Vannini: Alabama Has Already Secured Playoff Berth

A loss in the SEC Championship wouldn't prevent Alabama from making the playoff, The Athletic's Chris Vannini says

After Hours With Amy Lawrence
November 28, 2018 - 9:14 am

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The College Football Playoff committee released its penultimate rankings Tuesday, with Alabama (12-0), Clemson (12-0), Notre Dame (12-0) and Georgia (11-1) in the top four and Oklahoma (11-1) and Ohio State (11-1) at Nos. 5 and 6, respectively.

A lot can happen this weekend, but know this: Alabama, which plays Georgia in the SEC Championship, is getting in regardless.

“Alabama has played like an elite team all year long,” The Athletic college football national reporter Chris Vannini said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “They’ve beaten every team they’ve played by 20 points. They’re the first team to do that since Yale in the 1880s. To beat your first 12 opponents by 20 points hasn’t been done in 120 years. Part of that is because they didn't play a 12-game schedule for a long time, but still, Alabama hasn’t had a slip-up. They haven't had a game where they eked by.”

Alabama was dominant in its toughest games of the season, beating No. 10 LSU and No. 18 Mississippi State by a combined 53-0. They also beat Auburn 52-21 in the Iron Bowl on Saturday to avenge last season’s loss.

“Alabama has been at a consistently high level all year long,” Vannini said. “They’re absolutely one of the best teams. This isn’t like Alabama a year ago that had some warts. This team has been completely dominant from beginning to end.”

The SEC Championship kicks off Saturday at 4 p.m. ET. Georgia has won five games in a row since losing 36-16 at LSU on Oct. 13.