Bowl projections: Ohio State retains spot in College Football Playoff field after loss
Sometimes a loss changes everything. Sometimes it changes very little.
The latter is the case for Ohio State.
Yes, the Buckeyes were shocked at Purdue, but their outlook still remains the same: Take care of business in three manageable contests to set up a winner-take-all showdown with Michigan in the Big Ten East.
The matchup with the Wolverines takes place in Columbus, and Ohio State still rates as the favorite. Michigan last won in Columbus in 2000. A victory against their rival sets the Buckeyes up to reach the College Football Playoff by winning the ensuing conference championship game. In last year's playoff, all four teams had one loss.
For sure, there are improvements Urban Meyer has to make. Remember, though, after the shocking defeat to Iowa last year they won their last five. Sometimes, a wake-up call is needed.
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In the rest of the New Year's Six Bowls, Oklahoma slides into the Big 12's champion spot in the Sugar Bowl, moving Texas to the Fiesta. And speaking of the Fiesta, Kentucky is elevated ahead of Florida into that game. The Wildcats don't do things easily; nevertheless, they're on the verge of a 10-2 season that should be enough to earn their place.
A reminder: Some conferences may not fulfill their bowl allotment. Asterisks denote a replacement pick.