The college football season is set to kickoff with five games this Saturday before everyone gets the year underway next weekend, and as such, experts are starting to make their picks for the College Football Playoff.
ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit is the preeminent analyst in the sport, and he revealed his four picks for the playoff along with his list of annual Herbie awards. He didn't select any upsets, predicting that Alabama, Ohio State, USC and Florida State will finish as the top four teams in the country with Ohio State beating Alabama in the national championship game.
"Even though they are meeting in Week 1, I have both Alabama and Florida State in my College Football Playoff," Herbstreit said.
His picks are the top four teams in the preseason AP poll, so he expects chalk to hold up throughout the entire season.
The top four teams have never finished the season in those spots since the College Football Playoff was created. However, in 2014, all four playoff teams started the season ranked in the top five.
The Crimson Tide are the only team that has made the CFP every season, while Ohio State has made it twice. Florida State hasn't made it since the inaugural season.
The Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl will host the College Football Playoff semifinal games this season on New Year's Day. The national title game will played one week later, Jan. 8, 2018, at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.