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#pounditSunday, March 3, 2024

Florida State athletic director unloads on CFP Selection Committee

Michael Alford at a press conference

Florida State University Athletic Director Michael Alford speaks in favor of the proposed funding for Doak Campbell Stadium during a Blueprint meeting at City Hall on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. Photo credit: Alicia Devine/Tallahassee Democrat / USA TODAY NETWORK

Florida State on Sunday became the most controversial snub in College Football Playoff history, and athletic director Michael Alford is disgusted with the decision to leave his team out of the tournament.

Despite going undefeated and winning the ACC, Florida State finished fifth in the final College Football Playoff Rankings. The committee instead chose Michigan, Washington, Texas and Alabama as the four best teams in the nation. Both Texas and Alabama have one loss on the season.

Not long after the CFP field was announced, Alford issued a scathing statement in which he called it “unforgivable” that Florida State was excluded.

“The consequences of giving in to a narrative of the moment are destructive, far reaching, and permanent,” Alford wrote. “Not just for Florida State, but college football as a whole.

“The argument of whether a team is the ‘most deserving OR best’ is a false equivalence. It renders the season up to yesterday irrelevant and significantly damages the legitimacy of the College Football Playoff. The 2023 Florida State Seminoles are the epitome of a total TEAM. To eliminate them from a chance to compete for a national championship is an unwarranted injustice that shows complete disregard and disrespect for their performance and accomplishments. It is unforgiveable (sic).

“The fact that this team has continued to close out victories in dominant fashion facing our current quarterback situation should have ENHANCED our case to get a playoff berth EARNED on the field. Instead, the committee decided to elevate themselves and ‘make history’ today by departing from what makes this sport great by excluding an undefeated Power 5 conference champion for the first time since the advent of the BCS/CFP era that began 25 years ago. This ridiculous decision is a departure from the competitive expectations that have stood the test of time in college football.”

As Alford said, Florida State is the first undefeated Power Five conference champion to ever be excluded from the College Football Playoff. It almost certainly will never happen again, either, as the CFP is expanding to 12 teams next year.

Many feel the CFP Selection Committee got it right, as Florida State has lost starting quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate Jordan Travis for the season to a leg injury. Though, the Seminoles showed in their 16-6 win over Louisville on Saturday night that they have an elite defense. It would be fair to argue that they earned the right to show they can remain competitive even with a backup quarterback.

Florida State players and coaches were crushed when the CFP field was unveiled on Sunday. You can see a video of their reactions here.

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