College football bowl projections and analysis: Top matchups, playoff breakdowns and more

We had the usual batch of wild plays, controversial decisions and close calls during Week 3 of the college football season, but we didn't have any upsets among the top 10 teams. But that doesn't mean there weren't some shakeups in the pecking order among teams or in our projected bowl matchups.

In addition to predicting the matchups for every single bowl game, Mark Schlabach and Kyle Bonagura provide key analysis on their playoff picks, most intriguing bowl matchup, coaches under pressure to make a bowl, fast-rising teams that could make a New Year's Six push and more.

All times Eastern

College Football Playoff

CFP National Championship Presented by AT&T
Lucas Oil Stadium (Indianapolis)
Jan. 10, 8 p.m., ESPN and the ESPN App

Bonagura: Alabama vs. Georgia
Schlabach: Alabama vs. Georgia

CFP Semifinal at Capital One Orange Bowl
Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Gardens, Florida)
Dec. 31, 3:30 p.m. or 7:30 p.m., ESPN and the ESPN App

Bonagura: Alabama vs. Iowa
Schlabach: Alabama vs. Oregon

CFP Semifinal at Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic
AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas)
Dec. 31, 3:30 or 7:30 p.m., ESPN and the ESPN App

Bonagura: Georgia vs. Oregon
Schlabach: Georgia vs. Iowa

Playoff breakdown

Bonagura: Alabama and Georgia self-select, leaving two spots for Oregon, Iowa and Oklahoma to fight for. The Sooners are the odd team out as they don't have a win that compares with the Ducks (Ohio State) or Hawkeyes (Iowa State) and weren't convincing again this week in a 23-16 win against Nebraska. With a pair of wins against ranked opponents, Penn State also is building a compelling résumé. The Nittany Lions travel to Iowa on Oct. 9 after games against Villanova and Indiana.

Schlabach: I nearly went with Georgia over Alabama for the top seed, but the Bulldogs' inability to defeat the Crimson Tide in the past probably prevented me from going there. Georgia's defense has played better than Alabama's to this point, and quarterback JT Daniels looked good in his return from an oblique injury. South Carolina's ability to hit big passing plays in a 40-13 loss raised some concerns about Georgia's secondary. The Crimson Tide were lucky to escape Florida with a 31-29 win. I'm sure Nick Saban is more than pleased that his top-ranked team has been brought back to earth. Iowa is my No. 3 team after a 30-7 win over Kent State, although I could have easily gone with Oregon. The Hawkeyes' home win against Indiana and road victory at Iowa State carry more weight for me than the Ducks' road win at struggling Ohio State.

New Year's Six

Dec. 30

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl
Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Atlanta)
7 p.m. on ESPN and the ESPN App

Bonagura: Clemson vs. Ohio State
Schlabach: Clemson vs. Notre Dame