This You Gotta See: Who’s in — and out — of Tuesday’s College Football Playoff rankings?
Georgia is a lock for the No. 1 spot. After that? Reputation has its privileges.
Look how cute the Cincinnati Bearcats are, dressed like a College Football Playoff team for Halloween.
Too bad the selection committee probably won’t play along Tuesday with the release of the first playoff poll of the season. The Bearcats are 8-0 and ranked No. 2 in the AP Top 25 after Saturday’s win at Tulane, but just watch them be left out of the top four. And then try to imagine how they’ll feel when they get to 13-0 and the same damn thing happens.
Georgia is a lock for the No. 1 slot. How good are the Bulldogs? So good, they committed three turnovers Saturday, had a devil of a time moving the ball and beat Florida 34-7 anyway.
After that? Nobody deserves a spot more than 8-0 Michigan State — which knocked off unbeaten Michigan in a 37-33 classic — but the Spartans might not be in the four, either. At least they know that if they keep winning, especially Nov. 20 at Ohio State, they’ll be comfortably in the field.
Alabama has lost a game, but I’ll be shocked if the Crimson Tide aren’t in the four. They might be up at No. 2. Reputation has its privileges. Oklahoma is a sloppy 9-0, having barely beaten Tulane, Nebraska, West Virginia, Kansas State and even Kansas, but, again, the reputation thing.
Michigan State? Ohio State? What about 7-1 Oregon, which beat the Buckeyes in Columbus?
And then there’s Cincinnati. Grab an extra mini candy bar from the bowl, Bearcats. You’ve earned at least that.
Here’s what’s happening:
49ers at Bears (noon, Fox-32)
Are the Bears even worse than we thought? That might be the only way to explain the fact they’re betting underdogs at home against an opponent that has lost four games in a row.
Buccaneers at Saints (3:25 p.m., Fox-32)
Tom Brady vs. Jameis Winston doesn’t have quite the sex appeal of Brady vs. Drew Brees, but this is still a must-see rivalry. And speaking of sexy, Bucs tight end Rob Gronkowski should play for the first time in over a month.
Astros at Braves, Game 5 (7 p.m., Fox-32)
You’ve got to hand it to the Braves, who are trying to become the first team since the 2014 Giants to win it all after winning fewer than 90 games in the regular season. No, smarty pants, last year’s 43-17 Dodgers don’t count.
Cowboys at Vikings (7:20 p.m., Ch. 5)
If Dallas QB Dak Prescott’s injured calf prevents him from playing, backup Cooper Rush will run the show for the Cowboys. With a name that awesome, you’d think more of us would’ve heard of the guy by now.
Bulls at Celtics (6:30 p.m., NBCSCH)
The season continues without injured Patrick Williams, and that’s a real bummer. Is it too much to ask Zach LaVine to at least pretend he doesn’t have a bum thumb?
Senators at Blackhawks (7 p.m., NBCSCH+)
The Hawks are winless at home and have been outscored by a count of 17-7 at the United Center. In other words, they’ve got the Sens right where they want them.
Giants at Chiefs (7:15 p.m., ESPN)
It’s crazy to think about, but Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes is under fire for his shoddy play of late. Turns out it’s not all that easy being the “next” Brady.
College Football Playoff rankings show (6 p.m., ESPN)
From here, new rankings will come out every Tuesday until the regular season is fresh out of Tuesdays.
Braves at Astros, Game 6, if necessary (7 p.m., Fox-32)
Back at Minute Maid Park, the Astros will attempt to squeeze the juice out of their title-minded foes. If you think that joke was lame, just toss it into the nearest garbage can.
Bulls at 76ers (6 p.m., NBCSCH)
Do the Bulls get the full Sixers squad, Ben Simmons and all, or is Simmons still plagued by (ahem) back problems? Either way, nobody will have to worry about closing out on his jump shots.
Northern Illinois at Kent State (6 p.m., ESPN2)
The Huskies were winless last season, yet here they are as the only unbeaten team — at 4-0 — in the Midwestern Athletic Conference. It’s called “MACtion,” baby, and it never disappoints.
Braves at Astros, Game 7, if necessary (7 p.m., Fox-32)
Do we get a vote? Dang it, it’s necessary.
Jets at Colts (7:20 p.m., Fox-32, NFL, Amazon)
A clunker of a matchup? Tell that to your fantasy team and the sawbuck you’ve got riding on the outcome.
Blackhawks at Jets (7 p.m., NBCSCH)
Who’s that Jets general manager again? Oh, yeah, Ken Cheveldayoff. He sure seems to be breathing easy these days.
Illinois at Minnesota (11 a.m., ESPN2)
Listen, they wouldn’t be the Illini if they didn’t lose at home to Rutgers a week after winning at Penn State. The Gophers have no clue which opponent is showing up.
Navy at Notre Dame (2:30 p.m., Ch. 5)
Middies coach Ken Niumatalolo is only 1-4 against the Irish, but he sure has done wonderful work on the whole. Would it kill you to memorize the spelling of the man’s name already?
Iowa at Northwestern (TBD)
Kirk Ferentz and Pat Fitzgerald have been coaching the Hawkeyes and Wildcats, respectively, for a combined 39 seasons. What, you thought it was more?