College Football Playoff selection committee chair Gary Barta walked back his controversial comments from earlier this week that Notre Dame's coaching change could potentially impact its ranking.
On Tuesday, Barta said that the College Football Playoff committee's principles allow them to consider teams based on players and coaches' availability, including the departure of Brian Kelly in Notre Dame's case.
"The committee obviously is aware of all the coaching changes while we were going through the rankings," Barta told ESPN on Tuesday. "This week it didn’t apply because the games had occurred and we evaluated based on those games.
"Once the championship games wrap up [...] our protocol does include the ability for the committee to consider a player or a coach not being available and should that have an effect on the outcome of a game, that can be considered. At this point, we’ll have to wait and see how that factors in."
However, on ESPN's College GameDay show on Saturday, Barta said he doesn't think the coaching change will impact Notre Dame's final ranking.
"I’d be really surprised if it factors into the conversation at all," Barta said.
On Friday, Notre Dame officially hired defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman as its next head coach. Sitting at No. 6 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings, the Fighting Irish will be keeping a close eye on Championship Saturday, regardless of whether its coaching situation could change their ranking.
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