Big Board: Week 14 

Dan Lanning Oregon head coach

Less than one week remains until the final release of the College Football Playoff rankings. 

On Tuesday, the Selection Committee released its fifth version of the rankings, with No. 3 Washington and No. 4 Florida State moving up one spot each and No. 6 Ohio State falling three places. 

PODCAST: Week 13 almost had all-out chaos

Sunday will be the day that the Playoff field will be set and unveiled, with the semifinal games taking place at the Rose Bowl in Los Angeles and Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. 

Here are several players and notes to keep a tab on in this week’s Big Board.   

Conference championship week will reveal true contenders 

Up until this point in the season, an array of teams had their hats involved in the mix to compete for berths in their respective conferences’ championship games. 

The field is set. 

On Friday, No. 5 Oregon and No. 3 Washington will face off one more time for supremacy in the Pac-12 Conference. 

Then, on Saturday, No. 18 Oklahoma State and No. 7 Texas will kick off the day in the Big 12 Championship. 

The Southeastern Conference title will be on the line between No. 1 Georgia and No. 8 Alabama. 

No. 2 Michigan will look to make it three-straight Big Ten Championship victories and play No. 16 Iowa on Saturday night. 

No. 4 Florida State is back in the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship game for the first time since 2014, and the Seminoles will compete against No. 14 Louisville. 

Teams such as Texas and Alabama are hoping for extra movement at the top of the CFP rankings to help their chances of getting in the Playoff. 

Others, such as Washington and Oregon, are playing for their Playoff lives. Winner goes on, loser goes home. 

How does Ohio State’s third-straight loss to Michigan affect the program? 

The Buckeyes have been on the losing side of “The Game” against Michigan for three years in a row. 

READ: Washington rises to No. 3, Buckeyes fall to No. 6 in 5th CFP rankings

That’s not the standard that Ohio State or head coach Ryan Day wants. Day has clearly stated the three goals he wants to achieve each season: beat Michigan, win the Big Ten Championship and win the national championship. 

Ohio State hasn’t checked any of those three boxes in several seasons. A third-straight loss to the Wolverines will serve as a greater awakening point for the program, though the first two also served as such. 

Day will have some adjustments he will need to make. He also must make sure his seat is safe as there will certainly be speculation whether he will remain Ohio State’s head coach entering the offseason. 

Whether Day is the Buckeyes’ head coach next season will be something that remains to be seen. Ohio State brought in Jim Knowles to serve as defensive coordinator after the first Michigan loss, and the Buckeyes named Brian Hartline offensive coordinator prior to this season. 

Ohio State must address the areas it needs in order to top Michigan once again, and Day will be at the forefront of discussions. 

Transfer portal season is heating up 

The first day that the transfer portal will open is Monday, and an influx of players are expected to enter this cycle as is the case every year. 

READ: Quotables: Week 13

The portal will already have entrants in the form of two Power 5 quarterbacks. 

Kansas State quarterback Will Howard announced Monday that he will enter the portal. Howard has spent the past four seasons with the Wildcats, and this year he has 2,190 passing yards and 21 touchdowns which are both career highs. 

Miami quarterback Tyler Van Dyke also announced Monday his intentions to enter the transfer portal. Van Dyke has 2,703 passing yards this season along with 19 touchdowns, which are both fifth-best in the ACC. 

The portal will open Monday and stay open until Jan. 2, 2024. It also coincides with the early signing period and National Signing Day which will take place on Dec. 20. 

Get ready for lots of roster movement.