Whats At Stake For Every College Football Playoff Contender

The college football playoff committee didn’t make much news when it released its new rankings Tuesday: The top seven teams remained the same. The biggest shift was for Mississippi, which lost badly last week and fell from No. 8 to No. 19.This was in line with what our college football forecast model expected. Because the model is based mostly on a historic analysis of the Coaches Poll, this means the committee behaved in the same boring way the coaches usually do — keeping the teams in the same order except when one drops a game and loses its place in line. So, our national championship and playoff odds look very much like they did Sunday.Here’s the more comprehensive version of that chart, which includes the entire Top 25 as they might appear when the committee releases its final standings Dec. 7.The lack of movement may also have been because last weekend was a sleepy one on the college football calendar. This upcoming weekend features much higher stakes, with the top teams facing more formidable opponents and entries into the conference title games on the line.I’m going to run through the top 11 teams in the committee’s rankings as the model sees their chances. In each case, we’ll look at how much a win or loss this weekend would affect the team’s playoff odds along with some more complex scenarios: for instance, if the team loses this week but wins its conference championship next week. Some of the more involved scenarios will expose potential blind spots in the model; we hope it’s still a helpful tool for thinking through the various possibilities.No. 1. Alabama Crimson TideOpponent: No. 15 Auburn on Saturday night. Alabama is a 70 percent favorite according to the model; win probabilities are derived from a simplified version of ESPN’s Football Power Index (FPI).Overall chance of making playoff: 75 percentChance of making playoff with a win: 87 percentChance with a win but a loss in SEC Championship: 60 percentChance with a loss against Auburn: 48 percentChance with a loss but a win in SEC Championship: 75 percentChance with a loss and Mississippi State win (Alabama misses SEC Championship): 40 percentYou might expect the No. 1 team’s path to be straightforward. But Alabama’s is one of the more complex cases. That’s because there are really five scenarios to analyze. Two are straightforward: If Alabama defeats Auburn and wins the SEC Championship game, it’s in the playoff, very likely as the No. 1 seed. And if it loses twice, it’s probably out — unless there’s a ton of chaos behind it.The other three are trickier. Alabama could win this week then lose in the SEC Championship. It could lose this week and win the championship. Or it could lose this week and fail to make the championship, which will happen if Mississippi State wins.Failing to make the championship at all is the most dangerous for Alabama; their chances of reaching the playoff would be just 40 percent in that scenario. But the ranking of the other two is debatable.It’s hard to imagine Alabama would be left out if it lost to Auburn but made the SEC title game and won it. The model puts their chances at 75 percent in this case. And that seems too conservative — the alternative would probably entail no SEC team making the playoff at all. Sure, it’s technically possible. If Oregon, Florida State, Ohio State and either Baylor or TCU all win out, the committee would have to bump a zero- or one-loss conference champion for two-loss Alabama. That would be a predicament. But anything short of that exact scenario, and SEC fans from Gainesville to College Station would put aside their differences and come at the committee with pitchforks.A more acute danger might be a win against Auburn followed by a loss to Georgia in the SEC Championship. That way, the committee might get an SEC team into the playoff by choosing Georgia. Georgia needs some help to get into this position. The Bulldogs need Missouri to lose this weekend (Missouri probably doesn’t have the resume to make the playoff even if it wins out) and probably to defeat nonconference foe Georgia Tech on Saturday (otherwise, Georgia’s case will be too weak also).A lot of these questions boil down to how much the committee will emphasize conference championships as opposed to everything else. We don’t have much data on that yet, and neither do the folks in Tuscaloosa. Until we learn more, the only totally safe course for Alabama is simply to win twice.No. 2. Oregon DucksOpponent: At Oregon State on Saturday night (Oregon is a 90 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 76 percentChance with a win: 81 percentChance with a win but a loss in Pac-12 Championship: 42 percentChance with a loss: 32 percentChance with a loss but a win in Pac-12 Championship: 49 percentWe might ask the same question for Oregon: If it must lose again, is a loss this week or in the Pac-12 Championship better? This case is simpler because Oregon is already assured of making its championship game.The model’s answer is that it’s slightly better for Oregon to lose this week — even against unranked Oregon State — and come back to win the Pac-12 title. The danger of losing the Pac-12 Championship is that Oregon’s Pac-12 opponent could possibly get in ahead of them, especially if it’s UCLA.No. 3. Florida State SeminolesOpponent: vs Florida on Saturday afternoon (Florida State is a 74 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 59 percentChance with a win: 75 percentChance with a win but a loss in ACC Championship: 18 percentChance with a loss: 15 percentChance with a loss but a win in ACC Championship: 22 percentFlorida State isn’t at risk of being overtaken by anyone in its conference. (It’s clinched a spot in the ACC Championship and its opponent in that game, No. 16 Georgia Tech, almost certainly won’t make the playoff even if it wins out.) But the committee seems to be down enough on FSU that it probably can’t afford a loss at all. Some of FSU’s problem is strength of schedule, as it has been all year. Neither Florida nor Georgia Tech is likely to impress the committee as an acceptable loss for the Seminoles, even if it wins the other game.No. 4. Mississippi State BulldogsOpponent: at No. 19 Mississippi on Saturday afternoon (Mississippi State is the underdog; it has a 41 percent chance to win)Overall chance of making playoff: 33 percentChance with a win: 74 percentChance with a win and an Alabama win (Mississippi State misses SEC Championship): 77 percentChance with a win and an Alabama loss (Mississippi State advances to SEC Championship): 65 percentChance with a loss: 4 percentMississippi State has to win this week against Mississippi. FPI has them as underdogs to do so. But the Bulldogs’ chances of making the playoff will more than double to 74 percent if they do.But now we’re going to get a little crazy. Surely, things would be even better for Mississippi State if it won while Alabama lost, which would get them into the SEC Championship game?The model says no: Instead, the Bulldogs should be rooting for Alabama!Here’s why: If Mississippi State wins this week and completes its regular season, that’s probably good enough. It’s already No. 4 and will have notched another big win, on the road, against a ranked rival. Sure, it could eventually be surpassed by a team like TCU, but it could also see a team like Florida State ahead of it lose. It’s a reasonably sound position.But now imagine that Mississippi State wins this week and makes the SEC Championship but loses that game. Instead of a one-loss non-champion, it’s a two-loss non-champion — not so attractive. Furthermore, Alabama would also be a two-loss non-champion in this scenario and one that beat Mississippi State head-to-head late in the regular season. The risk-reward ratio would be poor for the Bulldogs.No. 5. TCU Horned FrogsOpponent: at Texas on Thursday night (TCU is a 65 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 53 percentChance with a win: 79 percentChance with a win if current top four also win this weekend: 50 percentChance with a loss: 5 percentTCU was helped by the committee this week, which left it at No. 5 even though it was idle. Indeed, the committee’s affection for TCU is a bit bizarre. TCU lost to No. 7 Baylor in October and the more sophisticated computer systems like FPI also have Baylor ranked higher. There’s some thought that Baylor will suddenly jump ahead of TCU if both teams win out. But if the committee has been placing TCU ahead of Baylor for weeks now despite its head-to-head loss, why would it suddenly shift gears?In any event, the model now has TCU’s chances of making the playoff at slightly better than even — and their chances will jump to 79 percent with a win against Texas. However, some of that possibility is contingent on one of the teams ahead of them losing. If the top five teams all win out, TCU’s playoff chances will be stuck at about 50 percent.No. 6. Ohio State BuckeyesOpponent: vs. Michigan on Saturday afternoon (Ohio State is an 89 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 42 percentChance with a win: 47 percentChance with a win and a win in Big Ten Championship: 73 percentChance with a win and a loss in Big Ten Championship: 6 percentChance with a loss: 2 percentThis is one of the simpler cases. Ohio State isn’t assured much of anything, but the team has about a 3-in-4 chance of making the playoff if it wins out, mostly because there’s likely to be some attrition ahead of it.One question is whether the Buckeyes will be ranked ahead of teams like Alabama, Oregon and Florida State if any of the three do lose this week. Those could be close calls for the committee. Not that it needs extra motivation against the Wolverines, but Ohio State might be helped by turning up with a dominant performance against Michigan instead of just getting by.No. 7. Baylor BearsOpponent: at Texas Tech on Saturday afternoon (Baylor is a 94 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 29 percentChance with a win: 31 percentChance with a win and a win against Kansas State next week: 40 percentChance with a loss: 1 percentThis is a low-stakes weekend for Baylor as compared with the rest of the top teams. The Bears are huge favorites against Texas Tech, and that probable win is already priced into their playoff odds. They have a bigger game against Kansas State next week.Unlike the six teams ahead of it, however, Baylor would be under 50 percent to make the playoff even if it wins out, according to the model.No. 8. UCLA BruinsOpponent: at Stanford on Friday afternoon (UCLA is a 69 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 13 percentChance with a win: 18 percentChance with a win and a win in Pac-12 Championship: 47 percentUCLA is about even-money to make the playoff if it wins out and has almost no chance otherwise.No. 9. Georgia BulldogsOpponent: vs. No. 16 Georgia Tech on Saturday afternoon (Georgia is an 81 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 13 percentChance with a win: 16 percentChance with a loss: 1 percentChance with a win and a Missouri loss (Georgia advances to SEC Championship): 22 percentChance with a win and win in SEC Championship: 44 percentOur model thought Georgia might be at some risk of ranking worse than No. 9 in this week’s committee standings; it played a Division I-AA opponent last week, Charleston Southern, while several of the teams ranked just behind them won against (slightly) better competition.The reaffirmation from the committee helps keep Georgia dangerous. The Bulldogs have one more hurdle than UCLA — they need Missouri to lose to make their conference title game while UCLA is in with a win. But if they make the SEC championship and win it, their odds of making the playoff will be close to even.No. 10. Michigan State SpartansOpponent: at Penn State on Saturday afternoon (Michigan State is a 78 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 1 percentChance with a win: Still about 1 percentChance with a win, if at least 3 teams ranked ahead of it lose this weekend: 3 percentChance with a win, if at least 6 teams ranked ahead of it lose this weekend: 16 percentI list this case to demonstrate that when you’re on the outside looking in, you’d rather take a high-stakes path (like the one Georgia has). As I mentioned last week, Michigan State — locked out of its conference title game and with a middling opponent this week — just can’t do enough to impress the committee to jump into the top four. Even if there’s total and utter chaos ahead of Michigan State, its best-case scenario is probably finishing at No. 5 or No. 6.No. 11. Arizona WildcatsOpponent: vs. No. 13 Arizona State on Friday afternoon (Arizona is a 64 percent favorite)Overall chance of making playoff: 2 percentChance with a win: 3 percentChance with a win and a UCLA loss (Arizona advances to Pac-12 Championship): 7 percentChance with a win and a win in Pac-12 Championship: 24 percentArizona, like Georgia, at least has a specific path to follow: It’ll need to beat Arizona State, hope UCLA loses so it can make the Pac-12 title game, then beat Oregon there, then hope that one or two teams lose ahead of it. It’s not likely. But the committee might want to find a spot for the Pac-12 champion; it seems to like the conference; the committee ranks Oregon, UCLA and Arizona higher than the AP poll has them.There are a few other teams with a snowball’s-chance-in-hell. Arizona State’s case isn’t fundamentally that different than Arizona’s. Kansas State has an outside chance to finish as the Big 12 champion — again, without the benefit or risk of playing in a championship game — and could be more attractive than the likes of Michigan State if the committee is desperate. Wisconsin could also be a two-loss conference champion if it beats both Minnesota and Ohio State. The model says there’s almost no chance Missouri will get in even with an SEC title, but if the SEC goes haywire and the committee is struggling to represent it, who knows.In any event, here is the model’s probabilistic take on how the standings might look a week from now, accounting for both the uncertainty in this weekend’s games and in how the committee will react to them.CORRECTION (Nov. 30, 11:31 a.m.): A previous version of this article incorrectly claimed that the Big 12 uses head-to-head records as a tiebreaker to determine its conference champion. It does not. read more

Verizon Announces Price Increases For Wilmington Fios Customers

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Town Manager Jeff Hull recently notified residents of upcoming Fios TV consumer pricing increases, slated to happen on or after September 1, 2018.These changes include:The Fios Local TV Service package will increase from $12.99 to $25.00 per monthThe Fios Quantum Gateway Router Rate will increase from $10.00 to $12.00 per monthThe monthly rental rates for the Set Top Box (STB) will change based on the number of STBs a subscriber rents. Subscribers will only be charged for up to five STBs. The monthly rental rate for the first two STBs will be $12 each per month, and the monthly rental rate for the third, fourth and fifth STBs will be $6 each per month. There will be no monthly charge for additional STBs.Verizon will notify subscribers of these increases by “bill messages” beginning on or after July 1.New rates may not become effective on certain subscriber accounts until current discounts expire.Selectman Chair Kevin Caira was quick to point out that the Selectmen nor the Town have any say over price or offering changes.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedSELECTMEN NOTEBOOK: 6 Things That Happened At This Month’s Selectmen’s MeetingIn “Government”News & Notes From WCTV: WCTV Executive Director Shaun Neville Answers YOUR QuestionsIn “Community”SELECTMEN NEWS: 5 Things That Happened At This Week’s MeetingIn “Government”last_img read more

College girl found dead

first_imgPolice recovered the hanging body of a college girl from her residence at Shibpara village in Tarash, Sirjajganj on Tuesday, reports UNB.The deceased is Mousumi, 17, a Class-XI student of Gultabazar Shaheed M Mansur Ali College and daughter of Mozdar Hossain of the village.Mostafizur Rahman, officer-in-charge of Tarash police station, said on information from locals, they recovered the hanging body of Mousumi in the morning and sent it to Sadar Hospital morgue for autopsy.He said they were investigating whether the incident is a suicide or planned murder.last_img

ASEAN leaders agree to work to resolve Rohingya crisis

first_imgRohingya refugees make their way to a refugee camp after crossing the Bangladesh-Myanmar border in Palong Khali, near Cox`s Bazar.File photo ReutersAustralia and its ASEAN neighbours vowed to boost defence ties while stressing the importance of non-militarisation in the disputed South China Sea Sunday at a summit where the “complex” Rohingya crisis took centre stage.Leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, at the three-day meeting in Sydney, also agreed to work more closely to tackle the growing menace of violent extremism and radicalisation.But while a final communique noted a resolve to “protect the human rights of our peoples”, it failed to condemn member state Myanmar’s treatment of the Muslim-minority Rohingya.Nearly 700,000 Rohingya have fled the troubled Rakhine state for Bangladesh since authorities launched a brutal crackdown six months ago that the UN has called “ethnic cleansing”.Myanmar, whose de-facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi was in Sydney, has vehemently denied the allegations.“We discussed the situation in Rakhine state at considerable length today,” Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said at a closing press conference.“Aung San Suu Kyi addressed the matter comprehensively, at some considerable length herself,” he said.“It’s a very complex problem … Everyone seeks to end the suffering that has been occasioned by the events, the conflict.”Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, said the crisis was “a concern for all ASEAN countries, and yet ASEAN is not able to intervene to force an outcome”.Security threatTensions in the South China Sea remain a big worry for regional leaders, as Beijing continues to build artificial islands capable of hosting military installations-much to the chagrin of other claimants to the area.Vietnam remains the most vocal in the dispute with the Philippines backing off under China-friendly President Rodrigo Duterte. Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei also have claims.Canberra and ASEAN reaffirmed “the importance of maintaining and promoting peace, stability, maritime safety and security, freedom of navigation and overflight in the region”, without naming Beijing.The leaders added they wanted to see an “early conclusion of an effective code of conduct in the South China Sea”.“We will uphold our commitment to the rules-based order and international law in the region, including the South China Sea,” stressed Turnbull.With China flexing its muscle, they also committed to enhancing “the scope and sophistication of defence cooperation”, while expressing “grave concern” about escalating tensions on the Korean peninsula.Day two of the summit on Saturday was devoted to counter-terrorism, with an agreement to work together to tackle extremism amid growing concern about the use of the “dark web”, or encrypted messaging apps, by terrorists to plan attacks.Fears have been heightened by jihadists now being forced out of Syria and Iraq with the Islamic State caliphate mostly crushed, and into other countries.Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak cited the flow of the displaced Rohingya as a potential new security threat, with desperate people more susceptible to radicalisation.Human rights issues were a key focus of protests during the summit, with thousands denouncing Aung San Suu Kyi, Cambodian strongman Hun Sen and Vietnam’s Nguyen Xuan Phuc, who are accused of oppression.With the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade pact, without the United States, now signed, Turnbull urged leaders to get behind a “high quality” Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership deal.Australia, the full ASEAN bloc, as well as China and India are among countries still negotiating that deal.Singapore’s Lee said there was hope it could be finalised this year.“This is a historic opportunity to establish the world’s largest trade bloc,” he said.ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, with Australia, a dialogue partner since 1974.last_img

Heroin Overdose Victims Cell Phone Leads to Arrest Plea of Baltimore Drug

first_imgA Baltimore man pleaded guilty on Dec. 9 to the distribution of heroin after police located him through the cell phone of another man who overdosed on drugs he provided.According to U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod Rosenstein, Lamar V. Kaintuck, 28, was arrested May 16 after police traced his identity and whereabouts by use of a cell phone of one of his customers.The investigation began on Sept. 26, 2015, when Calvert County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the scene of a fatal heroin overdose. Using cell phone records, police determined that the victim had communicated with a man named “Chris” and obtained drugs from him just prior to his death. A confidential source then linked the phone for “Chris” to Kaintuck and also identified him in a photo array, Rosenstein said.Following his arrest, investigators found Kaintuck’s phone matched that of “Chris” and contained evidence of multiple other drug-related transactions.  Kaintuck admitted to having provided drugs to the Calvert County victim just before his death.Under the plea agreement, Kaintuck and prosecutors will recommend that he be sentenced to between five and 12 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release. According to Rosenstein’s office, however, the sentencing judge is not required to follow this recommendation. Kaintuck’s sentencing has been scheduled for March 21 before U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar.last_img read more

Iguanas on the loose in WestJet aircraft causing delay

first_img Share Posted by TORONTO — A WestJet flight was grounded in Toronto after customs officers determined there were iguanas loose in the aircraft.WestJet spokesperson Lauren Stewart says a passenger on a flight from Cuba to Toronto was discovered to be carrying iguanas in his checked luggage.Stewart says the passenger had hidden four iguanas in his luggage but when they were discovered by customs officers in Toronto, only two of the lizards were in the suitcase.The flight crews were notified and the plane was stopped in order to have the cargo hold fumigated to prevent the escaped lizards from chewing through wires or damaging the aircraft.Stewart says the aircraft couldn’t fly on to Vancouver due to the delay, but passengers were transferred to another plane that left 50 minutes later.Stewart says this type of incident is uncommon but reminds customers to always book their pets with the airline ahead of time and bring them in proper carrying cases to ensure they are safe and comfortable.More news:  TRAVELSAVERS welcomes Julie Virgilio to the teamThe incident comes after a pet Gecko was lost on a flight in July. Tags: LOL The Canadian Press center_img Monday, September 19, 2016 Iguanas on the loose in WestJet aircraft causing delay << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more