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Can Oregon still make the College Football Playoff after loss to Washington?

The Ducks came close in the desert, but fell one possession short. Is there a path for them to reach the College Football Playoff?

Oregon Ducks quarterback Bo Nix looks to throw against the Washington Huskies during the first quarter at Allegiant Stadium. Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Update December 2, 11:40 p.m. Oregon will be in a New Year’s Six Bowl, but after Saturday’s results has 0.0% chance of making the College Football Playoff.

Despite closing as 9.5-point favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook, the Oregon Ducks were unable to win the final Pac-12 trophy as the Washington Huskies escaped 34-31 on Friday night at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

And while the odds might seem as long as hitting a jackpot on just one pull of a Vegas slot machine, the Ducks aren’t eliminated from the 2023 College Football Playoff just yet. Let’s take a look at what Oregon will want to happen on Saturday if they are to have any hope of playing for the national championship.

But what if? Best path for Oregon

  • No. 1 Georgia beats No. 8 Alabama
  • No. 3 FSU loses ACC Championship to No. 14 Louisville, without now-injured starting QB Jordan Travis
  • No. 7 Texas loses Big XII Championship to No. 18 Oklahoma State
  • No. 2 Michigan Wolverines losing to Iowa Hawkeyes in the Big Ten Championship

While it might be a tough case to make, two losses to an outstanding Washington team (and none at home) would give the Ducks a strong case to be a part of the College Football Playoff. The longest shot is of course the 21.5-point favorite Michgan falling to a team that can barely score.

But if all of the first three scenarios take place, they’ll at least force the CFP Committee to give them some consideration for the national semifinals.