After a fairly shocking college football weekend, the fifth round of playoff rankings have been released and oh how the mighty have fallen. After their loss to Auburn, Alabama has fallen out of the top four to the fifth spot, which in my humble opinion is too generous. But the highlight of the newest round of rankings is that FINALLY Wisconsin is in their rightful spot in the top four seeing as they are still undefeated.
As mentioned above, I think that even putting Alabama in the fifth spot is too generous because their strength of schedule is lackluster and their loss to Auburn shows that they are not as great as projected. If they had had a difficult schedule and lost to Auburn then maybe I could justify their fifth ranking overall. And speaking of Auburn, they’ve lost two games this season so are they second because they beat Alabama? Because shouldn’t undefeated Wisconsin be ranked higher? The same could be for Oklahoma being ranked higher than Wisconsin with their one loss. Granted, yes their win this past weekend sans Baker Mayfield was impressive.
Moving on to the other notable differences this time around, Miami’s 7th ranking is surprising because sure they lost to Pitt this past weekend, but that’s still only one loss overall. So really they should be ranked a bit higher than Alabama because they trounced teams like Notre Dame and honestly have been pretty exciting to watch this season.
The problem with these rankings that they are picked by a committee so it’s not just record based. There’s a human element and ultimately the committee is looking to put together the best product on the field during these four playoff games. And while there is the argument that there should be 8 teams in the playoff, I think that four makes the rankings hold more weight. If there were eight teams in the playoffs, I think there wouldn’t be intensity for players to play their hearts out every weekend. This system (while flawed) still works the best for college football as whole.
I say this at the end of every rankings post, but given last weekend’s results, there really is no way to know what will happen next week. In the an ideal world, Ohio State will beat Wisconsin and completely shake up the top four again.
But to end on a happy note, shout out to Northwestern for steadily making their way up to the 21st spot, GO CATS!