The College Football Playoff selection committee will reveal its first top 25 rankings on October 31. The Action Network will bring you the latest CFP rankings along with power ratings, current futures odds and some chatter about the paths of the potential teams involved throughout the remainder of the season.
Updated Odds – October 31st
|20||North Carolina State||-17.5|
|Legend: No Odds|
Kudos to the selection committee for picking Georgia at No. 1. The Bulldogs by far have the most complete resume, including a victory over No. 3 Notre Dame (+2150). It was a bit of a shock seeing Alabama (-160) at No. 2, even with one book offering a -4000 prop on them being No. 1 last week. The toughest team Bama has faced so far according to S&P+ Ratings? That would be Fresno State (ranked 25th in S&P+). Things should become much tougher for the Tide, as they’ll face four teams in the S&P+ top 30 (sorry Mercer). There are still viable scenarios in which Auburn or LSU could represent the West in the SEC Championship Game, but making the playoff as two-loss champions seems improbable at this point.
NC State’s chances of making the playoff were dashed with a loss to No. 3 Notre Dame (+2150) this past weekend, but they have a chance to spoil everything for the ACC Conference. No. 4 Clemson (+1300) visits the Wolfpack with the winner representing the Atlantic Division. If the Tigers survive, they have Florida State, The Citadel and South Carolina to play in their own quarterfinal in the ACC Championship Game. No. 10 Miami (+4750) and No. 13 Virginia Tech have a late kick Saturday to determine the leader of the Coastal Division. The loser of the Hurricanes and Hokies will have national title and conference hopes dashed.
Speaking of No. 3 Notre Dame (+2150), I will not be placing a future on them with games remaining against three teams in the top 25, including visits to No. 10 Miami (+4750) and No. 21 Stanford.
No. 12 Washington (+4750) remains the only one-loss team in the conference, and they have yet to visit No. 21 Stanford for the chance to compete in the Pac-12 Championship Game. In the South, No. 17 USC and No. 22 Arizona are the two-loss teams competing to make the title game. Unless two-loss teams are accepted into the playoff, the Huskies are the only real hope of even making the CFP field.
No. 9 Wisconsin (+2650), as suggested three weeks ago in this column, continues to roll. Their toughest test will come when they host Michigan on November 18th. Wisconsin can sleep through their remaining schedule, and a loss against Minnesota to end the year will not affect their Big Ten Championship game hopes. With No. 6 Ohio State (+400) beating No. 7 Penn State (+2650), all eyes were on the rankings release tonight to see where the Nittany Lions would be ranked. Coming in at No. 7 may seem like a bright spot for Penn State fans, but they do not have the remaining schedule to make any jumps into the top four.
No. 24 Michigan State has a great shot at spoiling everything in the Big Ten. They host the Nittany Lions this week with travel to Ohio State in Week 11. With two losses the Spartans should be out of the national championship race, but they hold the keys to spoiling playoff shots for the Buckeyes, Nittany Lions and Badgers.
The road to the Big 12 Championship still runs through Ames!! What a statement after No. 15 Iowa State defeated No. 8 TCU (+5000). One-loss teams No. 11 Oklahoma State (+3500) and No. 5 Oklahoma (+3500) square off at Bedlam this week. This is a knockout game for the national title. The Cowboys still have travel to Ames, while the Sooners have TCU left to play. One of these teams will need to run the table, and that includes winning a repeat game in the Big 12 Championship Game.
Group of Five
No. 18 Central Florida allowed 33 points to the Austin Peay Governors. With South Florida taking their first loss, UCF may not be too far behind in exiting the national title picture altogether. No recommendations will be made for the remainder of the season on any non-Power Five team.
Week 10 Add: Clemson
Clemson comes into the first ranking at No. 4. Out of all the teams remaining with one loss that have a chance to win their conference championships, the Tigers have the easiest schedule. The S&P+ ranks of teams on Clemson’s remaining schedule are 35, 75, The Citadel and 65. The ACC Championship would serve as a quarterfinal game against Miami or Virginia Tech (a team they have already beat). Clemson should beat NC State and remain in the College Football Playoff top four, and +1300 may be a last call before the Tigers breeze through the rest of November.
Week 7: Virginia Tech 100/1
Week 8: Wisconsin 25/1
Week 9: Georgia 12/1
Week 10: Clemson 13/1