Oklahoma lost 38-31 at home on Saturday, to an Iowa State team led by their backup quarterback. It was a bad loss — about as bad a loss as you'll see in power conference play.
According to 538's infinitely-fun college football playoff projection tool, the loss dropped the Sooners' playoff likelihood from 45% at the start of the day to 16% — from third overall behind Alabama and Clemson to ninth overall behind the Tide and Tigers, Washington, Georgia, Penn State, Wisconsin, Ohio State, and TCU.
However, the Sooners' destiny is still in their own hands. The margin for error is just gone.
All three College Football Playoff fields have included three teams with a loss on their resume, but no playoff field has featured a team with two losses. So as long as Oklahoma beats Oklahoma State and TCU in back-to-back weeks in early November, and wins the first Big 12 Championship game, they are in. No pressure right?
Here's a look at all 12 teams that have played in the college football playoff, and when their losses happened:
Most of these losses happened later in the season than Oklahoma's loss to Iowa State, and many of them were to unranked opponents as well.
In fact, it might be in Oklahoma's favor that Iowa State was unranked — quality wins are more important than bad losses, as we've seen, so as long as the Sooners win out (not an easy task), they still should make the College Football Playoffs.
It's not going to be easy Oklahoma fans, but you need to root for TCU and Oklahoma State to win every game they play aside from their games with the Sooners. The better these teams play, the more they win, the better those wins would look for Oklahoma.
Oklahoma's playoff chances are down but not out. All they have to do is win.