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Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, Washington get playoff nods

Alabama, Ohio State, Clemson and Washington make up the four-team field for the College Football Playoff. 
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Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Washington will compete in the College Football Playoff this year, the committee announced Sunday. 

The undefeated Crimson Tide receive the top seed after being ranked first all season long and will face Washington in the Peach Bowl on Dec. 31. Clemson and Ohio State will play in the other semifinal, the Fiesta Bowl. 

Other hopefuls Penn State and Michigan are left on the outside looking in. The Nittany Lions defeated Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game on Saturday and have a win over Ohio State on their resume, but the Buckeyes got the nod. Penn State was ranked fifth and Michigan sixth. 

The loss to Penn State is Ohio State’s only defeat of the season. The Buckeyes are 11–1, with wins over Michigan, Oklahoma and Wisconsin. 

Penn State's Big Ten championship victory was just a game—and that's enough

Clemson beat Virginia Tech 42–35 on Saturday night to win the ACC. The Tigers (12–1) boast wins over Louisville and Auburn. Their lone slip-up was a 43–42 loss to Pittsburgh on Nov. 12. 

Washington blew out Colorado in the Pac-12 Championship Game, 41–10, and finished with a 12–1 record. 

Oklahoma, Wisconsin, USC and Colorado round out the top 10.

Western Michigan is the highest-ranked team from a non-power conference and will earn a bid to the Cotton Bowl. 

The national championship game will be Jan. 9 in Tampa.