Elation one night, heartbreak the day after. Ohio State rose from last week’s No. 8 ranking, but that was not enough.
Despite capping off an 11-2 regular season with a win against Michigan and a victory versus No. 6 Wisconsin to claim the Big Ten championship Saturday night, Ohio State did not move into the top four of the final College Football Playoff rankings and will miss this year’s playoff.
The Buckeyes finished the season ranked fifth, one spot outside of the group that will battle for the national championship.
No. 1 Clemson, No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 3 Georgia and No. 4 Alabama round out the four teams that made the playoff.
The debate for the fourth spot in the playoff came down to either Ohio State or Alabama. The Buckeyes have a decisive 31-16 loss to Oklahoma in the second week of the season and a 55-24 beatdown at the hands of Iowa, an uninspiring 7-5 team. But they also have wins against Penn State, Michigan State, the Wolverines and the Badgers.
On the other hand, the Crimson Tide has just one blemish on its resume, a 26-14 loss to Auburn in the final game of its season. Alabama does not have the same amount of quality wins as the Buckeyes, though. It defeated LSU 24-10 and took down Mississippi State 31-24 in Starkville, Mississippi.
Ohio State’s bowl game will be announced later Sunday afternoon.