College Football Playoff Rankings, After Week 4: What Would They Be?
If the regular season was over right now, how would the College Football Playoff committee vote?
2017 College Football Playoff Rankings After Week 4 Would Be …
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If the season ended at this very moment and the College Football Playoff committee had to make their call, who’d be in the tournament? Who’d be left out, and what would the CFP top 25 be?
Based only on what has happened so far and what the committee would have to work with – who has the big wins? – here’s what the rankings would look like.
Remember, beating great teams matters – it’s based on schedule and big wins so far. The committee members argue the merits, but it’s almost all based on resume – and a little bit about the eye test. If the vote was right now, the results would be …
25. Miami (2-0)
So far, this would still be based on belief and the eye test, Beating Bethune-Cookman and Toledo wouldn’t be worth ranking any higher.
24. NC State (3-1)
Beating Florida State at Florida State might be enough to get the Wolfpack a whole lot higher than this, but the loss to South Carolina is a drag.
23. South Florida (4-0)
There isn’t a good win yet. Illinois? Temple? It’s going to take a while for the Bulls to get any respect – the Houston game isn’t until late October.
22. West Virginia (3-1)
The issue with the ranking would be the good win – there isn’t one. The Mountaineers would get by on three straight games with 56 points or more, and a good showing in the loss to Virginia Tech.
21. Washington State (4-0)
Beating Boise State isn’t that big a deal at this point, and blowing up Montana State, Oregon State and Nevada wouldn’t warrant a ranking any higher than this.
20. Utah (4-0)
At some point, Utah has to beat someone with a pulse. If BYU and a road win at Arizona are the best performances, that’s a problem. But the good games are coming.
19. Mississippi State (3-1)
The LSU blasting still resonates. Beating Louisiana Tech 57-21 would look terrific on paper – or the iPads with the formulas the CFP uses.
18. Louisville (3-1)
Just how much respect would the Cardinals get for beating Purdue and North Carolina? Some, but getting blown out by Clemson would be a problem in the current CFP ranking world.
17. Auburn (3-1)
There isn’t a strong enough win to warrant a higher ranking. Georgia Southern, Mercer, and Missouri doesn’t cut it, but battling Clemson in a 14-6 loss on the road would be the calling card.
16. Ohio State (3-1)
The Buckeyes are starting to look the part again. The Oklahoma loss at home is still a killer, but the real problem might be the wins. Indiana, Army and UNLV? Not yet, Buckeyes.
15. Texas Tech (3-0)
The wins over Arizona State and Houston are both strong enough to give the Red Raiders respect in the strength of schedule department. It would be hard for the committee members to argue against the start.
14. Notre Dame (3-1)
The CFP would give the Irish more respect than the other rankings. With a walloping of Michigan State on the road, and the lone loss a tight battle with Georgia, they should probably be considered for the top 15.
13. Florida (2-1)
The Gators could easily be 0-3, but they aren’t. They’re the ones who beat Tennessee, and they handed Kentucky its only loss. It’s not pretty, but those – according to the numbers – are two solid wins.
12. San Diego State (4-0)
With a win at Arizona State and another over Stanford, the Aztecs have better resume wins than a whole slew of teams ranked higher. Those will have to do, though, with no other dangerous game left outside of a home date against Boise State.
11. Wisconsin (3-0)
Blasting away on BYU was nice, but there still isn’t a good win yet. This ranking would be on speculation and belief.
10. Virginia Tech (4-0)
There’s absolutely nothing else to get excited about other than that great opening weekend win over West Virginia. That chance is coming with Clemson up next.
9. Washington (4-0)
Is it a big deal to blowout Colorado on the road? Absolutely, but everyone ranked higher has a better resume.
8. Penn State (4-0)
Remember, it’s based on the teams beaten and the overall resume. Winning at Iowa might have been fun and nice, but there’s nothing else. Everyone ranked higher has two real wins.
7. USC (4-0)
The Texas win – according to the numbers – looks worse now after Maryland lost to UCF. Beating Stanford and Cal, though, would be good enough to help the Trojans push for the top five.
6. Michigan (4-0)
The Wolverines might not seem all that impressive to the public, but they handed Florida its only win and beat Purdue on the road in a blowout – even if it took a while to get there.
5. TCU (4-0)
Beating Arkansas on the road was good, but whacking around Oklahoma State in Stillwater was even better. It could be argued that those two wins are better than anything anyone has done.
4. Oklahoma (4-0)
No one has a better win so far than Oklahoma’s victory at Ohio State. The struggles against Baylor, though, would be just enough to knock the Sooners down a little bit. Even so, being in the top four is all that matters.
3. Georgia (4-0)
You could make a legitimate case for the No. 1 spot. Georgia handed Notre Dame its only loss, and it was in South Bend. The Dawgs crushed Mississippi State last week, after those other Bulldogs beat LSU.
2. Clemson (4-0)
The wins over Auburn and Louisville would be just enough to put the defending national champs close to the top spot, but struggling a wee bit against Boston College – at least for a while – would put them at No. 2.
1. Alabama (4-0)
It’s funny that blowing away Vanderbilt would be impressive, but considering the Commodores beat Kansas State and were unbeaten, it counts. The win over Florida State, though, doesn’t have the same pop now after the Noles’ loss to NC State.
College Football Playoff After Week 4 Would Be …
1. Alabama vs. 4. Oklahoma
2. Clemson vs. No. 3 Georgia