College Football Playoff Rankings prediction: Cincinnati on outside as SEC, Big Ten split initial top four

1 The Bulldogs are the dominant crew in faculty soccer to this point this season. They’ve an elite protection that has but to surrender greater than 13 factors in a sport. Most not too long ago, Georgia compelled three turnovers in 3 minutes late within the first half in opposition to Florida. The offense turned the primary two into one-play landing drives, and the protection returned the third for a rating itself. That turned an in any other case shut sport into one other rout.     2 The Spartans received their greatest sport of the season to this point, coming from behind to beat Michigan 37-33. That provides MSU the standard win that it was lacking. Being undefeated in opposition to a very good schedule with a win in opposition to a crew extremely ranked on this listing means the Spartans needs to be second solely to Georgia this week.     3 This could tie the report for the best place to begin for a crew with a loss, however it isn’t that uncommon. It has occurred three different instances, excluding the 2020 season, however this could be simply the second time a crew began this excessive within the rankings having misplaced to a crew ranked beneath them. The Crimson Tide are so good that many nonetheless anticipate them to win the CFP.     4 The Buckeyes handed an enormous check on Saturday with a win over Penn State at house. It’s their first win over an opponent that’s more likely to stay ranked this season. Ohio State is the other of Georgia in that it has the most effective offense within the nation to this point. Alabama is No. 2.     5 This could be the best rating ever for a Group of 5 crew, however the Bearcats have earned it. The win over Notre Dame is holding up to this point, and though they’ve the second-lowest lowest ranked power of schedule of any crew on this high 25, they’ve dealt with this schedule like a top-five crew ought to.     6 The Sooners took benefit of a crew that had simply fired its coach and obtained its second blowout within the final three video games. The change of quarterbacks appears to be working effectively, however it’s exhausting to inform with their schedule. Their SOS is barely barely larger than that of the Bearcats, however Oklahoma doesn’t have the standard win that Cincinnati does. The Sooners’ finest win got here at Kansas State.     7 The Wolverines have been on-brand for the Jim Harbaugh period in dropping at Michigan State on Saturday. He’s now 3-4 in opposition to the Spartans and 0-9 away from house in opposition to high 10 groups. After all, these are usually not straightforward video games to win.     8 The ACC is a convention that can see its groups endure within the rankings for a collectively poor nonconference efficiency. The league is 5-10 in opposition to Energy 5 competitors to this point with two video games left in opposition to Notre Dame. The Demon Deacons are the final unbeaten crew within the ACC and have one of the vital prolific offenses in faculty soccer. They’ve but to be held below 35 factors in a sport.     9 Talking of poor nonconference efficiency, the Pac-12 has been a scorching mess this season. The league is a depressing 9-16 vs. FBS competitors — that is not simply Energy 5 however FBS. Solely Convention USA and the MAC have worse data in opposition to that group. Throw in not one however two losses to FCS colleges and you’ll see why the Geese’ power of schedule could worsen each time they play. The distinction in power of schedule will maintain Oregon behind the Buckeyes so long as they’ve the identical report. The Geese are already greater than 30 spots behind OSU in these rankings, and the Buckeyes have but to hit the meat of their schedule.     10 The Preventing Irish have what measures out to be a very good schedule as a result of there aren’t any horrible groups on it. All of their opponents besides Cincinnati and Florida State (3-5) are both 4-4 or 5-3. I don’t anticipate the committee to be fooled by the Irish’s SOS rating, however that Wisconsin win is beginning to look higher.     11 The Cowboys bounced again from their first lack of the season with a 55-3 pasting of Kansas. They management their very own destiny for the Large 12 Championship Sport as a result of they maintain the head-to-head tiebreaker over Baylor.     12 Baylor has two wins over groups in these rankings. The Bears defeated Iowa State and BYU at house earlier this season. They can even get Oklahoma at house in just a few weeks, so there’s a probability for development.     13 The Tigers have performed a very good schedule that options wins over Ole Miss and at Arkansas. Their solely losses got here at Penn State and at house to Georgia. In the event that they win out, which implies beating Alabama, the Tigers will play for the SEC championship. 14 Ole Miss misplaced at Auburn 31-20 for its second defeat of the season. The opposite was at Alabama. It does have a top quality win over Arkansas, however we should see how effectively that holds up because the season winds down.     15 The Aggies have one of many greatest wins of the season, which came visiting Alabama just a few weeks in the past. That has sparked a three-game successful streak. No one is aware of if Haynes King, the beginning quarterback who was injured within the sport at Colorado, can be again this season, however Zach Calzada has crammed in properly. The Aggies are again in motion this week and internet hosting Auburn.     16 The Cougars lit up Virginia’s protection for 66 factors in a win at house. BYU is already the king of the Pac-12 with 4 wins in opposition to the convention and a sport left at USC. Possibly they need to simply be declared the Pac-12 South champions. BYU has performed two video games in opposition to groups in these rankings. It misplaced at Baylor and beat Utah at house.     17 The Hawkeyes obtained smoked for the second sport in a row. This time, it was Wisconsin taking them to the woodshed in a 27-7 defeat. The takeaways which have fueled the Iowa offense have changed into giveaways. Iowa has turned the ball over seven instances within the final two video games and solely gotten one in return.     18 The Wildcats got here out of an off week following the robust loss to Georgia and obtained beat once more, this time at Mississippi State. The Wildcats would nonetheless have a shot at a New Yr’s Six sport, however ending 10-2 is a should. The SEC East belongs to the Dawgs.     19 The Nittany Lions misplaced their third straight sport, falling at Ohio State, 33-24. That loss doesn’t harm a lot, nor does the one at Iowa, however the loss to Illinois in between has derailed what may have been a very good season.     20 The Razorbacks obtained off to a flying begin this season with a blowout win over Texas and a victory over Texas A&M. Now, they’re in final place within the SEC West, however they’re solely 1-3 and all 4 of these video games have been performed in opposition to groups within the high 15 of those rankings.     21 The Badgers appeared left for useless after Michigan ran them out of the Large Home a month in the past. Three straight wins have adopted, every extra spectacular than the earlier one. Wisconsin will be the favourite once more within the Large Ten West, identical to it was to begin the season.     22 The Bulldogs have turned issues round since back-to-back losses to finish September. They’ve now received three out of 4 with the loss coming to Alabama. Two of these wins are in opposition to groups ranked larger on this listing.     23 The Cougars have performed the worst schedule of anybody in these rankings, however the win over SMU was massive. It offers Houston the leg up within the race to play Cincinnati within the AAC Championship Sport. 24 The Cyclones simply dangle within the rankings after a loss at West Virginia. The win over Oklahoma State is saving them for now, however their schedule is being harm by video games with UNLV, Kansas and FCS Northern Iowa.     25 The Utes successfully have a two-game lead within the Pac-12 South as a result of the crew one sport again is Arizona State and Utah has the tiebreaker with the Solar Devils. It’s exhausting to choose a second-best crew on this convention, and I can’t be shocked if Oregon is the one ranked crew on the finish of the season.

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