Let the Debate Begin: the First College Football Playoff Rankings Are Here

college football playoff rankings mississippi state no 1

The asinine BCS is no more. However, that doesn’t mean we won’t have anything to debate. The first College Football Playoff rankings are here, and they do not mirror the AP Top 25. So you can bet a great many people are totally enraged.

“It was extremely difficult, more difficult than any of us had expected having gone through our mock selections before,” explained Arkansas AD and CFP committee chair Jeff Long. “We don’t analyze it by conference. We look at those teams and evaluate the teams they played and the success they had, or the failures they had.”

To be sure, three of the top four teams of the CFP rankings are the same as the AP Top 25. In both, Mississippi State and Florida State are #1 and #2 respectively. However, AP #4 Auburn is #3 in the CFP, and AP #3 Alabama was bumped out of the top four to #6. Meanwhile, AP #7 Ole Miss takes the #4 spot in the CFP rankings, and Oregon is #5 is both the AP and the CFP rankings.

Here are the AP top ten and the CFP top ten side-by-side:

college football playoff rankings

Obviously, Alabama fans will be indignant at this slight to their esteemed program, but it actually makes all kinds of sense. Ole Miss may have lost to LSU last weekend, but they did beat Alabama. Why should a one-loss team who beat Alabama be ranked lower than Alabama? Now, if Alabama beats LSU this weekend, that might change things. But for now, Ole Miss is ahead.

If you really want to complain about something, complain about the fact that three of the top four are from the SEC West. Why not throw the Pac 12 a bone and put one-loss Oregon in there?

That being said, Mississippi State has yet to play Alabama and Ole Miss, who plays Auburn this weekend, who also has yet to play Georgia and Alabama. So unless FSU, Oregon, TCU, and Michigan State all falter down the stretch, it’s hard to see how three teams from the SEC West will make the first ever College Football Playoff.

But you never know.

Hat Tip – [ESPN]

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