Ohio State snatched victory from the jaws of defeat last weekend against Maryland. Although the Buckeyes are still in the hunt for the College Football Playoff, they'll need help along the way.
For starters, Ohio State needs to handle its business on Saturday, when the Buckeyes host Michigan. If they can defeat the red-hot Wolverines, the Buckeyes would certainly jump in the rankings.
Next up on the list, the Buckeyes would have to win the Big Ten Championship against Northwestern. The Wildcats have several signature victories this season, but they barely beat Rutgers back in October.
Winning both contests in convincing fashion would almost certainly change the committee's perception of the Buckeyes.
But not only does Ohio State need to win out, it'll also need help from other top programs.
Alabama defeating Georgia in the SEC Championship would take the Bulldogs out of the running. Another crucial scenario is having Oklahoma lose to either West Virginia this week or Texas (presumably) next week.
With the Sooners and Bulldogs out of the picture, the Buckeyes would definitely have an easier road to the fourth spot.
Despite all these scenarios, Ohio State would still need to prove it should be ranked above an undefeated UCF team and an impressive Washington State roster. It seems unlikely that the Knights lose this season, but the Cougars could fall against Washington on Friday.
Obviously the Buckeyes will need assistance to make the College Football Playoff, yet it's not impossible. Nonetheless, it all starts with them defeating Michigan and Northwestern in the next few weeks.