To the surprise of some, 9-0 Oklahoma opened at #8 in the 2021’s initial College Football Playoff Rankings released yesterday.
General consensus is that OU has not been putting away the teams they should be, such as holding on to a 5 point win against 1-7 Tulane, or a come from behind win at 1-7 Kansas.
Additionally, OU’s massive come from behind win over Texas in the Red River Rivalry has been the Sooners only ranked matchup. The Longhorns were 21st at the time and looking to contend in the Big 12, but have since dropped two more games to fall to 4-4 and a hopeful Guaranteed Rate Bowl invite.
The good news is that OU has the opportunity to impress in their final three games of the season, where they take on the Big 12’s best of the rest: #12 Baylor, ISU, and #11 OSU. Baylor and OSU games have the chance to be top-10 matchups, which the Sooners currently lack this season.
Should the Sooners win out or go 2-1, they’ll likely rematch with Baylor or OSU in the Big 12 Championship game. Given the committees underwhelming response to OU’s 9-0 record to date, it is assumed the Sooners will need to win out to get in to the top 4 and a playoff bowl.
Winning out, along with two potential top 10 matchups, as well as a conference championship game rematch, will likely keep OU in line for another playoff game. Should they drop a game, they’ll need quite a bit of help from teams ranked above them, and possibly a good story line, such as avenging the loss in the Big 12 title game, such as was the case vs Texas in 2019.
The committee certainly impressed by some other 1-loss teams, but probably won’t be with the Sooners should they fall into that category. Fortunately, this Oklahoma team can take care of that by doing what we want them to do anyway: Just Win, Baby.