Mississippi State

The only rankings that really matter, those revealed by the College Football Playoff committee, have been posted for the first time this season, keeping Mississippi State and Florida State as the top two teams in the nations, followed by Auburn and Ole Miss to complete the picture of the Final Four.

Beyond the usual SEC West dominance? Oregon come in fifth, followed by Alabama and a very surprising TCU, while Michigan State, Kansas State and Notre Dame complete the picture of the top 10.

1Mississippi State7-0
2Florida State7-0
3Auburn6-1
4Ole Miss7-1
5Oregon7-1
6Alabama7-1
7TCU6-1
8Michigan State7-1
9Kansas State6-1
10Notre Dame6-1
11Georgia6-1
12Arizona6-1
13Baylor6-1
14Arizona State6-1
15Nebraska7-1
16Ohio State6-1
17Utah6-1
18Oklahoma5-2
19LSU7-2
20West Virginia6-2
21Clemson6-2
22UCLA6-2
23East Carolina6-1
24Duke6-1
25Louisville6-2

Surprising names in the top 25? Louisville  in the 25th position, although it’s hard to believe that the Cardinals, maybe the last difficult test standing in the way of Florida State of going through the ACC undefeated and rarely tested, have an actual shot of putting themselves in the top 20 or anywhere near a playoff spot. The only rational choice for an ACC team making the playoffs are Florida State. If they’re undefeated, they won’t be budged. One or more losses? Depends on how the other conferences are won.

From now on this will be a weekly thing. It doesn’t come with the numbers and explanations we got when the BCS standings were posted, but it’s the determining factor nonetheless, and once again it puts three SEC West teams in the top 4.

As with the other ranking systems, it’s hard to believe the trio which includes the one loss Ole Miss and one loss Auburn actually ends up being ranked in the same place when the season ends. As we’ve said more than once, an SEC West team winning the conference probably means just one team from the best conference in College Football making the playoffs, and there’s nothing wrong with that.