What is Miami Hurricanes Path to CFB Playoff?

DURHAM, NC - SEPTEMBER 29: Ben Humphreys
DURHAM, NC - SEPTEMBER 29: Ben Humphreys /

After a 3-0 start, the Miami Hurricanes appear to be an early sleeper contender for the College Football Playoff. With only two games remaining against currently ranked teams, the schedule appears to be in their favor.

A lot of the hype surrounding the Miami Hurricanes this centered around a very favorable schedule. For the second consecutive season, Miami avoids ACC Atlantic Favorites Clemson and Louisville.

Virginia Tech and Notre Dame are the only teams currently ranked on Miami’s schedule. If the Hurricanes win the ACC Coastal Division that is likely to change.

Clemson is practically guaranteed to make their third straight ACC Championship game appearance. It would also be their fifth appearance in the last nine years.

The Tigers don’t play another ranked team until they play at number 24 North Carolina State November 4. Clemson already has wins over then number 12 Virginia Tech, number 13 Auburn and number 14 Louisville.

Number two Clemson has looked very impressive, especially defensively. If the Hurricanes get a chance at the Tigers and defeat them, they would likely get a playoff bid over the defending National Champions.

Oklahoma’s offense has been prolific in the Sooners first year under Lincoln Riley. They have averaged 48 points per game in victories over UTEP, Ohio State, Tulane and Baylor.

The Sooners have a tough start to November. They resume bedlam when they travel to Stillwater to face 15th ranked Oklahoma State November 4. A week later number eight TCU travels to Norman. TCU upset Oklahoma State early in the season.

Add in the Big XII Championship game this season and that could eliminate all three. The best formula at this point would be Oklahoma splits with OKSt and TCU and then loses the Bix XII title game. That would likely eliminate all three from College Football Playoff race.

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  • The rest of the pack involves the Big Ten, Georgia and the Pac 12. The Big Ten and Pac 12 are likely to knock each other off. The right combination of victories will help the Miami Hurricanes.

    Michigan, Penn State and Wisconsin are all undefeated. The Wolverines have the toughest remaining schedule of the Big Ten teams.

    They have to travel to Penn State, Ohio State and Wisconsin. If they can somehow get through that with two wins they would likely get a rematch with the Badgers in the Conference championship game.

    Penn State hosts Michigan and travels to Ohio State on October 21 and 28. They can likely afford a loss to the Wolverines. If the Nittany Lions lose to Ohio State, they would have to hope for a Buckeyes loss along the way.

    It would also likely take another Michigan loss and sweep of the rest of the schedule by the Wolverines for Miami to pass one of the Big Ten teams.

    The toughest game on Georgia’s schedule is November 11 at Auburn. They also play Florida in Jacksonville on October 28. Georgia is the prohibitive favorite to win the SEC East but would be a big underdog in the SEC Championship game if they play Alabama.

    The Pac 12 is likely to come down to the winner of the North and USC. Washington, Washington State and Utah are all undefeated. They all play each other.

    The Cougars end the season against the Utes and Huskies with a bye week in between. Washington also plays their last two games against Utah and Washington State. The Utes play the Cougars and Utes in back to back weeks before ending the season against Colorado.

    Miami likely needs another USC loss, the three undefeated teams to split and then lose to the Trojans in Pac-12 Title game.

    Next: Where Are The Miami Hurricanes in Post Week ACC Power Rankings

    The Hurricanes have eight games remaining in the regular season. If they can defeat Virginia Tech, they should be able to get to the ACC Championship game. Miami would be a huge underdog against likely ACC Atlantic winner Clemson. If the Hurricanes get there and win who knows what lies ahead in December and January.