College football is the best. Its any given Saturday. Craziness will undoubtedly happen. It is time for the annual November Texas A&M collapse. We had Iowa dismantling Ohio State, a 3 1/2 hour delay in the Michigan State win over Penn State (sidebar-Penn State is now 0-2 since chanting “We want Bama”. What did we learn from this kids?), a 1 win Sunbelt school taking a SEC school to the wire only to have the victory snatched by the jaws of defeat (another sidebar-that only revved up the heat on Bret Bielema at Arkansas), we had The U making a statement, Notre Dame losing 2 key players in game (next week the ol’ Catholics vs Convicts game should decide a playoff spot), and Bedlam was, well it was Bedlam. This all shakes out in a brand new Top 25 that I’m sure will be exactly like the one the College Football Playoff Committee releases next Tuesday (I’ll hold my breath). Here we have an initial ranking based on metrics: Offensive Efficiency (OE), Defensive Efficiency (DE), Special Teams Efficiency (STE), and Team Efficiency (TE). Consistency across the board will help your cause here. Then we mix in a Strength of Schedule Power Rating (SOS); and finally we look at head to head to sort out tie breakers, if any. The goal of this is winning and if you don’t win then you don’t climb the rankings, it is that simple. NO PARTICIPATION TROPHIES. Let the rankings begin:
25 – Arkansas State (5-2)
Last week – Tie 25
65th OE, 52nd DE, 11th STE, 47th TE, 105th SOS
This week – BYE
Next game – @ South Alabama 11/10/2017
The leaders in the Sunbelt Conference stay in the rankings this week. It’s becoming more and more apparent that an instate game with Arkansas should happen.
24 – Toledo (8-1)
Last week – 18
25th OE, 73rd DE, 24th STE, 37th TE, 81st SOS
This week – vs Northern Illinois (Win 27-17)
Next game – @ Ohio 11/08/2017
We keep Toledo in the rankings, still with that lone loss to the Hurricanes. The chaos required to get them in the New Year’s 6 was closer than expected with UCF’s close win over SMU.
23 – Memphis (8-1)
Last week – 22
32nd OE, 58th DE, 50th STE, 42nd TE, 71st SOS
This week – @ Tulsa (Win 41-14)
Next game – vs SMU 11/18/2017
Memphis controls its own destiny from here on out. IF they can win out, they will avenge their only loss (to UCF) and probably earn a bid to the Peach Bowl.
22 – Iowa (6-3)
Last week – NR
48th OE, 27th DE, 31st STE, 25th TE, 9th SOS
This week – vs Ohio State (Win 55-24)
Next game – @ Wisconsin 11/11/2017
Iowa may have messed up the Big 10’s chances of having a representative in the College Football Playoff with their demolition of the Buckeyes. They now have a chance to further mess that up if they can beat Wisconsin.
21 – Boise State (7-2)
Last week – 17
43rd OE, 38th DE, 14th STE, 28th TE, 67th SOS
This week – vs Nevada (Win 41-14)
Next game – @ Colorado State 11/11/2017
Back to back 41-14 wins for the Broncos, and once again Boise State is in the drivers seat in the Mountain West. The best possible scenario is the Las Vegas Bowl vs the Pac 12.
20 – Washington State (8-2)
Last week – NR
70th OE, 9th DE, 117th STE, 33rd TE, 33 SOS
This week – vs Stanford (Win 24-21)
Next game – @ Utah 11/11/2017
Washington State jumps back in the rankings after defeating Stanford. The last two games are on the road, after Utah they get two weeks to prepare for Washington. The Cougars can still get to the Pac 12 Championship Game.
19 – Michigan – (7-2)
Last week – 19
67th OE, 13th DE, 48th STE, 24th TE, 16th SOS
This week – vs Minnesota (Win 33-10)
Next game – @ Maryland 11/11/2017
The Wolverines look slightly better on offense, they actually have a pulse now. After this trip to Maryland things get real, real quick. At Wisconsin and vs Ohio State to finish the year…yikes.
18 – Penn State (7-2)
Last week – 8
8th OE, 14th DE, 10th STE, 5th TE, 4th SOS
This week – @ Michigan State (Loss 27-24)
Next game – vs Rutgers 11/11/2017
This is still the best team in the country based solely on metrics. However I cannot overlook 2 straight losses. They have decided to go away from Barkley for whatever reason and now they are paying the price.
17 – Michigan State (7-2)
Last week – NR
50th OE, 18th DE, 88th STE, 26th TE, 14th SOS
This week – vs Penn State (Win 27-24)
Next game – @ Ohio State 11/11/2017
Michigan State is proving that last years season was a fluke. They control their own destiny in the Big Ten East. With a win over Ohio State, they’d be in the drivers seat for the Big Ten Championship Game (and that is very possible the way things are going in the Big Ten).
16 – Oklahoma State (7-2)
Last week – 13
2nd OE, 20th DE, 130th STE, 9th TE, 13th SOS
This week – vs Oklahoma (Loss 62-52)
Next game – @ Iowa State 11/11/2017
The Cowboys lost the wildest big game I’ve ever heard about yesterday. They need to pick themselves up quickly because Iowa State is also coming off a loss and will be the home team this week. Things could spiral downward for OKST.
15 – USC (8-2)
Last week – 20
22nd OE, 32nd DE, 83rd STE, 20th TE, 19th SOS
This week – vs Arizona (Win 49-35)
Next game – @ Colorado 11/11/2017
After sweeping the State of Arizona in back to back weeks, the Trojans set their sights on invading Colorado this week. While the Rose Bowl is probably out of the question, the Fiesta Bowl is likely if the Trojans can win out.
14 – Virginia Tech (7-2)
Last week – 12
58th OE, 12th DE, 4th STE, 17th TE, 30th SOS
This week – @ Miami (Loss 28-10)
Next game – @ Georgia Tech 11/11/2017
Virginia Tech got dominated last night in Miami. While they beat up on the lesser teams in the ACC, they aren’t quite yet on par with the elite in the conference. The Hokies have their work cut if they want to win double digit games this year.
13 – UCF (8-0)
Last week – 5
9th OE, 22nd DE, 37th STE, 11th TE, 66th SOS
This week – @ SMU (Win 31-24)
Next game – vs Connecticut 11/11/2017
UCF was not its usual juggernaut self in a win over SMU. With 2 of the final 3 games at home, UCF can almost taste the Peach Bowl.
12 – Mississippi State (7-2)
Last week – 15
33rd OE, 7th DE, 25th STE, 14th TE, 25th SOS
This week – vs Massachusetts (Win 34-23)
Next game – vs Alabama 11/11/2017
Classic sandwich game result for Mississippi State, they were looking ahead to Bama and it almost got them. The metrics really like the Bulldogs, ranking them 6th in the country. All of that will be put to the test by Alabama this week.
11 – Ohio State (7-2)
Last week – 7
3rd OE, 19th DE, 65th STE, 7th TE, 3rd SOS
This week – @ Iowa (Loss 55-24)
Next game – vs Michigan State 11/11/2017
What an embarrassing loss for the Buckeyes at Iowa. They did not come ready to play. They’d better get ready to play the Spartans, its an 11 am kickoff and it seems everything is working against the Buckeyes this November.
10 – Auburn (7-2)
Last week – 14
20th OE, 4th DE, 79th STE, 8th TE, 2nd SOS
This week – @ Texas A&M (Win 42-27)
Next game – vs Georgia 11/11/2017
Well this has been fun all year for Auburn, they are a pretty good football team but they have the #1 and #2 teams left on their schedule in Georgia this week and Alabama to finish the season. Too bad they are gonna be the best 8-4 team in the country.
9 – Washington (8-1)
Last week – 10
16th OE, 5th DE,16th STE, 4th TE, 39th SOS
This week – vs Oregon (Win 38-3)
Next game – @ Stanford 11/10/2017
Suddenly that win over Rutgers ain’t looking so bad for Washington. This is the Pac 12’s best chance at the playoff now barring utter 2007 chaos. Be wary of the Friday night game.
8 – Clemson (8-1)
Last week – 11
13th OE, 3rd DE, 82nd STE, 6th TE, 8th SOS
This week – @ NC State (Win 38-31)
Next game – vs Florida State 11/11/2017
Good win for Clemson over a now reeling Wolfpack. This next game, no matter where its played would scare the hell out of me. This Florida State team has zero to play for but pride in its last few weeks of the year and Clemson needs to match the intensity I expect the Seminoles to bring.
7 – Oklahoma (8-1)
Last week – NR
1st OE, 69th DE, 126th STE, 12th TE, 1st SOS
This week – @ Oklahoma State (Win 62-52)
Next game – vs TCU 11/11/2017
Okay I’m a believer again in the Sooners. They lost me for awhile with how they played lackadaisical, but now they have everything set up for them. That includes a spot in the Playoff.
6 – TCU (8-1)
Last week – 9
26th OE, 11th DE, 5th STE, 10th TE, 6th SOS
Last game – vs Texas (Win 24-7)
Next game – @ Oklahoma 11/11/2017
Sooners. Frogs. Playoff. In. The Big 12 Championship Game before the Big 12 Championship Game happens this week. The winner of this game has the inside track to the Playoff but the loser could still avenge this loss if things break the right way.
5 – Notre Dame (8-1)
Last week – 6
5th OE, 6th DE, 84th STE, 3rd TE, 5th SOS
This week – vs Wake Forest (Win 48-37)
Next game – @ Miami 11/11/2017
Irish. Hurricanes. Playoff. In. This Playoff thing does have a way of sorting itself out doesn’t it? If Notre Dame can go to Miami and win, they’re as close to a lock as can be. Hopefully Wimbush and Adams are cleared for this game.
4 – Wisconsin (9-0)
Last week – 3
21st OE, 10th DE, 68th STE, 13th TE, 43rd SOS
This week – @ Indiana (Win 45-17)
Next game – vs Iowa 11/11/2017
We’ve been saying this all year, Wisconsin should be undefeated heading into the Big Ten Championship Game. At this point they should be favored against whoever they may face off against as well.
3 – Miami (8-0)
Last week – 4
17th OE, 15th DE, 121st STE, 15th TE, 27th SOS
This week – vs Virginia Tech (Win 28-10)
Next game – vs Notre Dame 11/11/2017
Miami showed the world that it is for real this year last night with a domination over Virginia Tech. If they do that again this week they will be the odds on favorite for the ACC to have a playoff representative.
2 – Alabama (9-0)
Last week – Tie 1
7th OE, 1st DE, 38th STE, 1st TE, 10th SOS
This week – vs LSU (Win 24-10)
Next game – @ Mississippi State 11/11/2017
After putting away LSU for the 6th (or was it the 7th) consecutive time last night, Alabama remains as one of the best 2 teams in the country. LSU came to fight and I’m sure Mississippi State will too.
1 – Georgia (9-0)
Last week – Tie 1
4th OE, 2nd DE, 45th STE, 2nd TE, 7th SOS
This week – vs South Carolina (Win 24-10)
Next game – @ Auburn 11/11/2017
Georgia resumes this Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry with Auburn this week, I think they are too good for another Prayer at Jordan-Hare but this is college football and nothing would be shocking. I’m sure Coach Smart will have them ready.
Dropped from the rankings: (16) Iowa State, (21) Stanford, (23) South Carolina, (24) NC State, & Tie (25) LSU