When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released many were surprised to see Notre Dame ranked all the way down at no. 10 considering they are no. 6 in the AP poll and their only loss was a nail-biter to second-ranked Florida State on the road.
Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long is also the chairman of the playoff committee and he was a guest on “The Dan Patrick Show” when he was asked about Notre Dame’s ranking. Long explained that the loss was impressive but it was still a loss. But more importantly, Long noted that Notre Dame doesn’t have any impressive wins.
“I think if you look at Notre Dame’s resume at this point, they have a very close loss against Florida State on the road and it is a loss,” Long told Dan Patrick. “But the rest of the body of their work against the teams they have played has not impressed the committee as much as the teams that are ahead of Notre Dame.”
In fact, the committee was so unimpressed with Notre Dame’s six wins, all at home and none against teams currently in the top-25, Long suggested that the Irish would have been much lower in the rankings if not for their “good loss” to Florida State.
“Then you look at the rest of the body of [Notre Dame’s] work, I would tell you [the loss to Florida State] did help them.”
This is in part Notre Dame’s fault for not having a tougher schedule and not dominating the schedule they do have. However, some of this is just good old fashioned bad luck as teams like Michigan and Stanford, two teams Notre Dame has beaten, are having down years.
While some feel Notre Dame is ranked too low, the committee is sending a clear message that it could have been a lot worse.
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