SportsPulse: USA TODAY Sports’ college football reporter Paul Myerberg breaks down the hottest headlines from Week 9.
USA TODAY Sports
A weekend of surprises and dramatic wins among the contenders have changed the outlook for this year’s College Football Playoff.
Out are Penn State and TCU after losses tough road losses. In are Clemson and Ohio State, which join Alabama and Georgia in the projected field of four.
The scenarios that could evolve in the final five weeks are endless. However, don’t expect much change if the Bulldogs and Crimson Tide win out until the SEC title game and the Tigers and Buckeyes emerge unscathed in the ACC and Big Ten, respectively.
HEISMAN WATCH: Oklahoma’s Mayfield closes gap on Penn State’s Barkley
That leaves Notre Dame, Oklahoma or another one-loss Big 12 team and Washington all needing some help in the final weeks.
For those keeping score, there are 39 bowls (78 totals spots) this season, not counting the College Football Playoff championship game. Among the 130 schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision, 39 teams have reached bowl eligibility with six wins. Fourteen teams already are mathematically eliminated with seven losses.
Reminder: Some conferences may not fulfill their bowl allotment. Asterisks denote a replacement pick.