by Aviv Klayman ’23
The 2022-23 college football season has been a shock. Entering Week 13, with only the playoffs and bowl games left, the top 4 ranked schools are Georgia, Michigan, TCU, and Ohio State. As the 1 seed right now, Georgia has proven to everyone that they are the best with a 13-0 record and many decisive victories over other top teams such as Tennessee and Oregon. Michigan, who is currently the 2 seed, has proven to all nay-sayers that they are the best team from the Big-10 conference after crushing rival Ohio State in a must-win-game. TCU, who was upset by 11 ranked Kansas State in overtime in the Big 12 Championship, has still proven to many that they are capable of fighting tough opponents. Ohio State was fortunate enough to sit at home and watch both TCU and USC get upset. With this, they got bumped to the number 4 spot, matching them against Georgia in the Peach Bowl, which also acts as the semifinals for the National Championship.
Even though many have wished to see USC, Tennessee, or even Utah have a crack at the CFP Championship, a few upsets and poorly timed losses have stolen that dream from college football fans. But that opportunity would not have been possible without the collapses of teams such as Alabama and Clemson. Within the last 8 years, those two teams have won 5 combined championships. This year marked the first in many that neither team made the playoffs. Even as odd as it may sound, this has been good for college football as a whole. With teams that have dominated starting to lose more often, other teams are having better chances of making the playoffs. It gives fans a break from the usual Alabama and/or Clemson championship game that they are so used to watching. It also gives fans more players and teams to root for, such as TCU QB Max Duggan, or Texas back Bijan Robinson.
Even though Ohio State and Georgia, who have been formidable for the last decade, made the playoffs, this year still showed fans that excitement can come from unexpected places. There were teams like Tennessee with standout QB Hendon Hooker and star receiver Jalin Hyatt taking down Alabama, a team that has only lost 14 times total in the last decade. The Pac 12 even had a great season with Utah, USC, Oregon, Washington, Oregon State, and UCLA all being ranked in the top 25.
This season writes a new narrative for teams, and the hold that big schools have had on college football is slipping . Not only USC and TCU but other schools such as Utah and Kansas State are making the most of this opportunity.High school recruits might see that there are other great programs other than what’s in the SEC. Overall, college football is better when the best teams are worse.