The College Football Playoff Rankings Make Absolutely No Sense

Ryan Phillips
College Football Playoff Announces The College Football Playoff Selection Committee - News
College Football Playoff Announces The College Football Playoff Selection Committee - News / Tom Pennington/Getty Images
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The College Football Playoff selection committee released its latest batch of rankings Tuesday night and let me tell you, they don't make a lick of sense. Several teams in the top 10 moved, but not how most would have predicted. The logic for the rankings doesn't appear to apply equally to all the teams, with some getting punished for the same things others are rewarded for. It's a big damn mess.

The top five teams remained the same this week, as Alabama (10-0), Notre Dame (10-0), Clemson (9-1) and Ohio State (5-0) remained in the coveted top four spots, while Texas A&M (7-1) lurks at No. 5. But here's where things get weird. Iowa State (8-2) jumped to No. 6 after a week off and Florida only dropped from sixth to seventh after losing to a really bad, unranked LSU team at home. The Gators only dropped one spot after that embarrassment? How does that make any sense?

Georgia (8-2) beat a bad Missouri (5-4) team that is unranked and somehow jumped Cincinnati for eighth place. The Bearcats are undefeated at 8-0 and the committee apparently dinged them for not playing in a few weeks:

OK, but Ohio State has only played two games since November 7 and they've stayed in the top four? How does it make sense to punish Cincinnati? It feels like the committee just made up a rule so it could move the Bearcats down and elevate another SEC team into the mix.

Oklahoma (7-2), Indiana (6-1) and Coastal Carolina (11-0) all moved up one spot, while USC (5-0) jumped two to No. 13. The big loser was Miami (8-2) who fell eight spots to No. 18 after getting blown out by North Carolina. The Tar Heels (8-3) jumped two spots to No. 15.

The real craziness here is Florida. Taking a second loss on the season and doing it against an anemic LSU team at home should have sent the Gators tumbling down the rankings. Instead they dropped one spot. It feels like a move designed to protect No. 1 Alabama in case the Crimson Tide lose the SEC title game to the Gators. If that happens, the committee could easily justify keeping Nick Saban's bunch in the top four.

That move also reinforces the committee's clear desire to get two SEC teams in the final four by any means necessary. If Clemson loses to Notre Dame in the ACC Championship Game, you can bet the Tigers will fall out of the top four. Never mind that their two losses would have both come against the No. 2 team in the country.

The committee continues to overrate Georgia, a team with two losses that hasn't beaten anyone in the top 25, and Iowa State, which has two losses and moved to No. 6 despite and embarrassing early season home loss to Louisiana by 17 points. Those teams and Florida sit ahead of undefeated Cincinnati and an Indiana team whose only loss came by seven on the road against Ohio State.

Just to reiterate, none of this can be tracked logically, which is the biggest problem here. When the NCAA Tournament rolls around, the selection committee lays out its criteria clearly and once the field is set you can follow the logic of its picks. Within minutes you can tell how it valued things like true road wins, conference record, Tier 1 wins, home losses, etc. On the college football side it just feels like a group of guys throwing stuff at a wall to ensure the ACC and SEC get as many teams in as possible

The rankings are a mess and the CFP selection committee has some questions to answer.

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