Analyst Releases Updated College Football Playoff Picks

Even with the College Football Playoff pool expanding, one analyst doesn't see Michigan defending its national title.

Brad Crawford of 247Sports predicted every participant for the inaugural 12-team playoff. The analyst left out Michigan, instead picking the Wolverines to face Missouri in the Citrus Bowl.

Here's how Crawford anticipates the new CFP format beginning this postseason:

– Bye: No. 1 Ohio State, No. 2 Georgia, No. 3 Florida State, No. 4 Kansas State – No. 5 Oregon vs. No. 12 Liberty – No. 6 Texas vs. No. 11 Notre Dame – No. 7 Ole Miss vs. No. 10 Miami – No. 8 Penn State vs. No. 9 Alabama

Beyond Alabama besting Penn State, Crawford predicted each of the superior seeds to advance. He then has Ohio State winning a high-profile matchup against the Crimson Tide and Georgia prevailing in an SEC bout with Ole Miss.

Meanwhile, Crawford picked Oregon and Texas to capture the other two semifinal spots with wins over Florida State and Kansas State, respectively. That sets up two regular-season rematches featuring new conference adversaries.

Crawford predicted the Buckeyes eliminating the Ducks to secure a trip to the National Championship Game. On the other side of the bracket, Kirby Smart's Bulldogs take one step closer to their third title in four years after defeating the Longhorns.

"Would there be any shock if the two most talented rosters in the country met in late January during college football's finale?" Crawford asked of an Ohio State/Georgia final without picking a winner.

In that scenario, the Buckeyes and Bulldogs would meet for the first time since Georgia rallied for a 42-41 victory in an instant-classic CFP semifinal two years ago.

Both programs enter the 2024 campaign as preseason favorites, but there's a long way to go before the field sets in December.