Welcome to the College Football Top 10 Power Rankings Week 13 As it Should Be. Every year there is always talk about the potential for chaos. This season looks like it might just happen. What happens if Georgia beats LSU in the SEC championship, Minnesota beats Ohio State in the Big Ten Championship, Oregon dominates Utah in the Pac-12 championship, Oklahoma finishes 12-1, and Alabama looks good with Mac Jones at QB? How can the committee possibly figure out who the four best/most deserving teams are?
Wouldn’t it just make more sense to have an 8-team playoff? The five Power 5 champions and highest-ranked Group of 5 team would get automatic bids. The two remaining spots would be at-large bids.
Rankings should be fair and unbiased, but that’s not the world we live in when preseason polls ultimately affect the final rankings.
I always talk about how big of an advantage playing eight conference games is for the ACC and SEC. In addition to the math that forces more losses within the conference, there is a grinding element to playing nine conference games. Injuries mount during the season and have a huge impact on a team’s record. Imagine if Alabama were playing Missouri, Miss St (again), or Florida this weekend instead of Western Carolina. All the injuries they have would affect the outcome. This is what happens in the Big Ten, Pac-12, and Big-12.
College Football Playoff
After two sets of CFB Playoff Committee rankings, we have more information to put playoff scenarios together. So here is how it should shake out at this point. Check back here on Tuesday for the Road to the Playoff series where we examine every team’s path to the top 4.
- SEC Champion- LSU and Georgia have the inside track to play in the SEC championship. The conference could make a case for two teams if 1-loss UGA beats LSU.
- Undefeated or 1-loss Big Ten Winner– (Ohio State/Minnesota/Penn State): The only thing that could mess up the Big Ten selection is if 2-loss Wisconsin wins the Big Ten Championship.
- Clemson– They have no competition in the ACC so they will finish undefeated with a string of blowout victories.
- Pac-12 Champion– (Oregon/Utah) If both teams finish the season 11-1 the conference championship game will feature a top 10 showdown. And both teams are playing exceptional football right now.
The Big 12 is in trouble. Oklahoma can’t play offense or defense in the first-half for the last three weeks and there are no signature wins possible to jump other teams.
The Rules: No Bias, No Bull College Football Rankings
There is no more unbiased ranking out there than Unafraid Show’s College Football Top 10 Rankings Week 6. I get criticized from time to time by people who only want to see the college football world through the lens of the AP Poll. These rankings are not going to look like the AP Poll. Open your eyes to see a different view of evaluating the top 10. Most polls including the College Football Playoff Committee give college blueblood teams a massive “benefit of the doubt.” I don’t believe in that. Teams are ranked by the correct criteria: quality wins, schedule played, and dominance. After the preseason rankings, only games played matter. No consideration is given for future games.
I re-rank the top 10 every Sunday from scratch. The previous week’s rankings do not factor into the next week. So, the rankings will change, sometimes drastically every week because we will have new information. So make sure to come back every Sunday. For reference, you can check College Football Top 10 Power Rankings Week 12.
College Football Top 10 Rankings Week 13:
Next Up: Florida, Wisconsin, Michigan, Iowa, Auburn
10. Penn State (9-1)
Last Week: 34-27 (W) vs Indiana
James Franklin’s team bounced back from the Minnesota loss with a win, but they got ZERO style points. Indiana is a good football team at 7-3, but Ohio State beat them 52-10. They received low marks for dominance but got a solid win. The Nittany Lions are just too limited offensively to compete for a national championship. Sean Clifford has only thrown for over 200 yards once in the last five games. That just won’t cut it against the elite teams.
Everything is on the line for Penn State this week at Ohio State. Might they shock the world?
It’s hard to move up the College Football Top 10 Power Rankings Week 13 As it Should Be when you have a dog fight against an unranked team, everyone who was looked at as better dominated, and the team that beat you lost a close game against a ranked team.
9. Minnesota (9-1)
Last Week: 19-23 (L) at Iowa
Playing against Iowa’s defense will make any offense look like a shell of itself. The Golden Gophers found themselves down 20-3 before they could get their feet underneath them. This game felt like the complete opposite of their game against Penn State. Iowa jumped out big, Minnesota came roaring back but didn’t have enough in the tank to get it done.
Minnesota has games against Northwestern and Wisconsin left. Both have turned into must-wins if they are to keep their CFB Playoff hopes alive.
8. Oklahoma Sooners (9-1)
Last Week: 34-31 (W) vs Baylor
Oklahoma forgot how to start football games. The Sooners have nine lives. I wish Oklahoma had a difference mascot so I could call them the “cardiac cats”. For the second week in a row, the Sooners have snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. There is a finite number of times you can successfully execute big second-half comebacks. Two Saturdays ago, they barely outlasted Iowa State. Last Saturday they broke Baylor fans’ hearts after coming back from a 31-3 hole.
If it weren’t for UCLA coming back from a 32-point late 3rd quarter deficit to win, OU’s comeback would have been by far the best of the year.
Lincoln Riley and Alex Grinch are playing with fire with their defense. Over the last three weeks, second-half Oklahoma looks like a playoff team. First-half Oklahoma shouldn’t even be a top 25 team.
Check out our Pac-12 Football Podcast, Pac-12 Apostles:
7. Utah (9-1)
Last Week: 49-3 (W) vs UCLA
Every college football analyst in the country is sleeping on Utah. No one is giving them the respect they deserve except the College Football Rankings Top 10 As It Should Be. They haven’t received 1/10 of the coverage as even Minnesota who doesn’t get a lot. Whoever they play in the bowl game will be in for a rude awakening. Their defense has only allowed over 13 points three times this season and has held five opponents to single digits.
Tyler Huntley may be having the best season of any quarterback in the Pac-12. Some are even arguing they are better than the Oregon Ducks. If you haven’t watched Utah play, Florida would be a really good comparison except UF has more explosive wide receivers.
6. Alabama Crimson Tide (9-1)
Last Week: 38-7 (W) at Mississippi State
I believe Bama is better than UGA and maybe Oregon, but how would I know? They have only played one good team, LSU, and they lost to them. Don’t even start with that “close game” nonsense. North Carolina played a close game with Clemon. Those two teams aren’t even in the same stratosphere.
Alabama won the game but it feels like they lost the war. Went Tua Tagovailoa was laying on the ground it was evident that this injury was not like his ankle injury. This was extremely serious. It turns out he has a dislocated hip. The injury is similar to the one that ended Bo Jackson’s career.
There were at least three other Alabama players who were injured in the game and didn’t return. Good thing they schedule that “November Cupcake” game to get healthy before Iron Bowl.
It will be interesting to see how Bama plays with Mac Jones at quarterback. Can they keep up the momentum to be in the final top four?
5. Georgia Bulldogs (9-1)
Last Week: 21-14 (W) at Auburn
Ultimately, Georgia’s undoing will be the same thing that has plagued them every year under Kirby Smart. They are too conservative. They won’t be able to run their way to an SEC championship or CFB Playoff Championship. Jake Fromm will have to show is elite and not just a game manager. The best teams won’t allow them to run the football at the level they are accustomed too. And the best opponents will score enough points to make the Bulldogs throw the ball more than 30 times.
It is difficult to look past UGA’s loss to South Carolina. It is inexplicable. And the committee has a president for holding a top team out of the top four with an awful loss (see Ohio State 2018). I know this is a new committee, which clearly believes that two quality wins is greater than an ugly loss at home.
4. Oregon Ducks (9-1)
Last Week: 34-6 (W) vs Arizona
The bar for Oregon is set extremely high. They didn’t allow a touchdown and under 300 yards of total offense to a team averaging over 32 ppg and 400+ yards. When a team covers a 27.5 point spread without allowing a TD against a conference opponent and fans say you played “just ok” the team has arrived. The Ducks are still as physical and nasty as they were at the beginning of the season.
This team dominated Auburn only to have conservative play-calling keep the game within striking range which ultimately got them beat.
Oregon fans, players, and coaching staff know they are playing for style points even more than they are playing for wins. They need to be able to pass the media’s “eye test” to generate enough momentum to power through the SEC Alabama, or two-loss team to the playoff hype train.
3. Clemson Tigers (10-0)
Last Week: 52-3 (W) vs Wake Forest
Maybe Clemson is like Roy Jones. Remember he said, “They say I don’t fight nobody, I just make them look like nobody, y’all must have forgot”. Wake Forest was the #19 ranked team a week ago and Dabo’s crew blew the doors off them.
This season feels a lot like last year for Clemson. They started out the season slow, had a scare, then demolished everyone in their wake including Alabama. I’m hoping Clemson and Ohio State is not one of the semi-final matchups in the CFB Playoff. It would suck for the two teams I believe are the best to play each other first. Wouldn’t Ohio State vs Clemson be a helluva national championship game?
This game was over after Clemson scored 28 points int he first quarter. How is the ACC so bad?
Clemson doesn’t have any obvious opportunities for quality wins on the schedule, so it is crucial they finish the season undefeated.
2. Ohio State Buckeyes (10-0)
Last Week: 56-21 (W) at Rutgers
The Buckeyes look like the most complete team in college football. But, there was nothing to be learned in a game the 2nd string could have won. If they put together dominating performances against Penn State and Michigan over the next two weeks, they may creep back into the #1 spot. SEC fans will say no way, but sometimes fans won’t let common sense get in the way of their argument.
No matter who you can a fan of, can you honestly say you have seen a better team than O-H-I-O State? And they get Chase Young back from his suspension this week. If OSU puts together a dominating performance against Penn State, they may move back into the #1 spot of the College Football Top 10 Rankings As It Should Be.
1. LSU (10-0)
Last Week: 58-37 (W) at Ole Miss
Joe Burrow and company were like a hot knife through butter. A lot of people will tell you they aren’t concerned about their defense but I am. They aren’t Oklahoma bad, but they do give up a lot of points. I don’t want to hear about “garbage time” points. Those are the same players that have to go in when injuries happen or players get tired.
LSU has earned the #1 spot in the College Football Top 10 As It Should Be, but I don’t think they are the best team in the country. Ohio State is. It is impossible to deny the Tigers’ body of work up to this point.
Check back next Sunday morning for the College Football Top 10 Power Rankings Week 13.