On Saturday, the No. 8 Alabama Crimson Tide will take on the No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs for the SEC Championship in Atlanta at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
In most years, the winner of this game would be guaranteed a spot in the College Football Playoffs. This season, an Alabama win could eliminate the entire SEC from the playoffs.
The Bulldogs are coming into the game off back-to-back national championships, carrying a 29-game win streak as they look to win a third straight. Standing in their way is an Alabama team that has had its ups and downs but has continued to improve every game since a Week 2 loss to No. 7 Texas.
The College Football Playoff Committee will have to decide between what looks like eight teams that are fighting over four playoff spots on Sunday
Sitting at No. 8 in the rankings, Alabama is at risk of missing the playoffs even with a win over No. 1 Georgia.
During his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show,” head coach Nick Saban said he doesn’t pay attention to the rankings. Instead, he stays focused on the things that he can control, like preparing and executing the game plan.
"Well, I think, first of all, I haven't paid a lot of attention to it, because we don't really control that," Saban told host Pat McAfee. "We have no control over that. We have control over how we play, how we execute, how we prepare our team and that's where our focus is. I think there should be some representation from the SEC regardless of who wins the game.”
"I absolutely think there should be some representation from the SEC in the CFP regardless of who wins this game..— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) November 30, 2023
I don't pay a lot of attention to it because we can't control it & I don't want our players to pay attention to it either" ~ Coach Saban #PMSLive pic.twitter.com/gnhw1mnmHL
There is a serious chance that if Alabama were to upset Georgia on Saturday, both Alabama and Georgia could be left out of the College Football Playoffs. This would mark the first time in history that the SEC would not have representation in the playoffs. Saban believes that the SEC is such a good league that even a one-loss team the SEC should have representation.
"I think this is one of the best leagues in the country, and if you're a one-loss team and you played through this league, I think you're one of the best four teams in the country," Saban explained. "So, some kind of way, there should be representation, some kind of way, because of the league itself and the competition in the league."
He continued, "But I don't pay a lot of attention to it because we can't control it and I don't really want our players to pay attention to it either. I want them to focus on what they have to do to play well and have a chance to be successful in this game and to have a chance to win the SEC Championship. That's the opportunity they created for themselves."
No. 8 Alabama and No. 1 Georgia will battle it out for the SEC Championship as well as a possible College Football Playoff berth Saturday at 3:00 p.m. CT in Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The game will air on CBS.
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