Week 13’s College Football Playoff rankings will have a new look with a top-five team falling and more. I predict how things make shake out.
RANKINGS: Here are last week’s top 25 college football playoff rankings
The fourth of six CFP top 25 reveals happens on Tuesday, Nov. 22 on ESPN (here’s the full schedule; the fifth rankings are Nov. 29). Ahead of the announcement, here’s a prediction of how the committee could rank its top 25 teams. Note that these are my predictions and mine alone. I take a look at head-to-head results, schedule strength, games against ranked teams and more to help rank the teams how I think the CFP committee will do so. You can read the CFP committee’s official protocols here.
WEEK 12 RECAP: South Carolina crushes No. 5 Tennessee as No. 3 Michigan, no. 4 TCU survive in Week 12 of college football
College Football Playoff rankings predictions: Top 25 projections Week 13
- Georgia (11-0) | Previous: 1 — Georgia’s SEC dominance continued with a win over Kentucky.
- Ohio State (11-0) | Previous: 2 — It looked shaky, but Ohio State pulled out the victory.
- Michigan (11-0) | Previous: 3 — After a shaky win of its own, Michigan will battle Ohio State for a Big Ten Championship berth, bragging rights and more.
- TCU (11-0) | Previous: 4 — TCU stays put as the fourth-best undefeated team.
- Southern California (10-1) | Previous: 7 — After a ranked win over UCLA, the Trojans leapfrog LSU.
- LSU (9-2) | Previous: 6 — LSU defeated UAB, but its biggest win came when Tennessee lost, giving the Tigers more hope for the playoff.
- Alabama (9-2) | Previous: 8 — Alabama beat an FCS school to move to 9-2.
- Clemson (10-1) | Previous: 8 — Clemson was behind Alabama last week and will stay behind them this week after both teams won, regardless of the level of opponent.
- Oregon (9-2) | Previous: 12 — A top 10 win returns Oregon to the top 10.
- Tennessee (9-2) | Previous: 5 — Not only did Tennessee lose to an unranked South Carolina team, but it also lost quarterback Hendon Hooker for the year. That double-whammy knocks the Vols out of playoff contention and down five spots in the rankings.
- Penn State (9-2) | Previous: 11 — Penn State stands pat after beating Rutgers.
- Kansas State (8-3) | Previous: 15 — Kansas State is the second best team in the Big 12 after winning its last two games.
- Washington (9-2) | Previous: 17 — With a win and an Oregon loss, the Huskies can make the Pac-12 Championship game.
- Utah (8-3) | Previous: 10 — Utah drops from the top 10 after losing to a ranked Oregon team. The Utes are behind Washington here, just like they are in the Pac-12 standings.
- Notre Dame (8-3) | Previous: 18 — The Fighting Irish braved the elements to shut out Boston College.
- North Carolina (9-2) | Previous: 13 — After losing to Georgia Tech, the Tar Heels have to fall behind Notre Dame in this week’s rankings.
- UCLA (8-3) | Previous: 16 — After UCLA’s heartbreaking defeat to a crosstown rival, the Bruins only drop one spot because the loss came to a top-10 opponent.
- Florida State (8-3) | Previous: 19 — Florida State handled its business, defeating Louisiana 49-17.
- Tulane (9-2) | Previous: 21 — Tulane can clinch an AAC championship game berth with a win over Cincinnati to close the season.
- Ole Miss (8-3) | Previous: 14 — Hotty Toddy is cooling down after losing in back-to-back weeks, this time to an unranked Arkansas team.
- Oregon State (8-3) | Previous: 23 — Oregon State rises two spots after defeating Arizona State.
- Cincinnati (9-2) | Previous: 25 — At 9-2, Cincinnati remains in contention for a New Year’s Six bowl.
- South Carolina (7-4) | Previous: NR — The Gamecocks blasted Tennessee, a then top five team. That makes South Carolina the lone 7-4 team in the rankings.
- Coastal Carolina (9-1) | Previous: NR — Coastal Carolina had a bye last week but at 9-1 the Chanticleers deserve a spot in the rankings after a week off. Yet, Coastal Carolina only can rise so high after being left out of last week’s rankings with the same record.
- UCF (8-3) | Previous: 20 — UCF lost to Navy but hang on in the rankings thanks to wins over other ranked teams in Cincinnati and Tulane. Other teams under consideration include UTSA and Texas.
Dropped out: Oklahoma State (22), NC State (24)
CFP🏆: College Football Playoff rankings release schedule
Notable College Football Playoff rankings questions
Where does Tennessee land?
Tennessee lost to an unranked South Carolina team Saturday night, but its biggest blow came when Hendon Hooker was deemed out for the season Sunday afternoon. After those losses, an argument can still be made that Tennessee should still be ranked in front of LSU and Alabama because the Vols have head-to-head wins over both 9-2 teams. While that argument would be a solid point, a top-five team losing to an unranked opponent, losing its quarterback for the season AND remaining in the top-five just doesn’t make sense. All eyes will be tuned in to see where the Vols land.
UNDEFEATED TRACKER: FBS teams with perfect seasons so far
Can a ranked win finally get a one-loss Southern California in front of LSU?
In Week 12, Southern California beat then-No. 16 UCLA while LSU beat UAB. The Trojans were ranked on spot behind the Tigers last week despite having one less loss. A ranked win could be what it takes for the Trojans to move up in the rankings.