April 15, 2024

There is nothing bigger than No. 2 Ohio State at No. 3 Michigan on Saturday, and the Allstate Playoff Predictor has weighed the odds of each team making the College Football Playoff depending on the outcome.

The predictor also has some surprising results in looking ahead to the Pac-12 championship game, should sixth-ranked Oregon win against Oregon State on Friday and face No. 4 Washington in the championship in Week 14.

A look at the numbers as Rivalry Week has arrived.


Ohio State-Michigan playoff leverage

Chance to reach playoff, depending on result, according to the Allstate Playoff Predictor:

Ohio State with a win: >99%
Ohio State with a loss: 59%

Michigan with a win: 96%
Michigan with a loss: 19%

There are two reasons the model is slightly higher on Ohio State: The FPI has the Buckeyes barely ahead of Michigan in terms of team rating, though it’s close enough that if Michigan won the game there’s a good chance it would move ahead of Ohio State in FPI rating. Secondly, Ohio State currently ranks second in strength of record, while Michigan is third.


Huskies are No. 4, but behind the Ducks?

Washington moved into the committee’s top four this week — the Huskies currently rank first in strength of record, it would be very hard to justify keeping them out of the top four currently — but they have only the sixth-best playoff chance (37%) and are even less likely to make the playoff than one-loss Oregon.

Why?

Well, if the Ducks make the Pac-12 championship game (there’s an 84% chance they will), then they would have a 71% chance to beat Washington in that contest. If they do finish as a one-loss conference champion, they would have an 86% chance to reach the playoff.

Ultimately for Washington, this just comes down to the FPI being skeptical of its true team strength — it considers the Huskies the 13th-best team in the nation — and a pretty heavy underdog to Oregon in a potential matchup.


All undefeated chances?

The easiest job the committee might ever have is if there are four undefeated Power 5 champions. That is in play if Washington, Florida State, Georgia and the winner of Ohio State-Michigan all win out. The chances of that scenario occurring: 8%.

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