On Tuesday the new College Football Playoff Rankings were released, and we’ve got to be honest: There just isn’t as much to get upset about as there has been in weeks past! With the Top 5 teams remaining the same as last week, there wasn’t much movement at the top, and in turn, not a lot of change for each individual team’s path to the playoff.
Still, that doesn’t mean that the committee got everything right. They actually got a few teams wrong.
Here are seven.
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No. 23 Washington State Cougars (underrated)
The Cougars were ranked No. 22 last week, but it’s hard to understand the logic behind dropping them at all (even if it is only one spot) when their loss was to higher-ranked No. 10 Colorado.
Wazzu still has won eight of its last nine and has a solid win over Stanford, which is ranked one spot behind them. The Cougars also control their own Pac-12 title destiny, and would be headed to Levi’s Stadium with a win over Washington in the Apple Cup this week. How many teams in the 20’s could be playing for a conference championship a week from now?
This ranking seems especially dumbfounding when compared with the team ranked one spot ahead of the Coogs ...
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No. 22 Utah Utes (overrated)
Look, we all love Kyle Whittingham and what he has done and continues to do at Utah. But it feels like the Utes continue to hang around the periphery of the Top 25 based on name recognition and a win over USC which happened two months ago, in Sam Darnold’s first start at quarterback.
But since that USC game, well, the Utes have been average .... literally. They are just 4-3 in their last seven games, with two of their losses coming to sub-.500 teams in Cal and Oregon.
Frankly, this feels like a spot that could be better served going to a more deserving Group of Five school like South Florida, which could wrap up a 10-2 regular season on Saturday. The Bulls, for the record, have the same number of Top 25 wins (one) as the Utes do.
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No. 21 Western Michigan Broncos (underrated)
I say it every week, and I’m going to keep saying it until someone listens: The Broncos are woefully underrated. At this point, it feels like the committee has a vendetta against them. How do you explain the Broncos continuing to win, and not moving up a single spot in three weeks?
Again, I know the Broncos don’t play the toughest competition in the MAC, but at this point, they’ve done everything the committee could possibly ask for. They’ve beaten two teams from Power 5 conferences (Illinois and Northwestern) and they also, ahem ... HAVE BEATEN EVERYONE ON THEIR SCHEDULE! Doesn’t that mean something anymore?
The sad thing is, if Navy wins out, it feels like they would jump Western for the Group of Five automatic bid in the New Year’s Six bowl games. That’s unfair, and hopefully the committee fixes this before it’s too late.
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No. 15 Florida Gators (underrated)
If you’re a regular reader of this column, then you know I haven’t been all that high on Florida. And I am also willing to admit I was completely wrong on the Gators. After beating LSU last weekend on the road, they shut up the whole college football world. Including me.
So with that said, I’d like to admit that not only are the Gators not overrated, they’re actually underrated at this point. They’ve got just two losses overall, and now have two quality wins, against 7-4 Georgia and 6-4 LSU. This ranking seems especially weird when you consider that the Gators are in the same conference as the No. 13 team Auburn, and have one fewer loss overall (not to mention a head-to-head win over a Georgia team that just beat the Tigers).
Also, how can Florida possibly be behind ...
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No. 14 Florida State Seminoles (overrated)
A club which, quite literally, has no justification for being this high. The Seminoles don’t own a single Top 25 win, and have actually lost their only two games against Top 25 teams they’ve played this season.
Therefore, why are they ahead of a team like Tennessee, which has the same number of losses and better wins (No. 15 Florida, Georgia) overall? Or Nebraska, which has one fewer loss, in an unquestionably tougher conference.
Of all the goofy rankings, this one makes the least sense of anyone on the list.
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No. 12 USC Trojans (underrated)
Frankly, I can’t argue too much with the committee’s decision to slot USC here. I see their argument, and in their defense, the Trojans are still the highest-ranked three-loss team in the poll.
My only major gripe is that if these really are rankings of the “best” teams in the sport, are there anywhere near 11 teams better than USC? Considering there are two teams in the Top 10 that USC beat, I’d say the answer is “nope.”
No. 11 Louisville Cardinals (overrated)
Again, this is another one it’s hard to have a gripe with, since there aren’t a ton of teams worthy of moving ahead of them.
At the same time, we all saw them get stomped last week at Houston, and even before then, they weren’t playing great. Remember, they were trailing Wake Forest at halftime two weeks ago, and beat Virginia by just a touchdown before that.
Louisville is a solid team. But it’s hard to imagine them beating a few teams behind them in the standings, most notably USC at No. 12.