Pac 12

Ranking the College Football National Champions since 1998

How do the best teams of the last two decades stack up against one another?
Ranking the College Football National Champions since 1998

Many consider the modern era of college football to be 1998-present — when the Bowl Championship Series went into effect.

 

Every team that wins the season’s final game is historically great in its own unique way, but trying to figure out who would win among those champs is a fun exercise.

 

Here is our best shot at ranking the national champions in the modern era of college football (1998-present):

 

Ohio State Wins National Championship After Convincing 42-20 Win Over Oregon

The Buckeyes are back on top.
Ohio State Wins National Championship After Convincing 42-20 Win Over Oregon

Ohio State used a heavy dose of running back Ezekiel Elliott and timely stops on defense to claim its first national championship since the 2002 season with a 42-20 victory over Oregon. The Buckeyes entered the college football playoff with long odds to win the title, as coach Urban Meyer’s team was on its third quarterback and suffered a puzzling, early-season loss to Virginia Tech.

How Oregon's Mark Helfrich and Marcus Mariota Break the Mold of Coach and QB

The Ducks' laid back, low key leadership a rarity
How Oregon's Mark Helfrich and Marcus Mariota Break the Mold of Coach and QB

Perhaps no team needed a coach or quarterback who can roll with the punches quite like Oregon.

 

While Ohio State has coped with injuries at the most visible position, Oregon has spent all season dealing with absences chipping away at its roster. The Ducks’ roster lost its first pieces in the preseason, and the trend continued into the week before the national championship game.

 

Video: Ohio State vs. Oregon National Championship Game Preview

Oregon and Ohio State close out college football’s first four-team FBS playoff on Monday, Jan. 12 in Arlington, Texas. Monday night’s matchup is uncharted waters for college football in the new postseason format, as the Ducks and Buckeyes have to regroup for the championship just one week after bowl victories. Oregon used five Florida State turnovers and 41 second-half points to defeat the Seminoles 59-20 in the Rose Bowl.

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CFB Conferences: 
Golden Tate, Aaron Murray join us on Talk Back to break down the game

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National Championship Game Position-by-Position Breakdown for Oregon vs. Ohio State

Which team has the edge on Monday night in Arlington?
National Championship Game Position-by-Position Breakdown for Oregon vs. Ohio State

College football’s four-team playoff concludes on Jan. 12 in Arlington, Texas when Ohio State and Oregon meet to decide the national championship. The Ducks are looking for their first title, while the Buckeyes are after their first national championship since 2002.

 

Oregon-Ohio State: National Championship Game Prop Bets and Predictions

Athlon Sports picks the title game ATS and other prop bets.
Oregon-Ohio State: National Championship Game Prop Bets and Predictions

Gambling is sports. It makes meaningless games infinitely more important to fans.

 

However, Monday night's national championship game doesn’t need any added juice to lure in viewers from other fan bases. All of college football will watch Oregon and Ohio State do battle.

 

National Championship Preview and Prediction: Oregon vs. Ohio State

The Ducks and Buckeyes will decide college football's national title.
National Championship Preview and Prediction: Oregon vs. Ohio State

Oregon and Ohio State close out college football’s first four-team FBS playoff on Monday, Jan. 12 in Arlington, Texas. Monday night’s matchup is uncharted waters for college football in the new postseason format, as the Ducks and Buckeyes have to regroup for the championship just one week after bowl victories. Oregon used five Florida State turnovers and 41 second-half points to defeat the Seminoles 59-20 in the Rose Bowl.

How Ohio State and Oregon Built Their Rosters for a National Championship

Youth movement leads Buckeyes, Ducks relying on wily veterans
How Ohio State and Oregon Built Their Rosters for a National Championship

On Monday night in Arlington, one team’s national championship window might be opening while the other one might be closing.

 

First, don’t overreact. Both Oregon and Ohio State have proven their staying power on the big stage. The Ducks and Buckeyes will make College Football Playoff appearances in the years to come.

 

For Ohio State, the return trip might be a little sooner.

 

The Nine Lives of Oregon's Offensive Line

The key matchup in the title game? Oregon's offensive line is ready
The key matchup in the title game? Oregon's offensive line is ready

LOS ANGELES — If there was a time this season to give up on Oregon playing for a national championship, odds are the Ducks’ offensive line was involved.

 

First, left tackle Tyler Johnstone, an NFL draft prospect, was lost for the season to a torn ACL before the season ever started. Oregon moved veteran Jake Fisher from right to left tackle, but optimism for that move was short-lived.

 

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