The 2022 college football season isn’t underway just yet, but it’s never too early to start making predictions on who is going to win it all.

ESPN analyst Paul Finebaum identified who stands out in what is being called a thin pool of national championship contenders during a recent radio appearance on “McElroy and Cubelic in the Morning” on WJOX.

Finebaum named Alabama and Ohio State as the pair of programs with a real shot, not giving Georgia a real chance (via On3 Sports):

“In August, we talk to people from around the country and everyone’s got a story to tell,” Finebaum said. “Hey, if Utah goes to Florida and wins that game, then they have a clear path. But, ultimately, these schools have to get past the SEC or Ohio State in the Playoff. And, I think that’s really the problem.”

“I think you could make just as strong a case for Ohio State to win the national championship here, against Alabama.”

There’s a potential path for Georgia in Finebaum’s mind, but he just doesn’t see it as a likely happening even with the Bulldogs featuring talent on both sides of the ball and after they beat Alabama 33-18 in the national championship game last year:

“Beyond Alabama and Ohio State, who is the next tier?” Paul Finebaum wondered. “By the way, in the era of trying to get 12 into a Playoff, we’re looking for three and four right now. And, I think you do put Georgia in that conversation because you know that Georgia has a reasonable path as well. But, ultimately, I have a harder time putting Georgia in there as a legitimate champion.”

It’s easy to see Finebaum’s overall point here, but it’s also easy to get the sense that Georgia is a little bit underrated. How quarterback Stetson Bennett IV continues to develop with more reps ahead of the season and if this team can put it together the way they did in 2021.