Even though Northwestern didn’t make the top four on the College Football Playoff Committee’s initial rankings, analyst Kirk Herbstreit thinks they control their own destiny to get there.

When discussing the Wildcats during ESPN’s CFP Rankings reveal show, Herbstreit admitted to being shocked at Northwestern’s No. 8. However, he does believe it was earned by Pat Fitzgerald’s squad:

“The biggest shock for me besides BYU being all the way down at No. 14 is Northwestern being all the way up at No. 8,” explained Herbstreit. “Because now, every game that they have left is winnable, and they go to Indianapolis with the ability to control their own destiny to get in. They don’t need help, they don’t need Florida to beat Alabama or anything like that. They just take care of business on the field and win against Ohio State, with the way they’re playing defense, that’d be a great matchup against Justin Fields.”

All Northwestern needs to do to secure a matchup with the Buckeyes is to win one of their last three games and to have Ohio State keep winning as well.

Herbstreit continued his high praise of Northwestern:

“But that’s incredible to say that with these first rankings that Northwestern has earned this. They were 3-9 a year ago, been through a lot and control their own destiny,” said Herbstreit.

It would be perhaps the story of college football if Northwestern is able to pull that off, especially after their 3-9 season a year ago as Herbstreit mentioned.