History says Oklahoma still fits mold of College Football Playoff team

Oklahoma-Oklahoma football-Oklahoma Sooners-Baker Mayfield-College
            Football Playoff

Oklahoma’s chances of making the College Football Playoff took a hit last week with the loss to Iowa State, but history says the Sooners are still very much in contention for a playoff spot.

ESPN’s Heather Dinich broke down the similarities between most of the teams to make the playoff so far, and the Sooners score well in a few key areas. First, they have a Power 5 win in non-conference play. Second, they have the same starting quarterback from last season. Finally, they have the potential for some major wins down the stretch.

Signature non-conference win

In three years of the playoff, all but one team to make the field earned a win over a Power 5 opponent in non-conference play. Oklahoma meets that criteria with its 31-16 victory at Ohio State in Week 2, still the most impressive win in all of college football this season. Baker Mayfield planted the Oklahoma flag at midfield in Columbus, and he planted the Sooners in the thick of the playoff hunt as well.

This metric gives the Sooners an advantage over the Buckeyes and other playoff contenders such as Wisconsin and Auburn. The Badgers didn’t play a Power 5 opponent in non-conference play, and Auburn and Ohio State both lost their Power 5 non-conference games.

A returning star quarterback

Nine of the 12 teams to make the playoffs so far returned the same quarterback from the previous season. Mayfield more than fulfills that standard. As a two-time Heisman finalist, he is probably the best quarterback among the playoff contenders.

AP Top 25 wins and bouncing back

Every playoff participant so far has finished the year with at least two wins over teams ranked in Associated Press Top 25. Oklahoma has one right now: Ohio State.

The Sooners will likely have at least two chances for another win over a ranked team. They play at Oklahoma State (currently ranked No. 14) on Nov. 4, and they’ll host TCU (currently No. 6) on Nov. 11. Texas Tech, West Virginia and Texas all have the chance to be ranked at the end of the season as well.

This is the most important thing for Oklahoma. Over the first three years of the playoff, nine of the 12 teams to make the field had a loss. But each of those teams bounced back with a win against a ranked opponent before bowl season. If the Sooners take care of the Cowboys and Horned Frogs, and possibly earn another ranked win the Big 12 title game, they’ll be in great shape for a playoff spot.

The post History says Oklahoma still fits mold of College Football Playoff team appeared first on Diehards.

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