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No. 2 Cincinnati Bearcats still longshot to reach CFP

UC's Josh Whyle (81) celebrates with the team after scoring another touchdown during the second half of the UC Bearcat vs. Navy Midshipmen game at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Saturday October 23, 2021. UC won the game with a final score of 27-20.
UC’s Josh Whyle (81) celebrates with the team after scoring another touchdown during the second half of the UC Bearcat vs. Navy Midshipmen game at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Saturday October 23, 2021. UC won the game with a final score of 27-20.

The Cincinnati Bearcats are 7-0 and ranked No. 2 in the country, but are still considered longshots to reach the College Football Playoff.

The first CFP rankings will be released Tuesday, and where the Bearcats rank will be one of the biggest topics if they’re able to beat 1-6 Tulane on Saturday.

Ahead of the first CFP rankings this season, the Bearcats have +130 odds to make the CFP at SportsBetting.ag, compared to -160 odds to not make the final four. Meanwhile, one-loss Alabama has -500 odds of reaching the CFP.

Cincinnati has five regular-season games remaining. After Tulane, the Bearcats play host to 3-4 Tulsa and travel to 2-6 South Florida before a showdown with No. 19 SMU (7-0) at home on Nov. 20.

They close the regular season at 4-4 East Carolina, and have a three-game winning streak against the Pirates.

If Cincinnati remains undefeated, the American Athletic Conference title game is on Dec. 4 and the Bearcats would likely play host to either Houston or SMU.

“We’ve got to continue to do a better job of handling all the things that come along with the success or the wins and the attention that we’re getting,” Bearcats coach Luke Fickell said this week after a narrow win over Navy. “For me that message will continue to be to stay humble and stay hungry.”

The game against Navy was a reminder that opponents tend to be highly motivated when facing an opponent having the kind of season that Cincinnati is having.

“We can’t look past any opponent, because we know every opponent is going to give us their best,” Bearcats quarterback Desmond Ridder said. “We have to be focused and locked in every week and keep improving.”

CFP Odds By SportsBetting.ag

Alabama
Yes -500
No +350

Cincinnati
Yes +130
No -160

Georgia
Yes -1500
No +750

Michigan
Yes +350
No -500

Michigan State
Yes +750
No -1500

Notre Dame
Yes +900
No -2000

Ohio State
Yes -200
No +160

Oklahoma
Yes -175
No +145

Oregon
Yes +600
No -1000

Wake Forest
Yes +900
No -2000

–Field Level Media