SportsPulse: USA TODAY Sports’ college football reporter Paul Myerberg breaks down the hottest headlines from week 10. USA TODAY Sports
We’ve still got several weeks before the four teams in the College Football Playoff will be announced, but the hand-wringing already has begun.
Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez, who was on the football selection committee for three years, said that he doesn’t believe the committee would leave out an undefeated team from a Power Five conference.
The former Badgers coach is concerned that his school was ninth in the first ranking, putting them behind six teams that have a loss.
Wisconsin (9-0) hasn’t played a strong schedule, with Utah State, Florida Atlantic and BYU on its non-conference schedule and Michigan the only team in the East the Badgers are playing that is very good this season.
The rest of the Badgers’ schedule: Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota and then, ostensibly, the Big Ten title game, probably against Ohio State.
“I think that would be very difficult to do,” Alvarez told ESPN. “There’s no part of me that says if you go undefeated as a Power Five and win your conference championship, and you’re not going to be in the final four? I don’t see that. That would shock me.
“If you look back at last year, that Washington team’s schedule was not that strong. That was discussed, but they were one of the four.”
In the Big 10 East, Penn State started out hot, then lost to Ohio State, which was blasted last week by Iowa, a team that has three conference losses. Michigan lost to Penn State and will play the Buckeyes at the end of the regular season.
With those three teams beating up on each other it could hurt the Badgers strength of schedule even more if they were be undefeated, win the Big 10 West and meet one of them in the Big 10 title game.