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Breaking down College Football Playoffs’ potential top 10

It’s beginning to look a lot like college football playoff season. 

The committee released its first Top 25 rankings for the postseason, and there will be four other reveals before the list is finalized. 

The other release days are as follows, with the final selection day being the weekend all Power 5 conference championship games are played.

  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 1
  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 8
  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15
  • 12 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20 (Selection Day)

The 2020 football season has been tops turvy at best, featuring a stop-and-go rhythm because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Programs went through extensive testing, social distancing protocols and mask mandates to have the chance to play on Saturdays. 

However, all of the precautions weren’t always enough. Some had to pause for multiple weeks, leading to a slew of cancellations and throwing off conference schedules. 

In Week 11, 57 out of 370

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BYU’s No. 14 Ranking Causes Upheaval Among College Football Gurus, And For Good Reason



a blurry image of a person playing football: Dax Milne #5 of the BYU Cougars catches a pass and scores a touchdown in the first half against the Houston Cougars at TDECU Stadium on October 16, 2020 in Houston, Texas.


© Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images
Dax Milne #5 of the BYU Cougars catches a pass and scores a touchdown in the first half against the Houston Cougars at TDECU Stadium on October 16, 2020 in Houston, Texas.

Brigham Young University decided a few years ago to go independent as a college football team, meaning they could play anyone, anywhere at anytime. It meant tough road games against great programs or home games against lesser-known up-and-comers.

The COVID-19 pandemic changed a lot of things about college football. Some colleges decided to postpone their seasons until further notice, and independents like BYU, Notre Dame, Army, Navy, Liberty and others scrambled to find teams to play.

Notre Dame found a temporary home in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) for a single season, and they have a full schedule of Power 5 teams. BYU, on the other hand, stayed independent, and had to

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Football feast missing some dishes

The Thanksgiving weekend football feast will be missing a few of the dishes that have become mainstays.

Schedules altered and seasons delayed by the pandemic have taken off the table a bunch of rivalry games that have become a staple of the last weekend in November, including Michigan-Ohio State and all those in-state matchups of ACC and SEC schools such as Clemson-South Carolina.

The Apple Cup between Washington and Washington State, canceled. Same with Minnesota and Wisconsin’s long-running rivalry for Paul Bunyan’s Axe; it’s the first time since 1906 the Gophers and Badgers won’t play.

The three-day college football weekend is still quite a spread with the Iron Bowl between No. 22 Auburn and No. 1 Alabama as the main event Saturday and two games matching ranked teams Friday with playoff and conference title ramifications.

No. 2 Notre Dame (CFP No. 2) plays at No. 25 North Carolina in a

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New England Patriots waste Damiere Byrd’s career game in loss to Texans

If the Patriots had finished their fourth-quarter drive and completed the comeback for a badly needed victory, Damiere Byrd would have spent Thanksgiving week as the toast of a suddenly surging Patriots team.

Instead, the 27-year-old receiver’s career day will likely be a forgotten footnote in a backbreaking 27-20 loss. With Julian Edelman still out and N’Keal Harry continuing his slow fade into oblivion, the Texans focused their defense on stopping Jakobi Meyers, who they held to three catches for 38 yards.

That left Byrd in position to see more balls thrown his way and he took advantage. Byrd, who played with Cam Newton in Carolina, rekindled some old chemistry. He had six catches for 132 yards and a 42-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter.

“I always think every game is a day for me. Whatever happens, you never know what game you’ll get called up to be that

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‘Locked down and locked in’: the pandemic plight of UK university students

In the two months since she arrived at the University of Manchester, Hannah Virgo has been nowhere near a lecture theatre, sports hall or student bar. But she has occupied an empty tower block.

Nearly two weeks ago, the 18-year-old and nine other students sneaked into Owens Park Tower, at the centre of Manchester’s Fallowfield campus, and barricaded themselves inside to protest against the university’s handling of education in the pandemic.

Despite the coronavirus crisis, students were encouraged to start their courses at UK universities on the promise of an undergraduate experience, but many say they have been abandoned with little in the way of financial or mental health support, locked down with strangers as Covid-19 tore through university accommodation, and forced to pay annual tuition fees of £9,250 for lessons over Zoom.

“They moved us here under false pretences,” Ms Virgo says. “Basically, they lied to us so we’d

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Student loan bailout would only pump more money into the higher education scam

In the early months of 2009, as the U.S. economy was reeling from the bursting of the housing bubble and the resulting collapse of financial markets, student loan balances had surpassed $700 billion.

One of the lessons of the financial crisis was that individuals, financial companies, and the government should be more careful about accumulating debt. Unfortunately, when it comes to student loans, the government has decided to subsidize profligacy, and the conventional wisdom says we should all encourage it.

As we write, overall student loan debt has exploded to $1.7 trillion. And now, Democrats, led by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, are pushing President-elect Joe Biden to forgive much of this debt by executive order. But doing so will just mean that taxpayers will have to absorb the tab for reckless decision-making.

There’s no doubt that student loan payments are a burden on the younger

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College Football Playoff rankings beg for Cincinnati, BYU matchup

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SportsPulse: Dan Wolken details what the College Football Playoff committee got right and wrong in the first ranking of the season.

USA TODAY

There’s not too much information a person can or should even attempt to glean from the first College Football Playoff rankings of any season, and this one in particular given the unusual scheduling circumstances teams are navigating. 

But there’s one conclusion that can easily be drawn from Tuesday’s rankings: Cincinnati and BYU need to find a way to play. 

While the selection committee showed a lot of respect for the Bearcats by slotting them No. 7 — the highest ever for an American Athletic Conference team in the first ranking — BYU being placed at No. 14 indicates the committee just doesn’t think much of the schedule the Cougars have played. 

Cincinnati clearly has an outside shot at the Playoff. BYU has a chance to finish

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College Football Playoff rankings: Alabama takes top spot in first rankings

The 2020 college football season was filled with ups and downs, twists and turns, as programs figured out how to operate safely (and sometimes not so safely) during the coronavirus pandemic. 

While the season has been stop-and-go for many teams this fall, the end of an upended season is near. The time has finally come for college football playoffs. 

The College Football Playoff rankings will be released across five different days, starting with the first reveal on Tuesday, Nov. 24. 

The other ranking release days are as follows, with the final selection day being the weekend all Power 5 conference championship games are played.

  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 1
  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 8
  • 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15
  • 12 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20 (Selection Day)

The top four teams will compete in the New Years Day semifinals in the Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl. As for the national championship

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College Football Playoff Notebook: Alabama No. 1, but We’re Just Getting Started | Bleacher Report

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones (10) during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

Vasha Hunt/Associated Press

No matter the season or its circumstances, the first College Football Playoff ranking is exciting. That initial Top 25 means the much-anticipated four-team tournament is coming soon.

But every year, we implore you to be patient. The ranking is simply the start of a six-week process that includes a whole bunch of changes. The first poll has neverI repeat, neverincluded each eventual CFP qualifier in the Top Four.

As the rankings currently show Alabama, Notre Dame, Clemson and Ohio State in the Top Four, remember the wise words of Anna Nalick: Breathe. Just breathe.

Right now, four Saturdays remain on the schedule. The order is guaranteed to change in the coming weeks.

Still, there is plenty to consider in this Top 25.

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Tel Aviv University researchers go underwater to study how sponge species vanished

Researchers from Tel Aviv University (TAU) embarked on an underwater journey to solve a mystery: Why did sponges of the Agelas oroides species, which used to be common in the shallow waters along the Mediterranean coast of Israel, disappear? Today, the species can be found in Israel mainly in deep habitats that exist at a depth of 100 meters (330 feet).

The researchers believe that the main reason for the disappearance of the sponges was the rise in seawater temperatures during the summer months, which in the past 60 years have risen by about 3°C (37°F).

The study was led by Professor Micha Ilan and PhD student Tal Idan of TAU’s School of Zoology at the George S. Wise Faculty of Life Sciences and Steinhardt Museum of Natural History. The article was published in the journal Frontiers in Marine Science in November 2020.

“Sponges are marine animals of great importance

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