Coaches Poll vs. Collin Wilson’s Power Ratings: Notre Dame, USC Lead Biggest Disagreements

Coaches Poll vs. Collin Wilson’s Power Ratings: Notre Dame, USC Lead Biggest Disagreements article feature image
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Matt Cashore-Pool/Getty Images. Pictured: Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish football team.

The very first Coaches Poll Top-25 ranking was released Tuesday. Reigning national champion Alabama received all 63 first-place votes, which aligns with our own Collin Wilson’s 2021 power ratings.

Both the coaches and Collin clock Clemson in at No. 2, but let the madness begin thereafter.

2021 College Football Coaches Poll vs. Collin Wilson’s Power Ratings

Rankings are as of Aug. 10

Team Coaches Poll Collin’s Rating
Alabama 1 1
Clemson 2 2
Oklahoma 3 4
Ohio State 4 3
Georgia 5 9
Texas A&M 6 13
Notre Dame 7 39
Iowa State 8 6
North Carolina 9 5
Cincinnati 10 11
Florida 11 24
Oregon 12 19
LSU 13 30
USC 14 36
Wisconsin 15 8
Miami 16 7
Indiana 17 31
Iowa 18 21
Texas 19 20
Penn State 20 10
Washington 21 17
Oklahoma State 22 15
UL Lafayette 23 52
Coastal Carolina 24 44
Ole Miss 25 26

Notable Disagreements

Notre Dame made the 4-team playoff last season but doesn’t sniff Collin’s Top 25.

The Fighting Irish lost by a combined 41 points in their final two games against Clemson and Alabama, and were plus-6 in the turnover department in 2020.

USC earned a top-15 spot by the coaches, but is separated by more than 20 spots in Collin’s rankings.

Clay Helton’s club beat the two Arizonas by a combined five points, escaped UCLA by the same margin and lost to a mediocre Oregon squad in the Pac-12 championship tilt last season.

Few blue-bloods have underwhelmed more over the last decade than Miami has, but could 2021 be the year for Manny Diaz and Co.?

The Hurricanes’ offense improved leaps and bounds in coordinator Rhett Lashlee’s first season with the program. Miami ran 7.2 more plays per game than they did in 2019 and in turn saw a huge uptick in scoring (34 points per game compared to just under 23).

Another school Collin slots into the top-10 that the coaches omitted is Penn State.

The Nittany Lions trudged to a 4-5 record last fall in James Franklin’s worst season to date. But after a rocky start and a couple of one-score losses, Penn State is a potential positive regression candidate.

Sorry, Sun Belt

The coaches stuffed UL Lafayette and Coastal Carolina in the back of the polls, but power ratings aren’t buying the Sun Belt this fall.

Collin’s top team in the conference is Appalachian State (No. 37) — which didn’t crack the coaches poll — followed by Coastal Carolina (No. 44), then UL Lafayette (No. 52).

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