The first batch of College Football Playoff rankings has arrived! The Committee has spoken:
- Notre Dame
- Ohio State
- Penn State
- Oklahoma State
- Virginia Tech
- Iowa State
- Mississippi State
- NC State
- Michigan State
- Washington State
Don’t fret if your team isn’t in the Top 4 yet. The Committee’s initial decisions in the past haven’t been exact.
In 2014, only one team in the first rankings made it to the College Football Playoff, an undefeated Florida State team. In 2015, three of the four teams picked in Week 10 made the cut after the regular season, while in 2016, two teams were correctly predicted: Alabama and the eventual National Champion, Clemson.
Taking a look at the rankings, the first thing that stands out is that the Alabama Crimson Tide are not the #1 team in the nation. Georgia has secured that spot in the first batch of rankings after the Bulldogs have notched quality wins over #3 Notre Dame and #16 Mississippi State.
Alabama, on the other hand, has arguably zero quality wins after their win over then-third-ranked Florida State turned to dirt when the Seminoles lost their fifth game of the season 35-3 to Boston College.
If all goes as planned in the SEC, #1 Georgia will face #2 Alabama in the SEC Championship. The loser may not even leave the Top 4 depending on the outcome.
There are a handful of teams still in the hunt for a College Football Playoff Berth. #9 Wisconsin and #10 Miami are both undefeated. If they win out (and win their conference), the Badgers and Hurricanes should crack into the Top 4.
As for long shots, don’t sleep on #15 Iowa State. The Cyclones already have two wins over Top 5 teams, Oklahoma and TCU. With the Big 12 Championship coming back this season, another win over a quality Big 12 team could get them in.
These rankings aren’t the “end all be all” for who will be in the National Championship; but, it is a good benchmark to see where we are in Week 10.