The Alabama Crimson Tide had hoped the committee would push them into the College Football Playoff after USC and TCU’s losses. But Nick Saban was left out.
Whenever the Alabama Crimson Tide suffered its second loss of the season to LSU after having gone down to Tennessee earlier in the year, it seemed as if the College Football Playoff hopes of Nick Saban’s team were circling the drain. The CFP selection committee disagreed.
Bama didn’t qualify for a conference championship so they needed a wild amount of chaos to transpire over the final two weeks of the season. And lo and behold, they got most of it. USC and TCU lost in their conference title matchups, LSU lost both of its final two games, and there was a world where the Crimson Tide could’ve slipped into the Top 4 of the final rankings.
That’s certainly what Saban was pining for as the head coach showed up on multiple networks throughout Saturday to campaign for Alabama to get in. But that wasn’t enough.
Alabama ended up being the first team out as they finished ranked No. 5, despite the head coach championing his team. So after the Top 4 was revealed without the Tide in it, it was obvious that ESPN would catch up with Saban.
Nick Saban comments on Alabama being snubbed from College Football Playoff
Speaking on his feelings about missing the Playoff, the predominant note was that Saban was just disappointed, both personally and for his team.
“We’re obviously disappointed,” Saban said. “We wanted to see our team have an opportunity to play and get into the playoffs.”
He continued, “It comes down to trying to establish the kind of respect that we’d like to have for this team, and what we did and didn’t accomplish, what we did and didn’t do.”
The first part of Saban’s comments make a ton of sense. This team surely thought they had life to make the College Football Playoff, so there’s a natural disappointment about not getting in. Where he loses me — and should lose everyone — is the second part of his response.
What is he talking about with establishing respect? The fact that a two-loss Alabama team with just two wins over teams that ranked inside the final Top 25 rankings (and neither of which was inside the Top 10) while also having losses to two non-playoff teams was still in consideration to make the CFP is about as clear as respect gets. That was because of Saban and the logo on the helmet, not the body of work.
Regardless, this team won’t be playing for a national championship and is now heading to the AllState Sugar Bowl where they will face Big 12 champion Kansas State.