ESPN analysts predict Playoff semifinal matchups, national championship
The College Football Playoff is now officially set with Georgia, Michigan, TCU and Ohio State set to face off in their respective matchups.
Several analysts have weighed in on where each team was seeded, Alabama not making it in and how each team could fare when the action begins. Several ESPN analysts made their predictions on announcement day of the semifinal matchups and the potential national champion.
Jesse Palmer, David Pollack and Greg McElroy all took Georgia against Ohio State, leaving Joey Galloway as the lone analyst to pick the Buckeyes over the Bulldogs. Everyone took Michigan over TCU.
And there’s a strong opinion that Georgia will win its second consecutive national title.
Here’s a look at the commentary:
Pollack: “Michigan, physicality, I think they’re going to put it on them pretty good.”
Palmer: “JJ McCarthy, I think he continues to play the way he’s played these last 2 games, making a difference running and throwing it.”
Galloway: “I like Michigan in this game. I think TCU in their second half being put away by Michigan in their run game. End up with Ohio State Michigan national championship game.”
McElroy: “Two teams that are built for the second half. I like the one that can run it. Give me Michigan taking care of business and kind of control the line of scrimmage in the game.”
Fallica: “I do think it’s going to be a little bit closer than a lot of people might think. I think TCU will hang around, but I do think Michigan will win. And we’ll get a rematch of that semifinal from a year ago. I do think Georgia will repeat as national champs. Nothing fancy, nothing overly dramatic, but I think Georgia’s the best team.”
Pollack: “I think Georgia’s going to win. I do think we’ll see a better version of Ohio State. I think they’ll be ready to roll, I think they’ll be healthy. But I think it’ll boil down to Georgia being at home in that environment. I’ll take the Dawgs.”
Palmer: “I’m going to go Dawgs, too. I love their defense and they’ve got a lot of NFL talent, a lot of speed. The problem for CJ Stroud and Ohio State is Jalen Carter is healthy now for Georgia now and he’s wrecking people’s games. He’s a big reason why this defense has 19 sacks in the last 6 games. They’ve gotten better disrupting the run game and getting after the quarterback. No. 88 will be the x-factor in that game.”
Galloway: “Jesse Palmer made some statements before South Carolina played Clemson. Shane Beamer got motivated, they went out, they beat Clemson. Ohio State wins this game. Afterwards, Ryan Day says, ‘Palmer, you like apples?’”
McElroy: “I’ll go with Georgia. I just I need to know that Ohio State has fixed the issues that plagued them against Michigan. I will welcome the apples, because I think Georgia wins this game convincingly because I’m not sure Ohio State can handle the adversity that Georgia’s going to put on them.”