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No. 8 Cincinnati vs. Indiana matchup and 2021 CFB playoff implications for Bearcats win

The Bearcats and Hoosiers faced off Saturday. We break down what this matchup means for the 2021 College Football Playoff.

Cincinnati Bearcats quarterback Desmond Ridder hands the ball off to Cincinnati Bearcats running back Jerome Ford during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

After being down 14-0 in the second quarter, the No. 8 Cincinnati Bearcats clawed their way back and eventually toppled the Indiana Hoosiers 38-24 on Saturday.

Luke Fickell’s bunch was able to successfully add a Big Ten scalp to their collection as they continue to build a national profile for themselves. But what does this win do for their College Football Playoff chances? Well, it’s a huge for the Bearcats.

Beating a Big Ten school like Indiana on the road in convincing fashion is a big resume boost for Cincinnati and they capitalized on an opportunity they couldn’t afford to let slip away. When you’re an AAC school (well, for now), your margin for error is zero among the CFP committee if you want to be included in these discussions, so a win like the one they nailed on Saturday will keep them in the Top 10.

Where they can really start to make their case is in two weeks when heading back across the Indiana state line to face the No. 12 Notre Dame Fighting Irish. A road victory over the Irish would do wonders for their case moving forward.