl.”  Being in a major bowl game at the end of each season, is a major accomplishment for each team. Jesse explained that “winning a game like the Rose Bowl builds a lot of confidence for the players coming into the next season. ” For many stars, this is the last time they will play in their college uniform, adding a lot of value to this experience. 

Although many fans of top teams are able to see their team play in a prominent NY6 bowl, others don’t. Evan Weiss, sophomore and Michigan fanatic, explained that “being left out of the NY6 bowl games isn’t the greatest feeling, but by playing a college football powerhouse like Alabama, it makes the game more interesting and exciting to watch.” Many Michigan fans are disappointed about a relatively tough season, but they are still looking forward to playing against Nick Saban and Alabama in what should be stellar matchup. 

College football is a culture that has a tremendous impact on the lives of college football fans. This has been a brutal season with many upsets and an absurd amount of superstar NFL prospects that have put on a show. Heisman Joe Burrow has had a tough few seasons, as he sat the bench at Ohio State for years; however, this has been an incredible year for this young man. Let’s see if Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers can win their first National Championship since 2007.