The top seven teams in the College Football Playoff rankings remained unchanged on Tuesday, as Alabama, Notre Dame, Clemson and Ohio State continue to occupy the top four spots.
Buckie remained at No. 4 despite canceling Saturday’s game in Illinois after an increase in COVID-19 cases within the program, with head coach Ryan Day testing positive.
Despite having played only four games, Ohio State remains ahead of the one-loss Texas A&M, which defeated LSU at home last week, and the one-loss Florida, which defeated Kentucky at home.
Gary Barta, chairman of the selection committee, said the committee discussed Texas A&M ranking ahead of Ohio State, but for now quarterback Justin Fields-led Bucky and his potential offense occupy the final playoff spot.
“When both of those teams were put side-by-side this morning and last night, that was just not enough to keep Ohio State’s Texas A&M ahead,” Barta said.
The Buckeyes resumed the team’s activities on Tuesday and expected to play again this week at Michigan State. He will have to play this week and next week to qualify for the Big Ten Championship game.
The College Football Playoff has not set any minimum number of games to be played. It is just for the selection committee to find out how few there are.
“Sometimes there is a discrepancy between a team that plays eight or nine games and a team that plays three or four games and obviously this is a problem [in ranking teams], ” Said Barta, who is Iowa’s athletic director.
Alabama and Clemson stayed after major wins, and Notre Dame learned on Tuesday that it secured a spot in the ACC Championship game as a member of a football conference in its first season. No. 6 Florida, No. 7 Cincinnati and No. 10 Miami all held their spots this week, and Georgia moved up to the number one spot after their win over South Carolina.
Northwestern was the only team in the starting CFP Top 10 to move from six places to 14th after a loss to Michigan State. Iowa State is the only newcomer in the top 10 to reach No. 9 after Friday’s road win against Texas, which dropped out of the rankings. Iowa State is virtually assured of a spot in the Big 12 championship game, in which it will face No. 11 Oklahoma.
While the top 10 remained mostly intact, there was some significant movement somewhere. Oklahoma State moved from eight places to 15th after its home win against Texas Tech. Iowa moved up five places to No. 19 after their home win against Nebraska.
BYU moved up to 13th after not playing last week. The FBS independent, The Cougars, is scheduled to play against San Diego State next December 12. Cincinnati is also closed this week due to COVID issues and will play against Tulsa on December 12, which moved up to 24th place.
Defending Pac-12 champion Oregon dropped from eight places to 23rd after a road loss to rival Oregon State. Washington, which improved to 3–0 after a historic comeback against Utah, begins its CFP ranking in 22nd place. The Duck and Huskies are scheduled to play in Oregon next week. USC, which canceled last week’s game against Colorado due to COVID-19 issues within its schedule, is the Pac-12’s highest-ranked team at No. 20.
Coastal Carolina moved up two places to 18th after improving to 9–0 on the season. The Chantlers welcome ESPN College GameDay this week for their game against the 9-1 Liberty. Louisiana, which opened the season with a win at Iowa State, scored 25th in the CFP ranking.
The CFP selection committee will release the rankings on 8 December and 15 December before unveiling its final list on 20 December.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.