Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, October 28, 2014

The first College Football Playoff Poll will be released tonight. The analysis will be swift and intense. Did the committee get it right? Who is ranked too high? Who is ranked too low? On it will go until the final poll is released Dec. 7.


Who do I think will be in the playoff when it?s all said and done? As I wrote in my weekly Big Ten Bowl Projections, I have No. 1 Florida State playing No. 4 Oregon and No. 2 Alabama playing No. 3 Michigan State.

But what do I expect tonight? That's what's important right now.

I think it?s probably a lock that Mississippi State is No. 1 and Florida State is No. 2. Those two are the only undefeated Power 5 teams, after all.

The other two schools? I think they?ll come from the following pool: Ole Miss, Auburn, Alabama and Oregon. That said, I'll go with Auburn at No. 3 and Oregon No. 4.

So, the semifinals would look like this: No. 1 Mississippi State vs. No. 4 Oregon and No. 2 Florida State vs. No. 3 Auburn.

I also think Notre Dame, Michigan State, Ohio State, Georgia, Kansas State and TCU will be highly ranked.

About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitterb and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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