Paul Finebaum paints bleak outlook for Ohio State's Playoff odds if Buckeyes don't play this weekend
College football radio analyst Paul Finebaum thinks Ohio State needs to do whatever it can to find a game this weekend.
Earlier on Tuesday, Michigan was forced to cancel its annual rivalry game with Ohio State due to COVID-19. If an adjustment isn’t made, Ohio State will enter championship weekend with only five wins.
Per Big Ten rules as currently constructed, Ohio State wouldn’t be able to play in the Big Ten Championship Game due to falling short of the six-game minimum requirement.
According to Finebaum, that will put Ohio State in a tough spot with the College Football Playoff rankings committee.
“I think it would be more legitimate to at least force Ohio State to do something else to get to that [conference championship] game,” Finebaum said on SportsCenter Tuesday afternoon. “I don’t think there’s any doubt they’re the best team in the league. They’ve beaten Indiana, which looks like they’re very likely the second best team. But if they don’t do that, they leave themselves at the mercy of the committee.”
So far, the committee has been kind to the Buckeyes. Ohio State was ranked No. 4 last week prior to earning its fifth win against Michigan State. But if the committee thinks Ohio State doesn’t have a path to a conference title, that could change.
Finebaum’s proposal is to shake up the Big Ten schedule this weekend to allow Ohio State to play a different Big Ten opponent.
“If Ohio State beats … Wisconsin or Nebraska or somebody this weekend, and then plays Northwestern the following weekend, they’re going to get into the College Football Playoff at that point,” Finebaum said. “If they don’t play this weekend, they are really rolling the dice.”