The mighty Ohio State Buckeyes were handed an early season loss by the Oregon Ducks in Week 2. The defeat was heartbreaking and had many thinking that Ohio State’s playoff chances were over. However, there is still a small window for a shot at the playoffs.
But it is going to take a whole lot of determination and a little bit of luck.
So You’re Saying There’s a Chance?
First and foremost, the Buckeyes need to win out. The odds of a 2 loss team making the playoffs is slim to none. And winning out is going to present its own set of challenges. Ohio State is scheduled for later season matchups against rival Michigan and the currently undefeated Penn State.
Quarterback C.J. Stroud has played well as of late and finds himself squarely in the mix for the Heisman race. The defense has played well over the past two weeks giving up a combined total of just 20 points. The team has truly bounced back nicely from that Week 2 loss and are beginning to click on all cylinders.
The main issue is that the Buckeyes are not in complete control of their destiny.
Need Some Help
It goes without saying that Ohio State will need some teams in front of them to perform poorly in the upcoming weeks. The Buckeyes are currently ranked number 7 in the country. If they are able to defeat impressive teams such as Michigan and Penn State that would go a long way in giving them a competitive chance.
The Buckeyes also need to hope that Oregon plays well this season.
This would make their loss to the Ducks look respectable and give their overall rankings a boost. If the Ducks were to falter that would add an even more negative emphasis to that Week 2 heartbreaking defeat.
One other factor to note is that Ohio State needs impressive victories. If they end up tied at one loss apiece with a couple of other teams at season’s end, their quality of winning is going to be looked at in determining the final rankings. If they were barely able to squeak out victories and the teams they are tied with dominated in their wins, that is not going to bode well for the Buckeyes.
The only real locks to make the playoff are Alabama and Georgia. Barring unforeseen circumstances, those two teams should lead the rankings as the number 1 and 2 powerhouses for the remainder of the season. But the 3 and 4 spots are still up for grabs.
With Iowa and Penn State scheduled to play on Saturday, one of them is going to add a loss to their record. And there are not really any other overpowering teams in the standings that are all that threatening to Ohio State.
The Buckeyes have to focus on winning and hope for losses from the teams in front of them. Their odds of ending up as a Final four team are not great, but there is a chance.