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Alabama's loss sets up a final College Football Playoff scramble

Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Alabama's 48-45 loss to Auburn on Saturday knocked the Crimson Tide out of the playoff race — and made life a whole lot easier for the College Football Playoff selection committee.

Why it matters: Heading into conference championship weekend, four one-loss teams from three Power Five conferences — Georgia, Utah, Oklahoma and Baylor — have at least a shot of earning the final playoff berth behind undefeated LSU, Ohio State and Clemson.

Championships:

  • Pac-12: Utah vs. Oregon
  • Big 12: Baylor vs. Oklahoma
  • SEC: Georgia vs. LSU
  • Big Ten: Ohio State vs. Wisconsin
  • ACC: Clemson vs. Virginia

Looking ahead: Ohio State and LSU are in no matter what happens this weekend, and Clemson is in as long as they beat Virginia. Assuming that happens...

  • If Georgia wins, they're in.
  • If Georgia loses and Oklahoma and Utah both win by similar margins, I'd give the slight edge to Utah (cue the hate mail from Sooners fans).
  • If Georgia loses, Baylor beats Oklahoma and Oregon beats Utah, Baylor could get in (though a two-loss Georgia team might still have a stronger case).

Elsewhere...

  • Fired: Missouri fired Barry Odom, Boston College fired Steve Addazio, USF fired Charlie Strong and Ole Miss fired Matt Luke.
  • Hired: Rutgers is bringing back former head coach Greg Schiano on an eight-year, $32 million contract.
  • Watch: Epic video of Heisman favorite Joe Burreaux.