These 5 teams will make the College Football Playoff soon

James Franklin, Penn State Nittany Lions. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
James Franklin, Penn State Nittany Lions. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
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Clay Helton, USC Trojans
Clay Helton, USC Trojans. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /

Which five teams are poised to make the College Football Playoff very soon?

At some point, any of these excellent football programs could make the College Football Playoff.

We may only be entering the seventh year of this four-team tournament’s existence, but every year since inception there has been at least one team to make it into the field for the first time. 2019 saw the LSU Tigers win the SEC for the first time since 2011 and win their first national title since 2007. Though it may not happen this year, these are teams who will punch their ticket soon.

To date, only 11 of the 65 Power 5 teams have achieved a national semifinal date. Only four programs have made it into the playoff more than once and only six have played in a national title game. The only two programs to play for a national title and not win it all where the 2014 Oregon Ducks and the 2017 Georgia Bulldogs. Maybe they buck the trend and win a title here soon?

So what we’re going to do today is look at five different programs who have never made it to the playoff before, but could do so in the next handful of years. Perhaps one of them earns their way in this year or maybe it’s coming a year or so down the road? Either way, it would be shocking to see a good number of these five programs not earn their way in by the middle of the 2020s.

Every Power 5 program has a pathway to get to the College Football Playoff, but how many will actually realize it? All will need to be a one-loss or undefeated Power 5 champion, as which program will get into the field as an at-large team in the eyes of the Selection Committee? That’s reserved the bluest of college football blue-bloods, something these programs can’t stake claim.

Here are five teams who will make their College Football Playoff debut soon.

Pick Analysis. USC Trojans. 5. player. 808. Scouting Report. Pac-12. South

We can’t reasonably expect USC football to be down forever.

If the USC Trojans don’t reach the College Football Playoff once in the first 10 years of the postseason tournament’s existence, then that’s a complete and utter systematic failure by the University of Southern California. Believe me, the Selection Committee wants to put USC in there because the Trojans will draw a huge number. Too bad they’ve only had one great season of late.

Thus far, the Pac-12 has sent only two teams to the tournament: 2014 Oregon and the 2016 Washington Huskies. Though Oregon and the Utah Utes came close last year, the Pac-12 is only making it in a third of the time due to the overall perception of the conference being down. Truthfully, it is down because USC is down. Once the Trojans rebound, they’ll be in the playoff mix.

While Mario Cristobal has done a marvelous job of recruiting in California, when USC is humming, his Ducks may not be able to hang with the Trojans. What this really comes down to is once the Trojans get a coaching staff that can get the most out of the luscious in-state talent abound in California, USC will be able to play at near-Pete Carroll era levels. That’s what needs to happen.

Simply put, head coach Clay Helton will need to figure out it here quick or new athletic director Mike Bohn will need to move on and get someone who can make the Trojans nationally relevant again. Given their lofty status as the preeminent West Coast program from yesteryear, a one-loss campaign and a conference championship will get the Trojans into the field as soon as it happens.