The SEC has dominated the four team College Football Playoff. It might own the 12-team tournament as well.

College Football News’ Pete Fiutak released his early SEC football preview and predictions on Monday. Among its bold predictions is that the league will have five teams in the upcoming playoff. Here’s his reasoning.

“If there was a 12-team playoff format last year, Alabama (4), Georgia (6), Missouri (9), and Ole Miss (11) would’ve been in. Texas (3) would’ve been in, too, and Oklahoma (12) and LSU (13) would’ve barely been on the outside looking in.

Four other conference champions are automatically in, and several Big Ten teams will get in, too, but assume Georgia, LSU, and Texas will get that 10-2 mark or better, and two more out of Alabama, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, and Tennessee will find their way in.”

The analysis could be correct. We had five SEC teams in our recent College Football Playoff prediction in Georgia, Texas, Ole Miss, Alabama and Tennessee. The prediction saw LSU just missing the playoff as a sixth 10-win SEC team.

Believe it or not, even Missouri and Texas A&M have a favorable enough schedule to win 10 games and make a playoff. I have both going 9-3.

Four other automatic bids for conference champions could limit how many teams the SEC gets into the playoff. The SEC, Big Ten, ACC, Big 12 and top Group of Five Champion will take five of the 12 spots. That leaves seven at-large bids.

The Big Ten at its peak probably gets three or four teams into the playoff. Outside of the top four of Ohio State, Oregon, Michigan and Penn State, there aren’t many other contenders.

The likelihood is the SEC and Big Ten take at least all but one at-large playoff spot that the ACC, Big 12 and Notre Dame will vie to win. Even so, there’s no guarantee any team outside the Big Ten or SEC will win a second bid.

The top eight or nine teams in the SEC would probably be good enough to reach an ACC or Big 12 championship. That alone could make it difficult for either conference to earn a second bid. Texas 28-point Big 12 title victory over Oklahoma State last season doesn’t help its former conference’s perception.

Count College Football News among the outlets predicting five SEC playoff teams. Texas will look to be one of those teams in a consecutive playoff appearance.

Story originally appeared on Longhorns Wire


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