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23 teams that should declare themselves 2017’s only college football national champs

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Congrats to all our many national champions.

UCF football team at Disney
UCF’s parade at Disney
Photo by Andrew Innerarity- for The Washington Post via Getty Images
  1. Alabama: Playoff winner, Sugar Bowl champ, win over Playoff No. 1 Clemson, and No. 1 in NCAA-recognized selectors (you know, that long list of computers and historians and polls the NCAA throws in its record books without really naming one the definitive authority) Congrove, Massey, and Sagarin.
  2. Georgia: Undefeated in regulation of title game, SEC champ, Rose Bowl champ, beat Auburn (giving UGA a valuable transitive win over UGA, a national champion), and No. 1 in NCAA-recognized selectors Anderson/Hester (hasn’t been updated yet, so hurry up and claim it) and Billingsley (same).
  3. UCF: Unbeaten, beat national champ Auburn, has two transitive wins over other national champs, has all sorts of circular transitive wins over those teams now that Bama beat Georgia who beat Auburn who beat Bama and Georgia (that’s four more transitive title wins right there for UCF), final No. 1 in NCAA-recognized selector Colley, and was No. 1 in NCAA-recognized selector Wolfe until Bama won, but UCF operates on a plane of existence in which that game didn’t happen, so nbd.
  4. Auburn: Blew out two national champs, only lost to four national champs, and won national champ Alabama’s division.
  5. Clemson: Beat national champ Auburn by more than national champ UCF did, beat national champ Alabama in the same calendar year as most of 2017’s season, and technically still ranks No. 1 in the Playoff rankings since the committee doesn’t update them after the season. Playoff No. 1!
  6. LSU: Beat national champ Auburn and outgained national champ Alabama.
  7. Notre Dame: Lost to national champ Georgia by only one point and beat national champ LSU, which beat national champ Auburn.
  8. Georgia Tech: Scheduled national champ UCF and didn’t lose.
  9. Maine: Same case as Georgia Tech.
  10. Memphis: Took national champ UCF to double overtime, which is even more overtimes than national champ Georgia managed against national champ Alabama. Nearly beat Iowa State, which beat the Big 12’s two best teams.
  11. Oklahoma: Fine, get the whole Playoff field in here.
  12. Iowa State: Beat Oklahoma.
  13. Syracuse: Sure, but it’s busy claiming 1987, I think.
  14. North Carolina A&T: Went undefeated in Division I and won a title game in the National Championship’s stadium before UCF or Alabama got around to it.
  15. North Dakota State: Won Division I’s actually undisputed tournament and won 14 games, more than Bama did.
  16. Austin Peay: Scored a lot of points against national champ UCF and, like UCF, was not invited to any tournaments.
  17. Texas A&M-Commerce: Won as many games as national champ UCF and also won a tournament.
  18. Mount Union: The NCAA’s only undefeated team to also win a tournament.
  19. Saint Francis: College football’s only team to go undefeated through 14 games.
  20. Tennessee: The Champions of Life deserve rings for providing valuable practice reps to national champions Alabama and Georgia.
  21. Nebraska: Hired national champion head coach Scott Frost.
  22. 1984 Florida, 1983 Auburn, 1960 Iowa, 1953 Notre Dame, 1899 Sewanee: Just a few teams that should start claiming old titles. Claim 2017 to make up for these, if you want.
  23. Ohio State: Stop. This is silly.