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The debut of the College Football Playoff rankings this previous week has turned a lot of the eye on which groups are in place to vie for a nationwide championship. These standings additionally are inclined to render the standard polls as much less essential since they don’t have any bearing on the playoff image.
Or do they?
The preliminary playoff rankings intently mirrored how the Associated Press and Amway polls from final week regarded, with just a few exceptions. In some methods, these polls served as a template for the playoff choice committee to make use of after which construct from.
Will that committee do the identical this week? We’ll discover out Tuesday, however for now we will nonetheless break down how the AP’s media voters and coaches within the Amway ballot did with their rankings.
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The Big Ten’s playoff outlook took a serious hit Saturday with Ohio State and Penn State each dropping on the street. Michigan State is to thank—or blame—for the takedown of PSU after beating the Nittany Lions 27-24 on a area aim on the buzzer.
And the pollsters rewarded MSU for that victory, leaping them 11 spots to No. 13 within the Associated Press rankings and into the Amway ballot at No. 16. No different crew rose greater than seven locations in both ballot.
Had MSU not misplaced at Northwestern in triple time beyond regulation the week earlier than, we is likely to be discussing Sparty as a authentic playoff contender since its solely different loss is to Notre Dame. Instead, the Spartans are tied with Ohio State for first within the East Division and now go to Columbus on Saturday with a possible spot within the Big Ten title sport on the road.
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Wisconsin is certainly one of 5 remaining unbeaten groups within the nation and the one one from a Big Ten Conference that not has any one-loss groups. The Badgers’ newest win, 45-17 at Indiana, makes them a digital lock to be the league’s West Division consultant within the convention title sport.
So why did Associated Press voters drop them from fourth to sixth regardless of their most dominant convention victory of the season? Just look to the primary playoff rankings, which had Wisconsin at No. 9.
The choice committee wasn’t impressed with Wisconsin’s physique of labor, which does not embrace a win over a ranked crew, and now it appears like many AP voters have determined that is how they need to consider the Badgers as a substitute of how they’d beforehand made their badessments.
The Amway coaches voters weren’t as influenced by the playoff committee, as they moved Wisconsin up one spot to No. Three.
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The knocks in opposition to Wisconsin are justified as a result of two of the three groups it has overwhelmed who’ve profitable information (Utah State and Florida Atlantic) are from non-power leagues. With Miami, the difficulty so far hadn’t been who it had defeated however how the Hurricanes had achieved so.
In different phrases, Associated Press voters did not suppose they had been pbading the attention take a look at in slim wins over Florida State, Georgia Tech, Syracuse and lowly North Carolina by a mixed 18 factors.
It appears just like the Hurricanes’ 28-10 win over then-No. 13 Virginia Tech on Saturday modified the tune of some voters. They moved up two spots to No. 7, whereas the Amway coaches saved them at No. 6.
Miami continues to be behind a trio of one-loss groups within the AP ballot and two groups with blemishes within the Amway ballot. Good factor it’ll have the possibility to do one thing about that within the close to future.
The Hurricanes host Notre Dame, which is No. Three within the AP and No. 5 within the Amway, on Saturday. And baduming they attain the ACC title sport they’re going to get to tackle No. four Clemson as nicely.
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There’s all the time going to be a bias towards power-conference groups within the polls, and do not count on that to vary anytime quickly. But with solely 5 unbeaten groups remaining within the nation, would not it stand to cause that the fifth member of that group ought to be getting somewhat extra respect no matter what league they arrive from?
UCF received 31-24 at SMU on Saturday to enhance to Eight-Zero, a file that features victories over Maryland and a ranked Memphis crew. The Knights are profitable by a mean of 28.2 factors per sport.
Associated Press voters have determined that is nonetheless solely adequate to place UCF at No. 14, only one spot greater than every week in the past, and within the Amway ballot, it’s up two locations to No. 12.
The Knights had been leapfrogged by Auburn and Michigan State within the AP ballot and by Auburn within the Amway rankings.
We’re not suggesting UCF ought to be excessive sufficient to be a playoff contender, however perhaps Top 10? Perhaps this may change in just a few weeks after it performs No. 22/21 South Florida within the regular-season finale and probably No. 20/19 Memphis once more within the American Athletic Conference championship.
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Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City has been a home of horrors for the Big Ten East Division’s high groups, with Michigan dropping there final season and Penn State narrowly escaping earlier this fall. Ohio State joined the record of huge names to move house shaking its head, getting blown out 55-24 by Iowa on Saturday.
The Associated Press voters felt that monster efficiency, which included essentially the most factors ever scored in opposition to an Urban Meyer-coached crew, was sufficient to place the three-loss Hawkeyes into the ballot at No. 25. The Amway coaches weren’t as impressed, giving Iowa solely sufficient votes to be No. 27 total.
Iowa is ranked for the primary time for the reason that last regular-season ballot in 2016, when it was No. 21. This yr’s crew is 6-Three with its losses (to 7-2 Penn State, at 7-2 Michigan State and at 6-Three Northwestern) by 16 factors.
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Well, no less than we made it into November with out giving a Top 25 spot to a crew that had misplaced thrice. It was a very good run.
Voters apparently determined they may maintain off not, as collectively they put 5 three-loss squads into the Associated Press and Amway polls. Iowa State, at No. 24 within the AP and No. 23 within the Amway, is a double entrant. The AP has West Virginia (which simply beat ISU) at No. 23 and Iowa at No. 25, and the Amway ballot consists of North Carolina State at No. 24 and LSU at No. 25.
Arizona and Stanford fell out of the polls after getting their third losses, so it may have been worse.
Or it may have been significantly better as a result of there are a number of groups with two or fewer losses who may have been ranked. First and foremost is Toledo, which is Eight-1 with its loss coming at unbeaten Miami, but the Rockets are unofficially 28th and 29th within the polls based mostly on the variety of votes they earned.
Two-loss groups that stay unranked embrace Arkansas State, Army, Boise State, Florida International, Ohio, San Diego State and Troy. That group, all from exterior the Power Five, has mixed to beat 4 energy groups however garnered solely 48 votes on AP ballots and 85 on Amway ballots.
Statistics are offered by CFBStats except in any other case famous. Follow Brian J. Pedersen on Twitter at @realBJP.