NORMAN — The Oklahoma Sooners are going back to the College Football Playoff, and they’re California-bound.
This year’s playoff bracket was set during this morning’s telecast on ESPN, and the Sooners came in at No. 2 in the CFP rankings, one spot behind No. 1 Clemson and just ahead of No. 3 Georgia. Alabama got the fourth spot over Ohio State despite not winning its conference championship. Ohio State finished No. 5, while Wisconsin was sixth.
OU (12-1) will play Georgia (12-1) on Jan. 1 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. The game kicks off at 4:10 p.m. CT. It’s the first-ever meeting between the two college football powerhouses.
Clemson (12-1) and Alabama (11-1) — the last two national champions — will rematch for a third straight year, this time in the Sugar Bowl, a 7:45 p.m. kickoff.
The Sooners stamped their ticket after Saturday’s 41-17 destruction of TCU in the Big 12 Championship Game in Arlington, Texas.
OU made the playoff field in 2015, but was left out in 2014 and 2016. The Sooners lost to Clemson 37-17 in the Orange Bowl in their only previous CFP trip.
Columnist John E. Hoover is co-host of “Further Review with Hoover & Rew” and can be heard every weekday on The Franchise in Tulsa from noon to 3 p.m. with co-host Lauren Rew. In Oklahoma City, catch him Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 10:25 and every Friday afternoon at 4:05. Listen at fm107.7 in OKC, fm107.9/am1270 in Tulsa, on The Franchise app, or click the “Listen” tab on The Franchise home page. Visit his personal page at johnehoover.com.