Playoff-bound Georgia gets Rose Bowl matchup with Oklahoma

Fox analyst Joel Klatt said on Friday that Urban Meyer and Ohio State may need a convincing win against Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game to get into the College Football Playoff

Nothing could have been further from the truth, as proven the following season when Oklahoma reached the playoff.

The last time Oklahoma played in the Rose Bowl, against Washington State in the 2002 postseason, the Crimson and Cream rolled to 38-17 victory, and quarterback Nate Hybl was named the Most Outstanding Player in the game. After beating the South Carolina Gamecocks last season, South Florida will try to make it two in a row, this time facing Texas Tech out of the Big 12.

Oklahoma and Georgia, teams that rank seventh and 11 in all-time wins, have never played in football before. 3 Georgia, the SEC champion this season, in one of the two national semifinal games to be played on New Year's Day. Temple is making its third consecutive bowl appearance and will take on the FIU Golden Panthers in the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl. Following the championship games on Saturday night, the selection committee is set to decide the final top 25, New Year's Six bowl participants and playoff teams. This will be Oklahoma's second appearance in the College Football Playoff in the past three years. Ohio State managed to get in with the fourth and final seed, and the argument quickly centered on the Big 12's lack of a conference championship game potentially hurting the conference's chances of getting a team in the playoff field.


Alabama, 11-1, earned the final College Football Playoff spot despite losing to Auburn on November 25, and were unable to qualify for the SEC Championship. "It also represents a great challenge playing a team like Oklahoma who has proven to be one of the country's most accomplished programs in college football history". The Sooners' electrifying signal-caller is the odds-on favourite to win the Heisman Trophy after passing for 4,340 yards with 41 touchdowns while rushing for another 310 yards and five scores. And if they need any reminder how hard he can be to defend, just ask Auburn.

There is also one from Orange County, freshman second-string tight end Grant Calcaterra, a graduate of Santa Margarita Catholic High School in Rancho Santa Margarita. The No. 2 and No. 3 spots are a toss up in terms of order, but the teams should be Oklahoma and Georgia. When Bob Stoops abruptly retired in June, Riley was promoted from offensive coordinator to the top job.

Smart has his team two wins away from a national title in his second season. That feat has been accomplished only twice since the inception of the Associated Press poll in 1936 - by Michigan's Bennie Oosterbaan (1948) and Miami's Larry Coker (2001).

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