The latest college football playoff rankings are in, and the Alabama Crimson Tide are the new No. 1. The top four in the College Football Playoff Committee’s bracket were destined to change after the Alabama Crimson Tide beat the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Saturday. But seeing Alabama No. 1 in new college football playoff rankings is somewhat surprising.
The Alabama football program was destined to jump after spending the past two weeks at No. 5 in the college football playoff picture. Tide fans were “crimson” after last Tuesday’s CFB playoff rankings were released, as few Bama football followers felt the TCU Horned Frogs should have held the fourth and final spot in the Week 3 playoff bracket.
“We feel like Alabama is the most complete team right now,” said CFB Playoff Committee spokesperson Jeff Long.
Seeing the Tide roll on up to the No. 1 spot still represents a dramatic jump. The Florida State Seminoles don’t have a signature win, and their inconsistency has left them behind by double digits several time this season only to see them come from behind to win. The result is a 10-0 record, the only undefeated team in the AP college football rankings and the only undefeated in the CFB Playoff Committee rankings.
Seeing an undefeated team drop to third is wild, especially considering the team above them, No. 2 Oregon, didn’t even play on Saturday.
As the college football playoff committee has said all along, it values the strength of schedule. And that’s where Oregon had the advantage over FSU and, presumably, will continue to have the advantage. At least as long as FSU continues to play inconsistently.
The Committee’s Jeff Long said as much in the press conference tonight.
“We look at their body of work, whether they’ve controlled the games, compared them to those around them,” Long said. His implication, of course, is that they’re not ranked more highly specifically due to their inconsistent play.
Mississippi State dropping to fourth is understandable. TCU arguably didn’t belong in last week’s college football playoff rankings, and the Mississippi State Bulldogs just barely lost Saturday to a powerful Alabama Crimson Tide football team. If the Committee was ranking teams on strength of schedule, there was no question Mississippi State would outrank TCU for the fourth and final spot in the playoff bracket.
The Bulldogs could in fact improve their ranking next week if they beat No. 8 Ole Miss. Of the top four teams in the new college football playoff ranking, Mississippi State has the toughest opponent next week and could supplant FSU and perhaps even Oregon depending on their performance.
Presuming all four teams win out, which is possible, this could be a preview of the four teams we’ll see at the end. The hardest remaining games are Ole Miss and Mississippi State, and Auburn and Alabama. Oregon plays its next two games against Colorado and Oregon State, the latter of which beat Arizona State this past weekend. Alabama’s next two games are Saturday against West Carolina and Nov. 29 against Auburn. Mississippi State will spend its next two Saturdays playing Vanderbilt and Ole Miss.
The latest College Football Playoff Committee rankings are a departure from the AP college football rankings released Sunday. Those showed FSU and Alabama taking the No. 1 and No. 2 spots, followed by the University of Oregon Ducks, the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the TCU Horned Frogs.