FOX Sports college football analyst Joel Klatt believes some Pac-12 teams have a real shot at making a CFP offer this season. The conference has been closed since 2016.
That could change this year, as five Pac-12 programs made it into this week’s first ranking. Four of them finished in the top 14: Oregon with one loss (No. 8), USC (No. 9) and UCLA (No. 10), and Utah with two losses (No. 12).
“My first thought about this conference was [that] They don’t get any respect,” Klatt said recently on an episode ofThe Joel Klatt Show.” “But then I just kept looking at it, and there’s an insidious path for the Pac-12. …
“It’s going to need some help, but there’s a pretty clear path for the Pac-12 right now. They have to avoid what inevitably happens at this conference, which is them beating each other up.”
The CFP remains under a four-team model, moving to 12 teams beginning with the 2024 season. At the moment the teams are still fighting for these four coveted places.
“Oregon in 8th place – [the committee] respects her. USC at number 9 – they really respect them. I would have UCLA higher but I get it. at [No.] 12, that’s not bad. The only one I thought somehow disregarded, if you will, is Utah, especially with the LSU ranking.
“If [Oregon] If they won, can you imagine a scenario where they would go to the college football playoffs,” Klatt continued. “In that scenario, they better hope Georgia wins too, but then USC is sitting there. If they win, they could have a really strong case for going to the college football playoffs, especially if TCU were to lose… [or] if Alabama lost another game.”
The SEC leads with 10 appearances and 14 overall wins and in the CFP, followed by the ACC with eight appearances and six overall wins. The Big Ten (six appearances) and the Big 12 (four appearances) finish ahead of the Pac-12, who has only made two appearances in CFP history and has yet to win it all.
The only time a Pac-12 team made it to the championship game was in CFP’s inaugural year after the 2014 season, when the Ducks lost to the Buckeyes 42-20.
Could things be rocked this time?
“I’m not saying it’s easy, and I’m not saying they control their own destiny,” Klatt said of the Pac-12. “But … there’s a good scenario for the Pac-12 to go into these playoffs.”
Get more out of college football Follow your favorites to get information about games, news and more