College Football Playoff rankings: LSU takes top spot; Minnesota makes big jump
The second College Football Playoff rankings were released Tuesday, and as expected, Louisiana State and Ohio State swapped places to take the top two spots.
The Tigers impressed the committee after defeating then No. 3 Alabama 46-41 on the road Saturday. Clemson and Georgia followed LSU and Ohio State to round out the top four.
Alabama this week is one of the teams outside looking in at No. 5. Oregon follows at No. 6.
Cincinnati once again was the highest-ranked team from the Group of Five, jumping three spots to No. 17. Four other teams from the Group of Five are ranked below the Bearcats.
The committee rewarded Minnesota after its 31-26 win over previously No. 4-ranked Penn State by moving it up nine spots to No. 8. The Golden Gophers are one of five undefeated teams remaining. The Nittany Lions fell five spots to No. 9.
Kansas State took the biggest tumble, falling eight spots to No. 24 after its 27-24 loss to previously unranked Texas.
As USC’s quarterback sat in the medical tent and his center was sidelined because of a strained calf, backups took the reins and helped the Trojans earn a win.
Besides Oregon, the only other ranked team from the Pac-12 is Utah at No. 7. The Utes play UCLA at the Rose Bowl on Saturday.
Despite the undefeated record, the committee thought Baylor’s strength of schedule and its close win over Texas Christian weren’t impressive enough to earn it a top-10 spot. The Bears are No. 13 but will have a chance to prove themselves when they host No. 10 Oklahoma on Saturday.
The Big Ten Conference has the most ranked teams with six followed by the Southeastern and Big 12 conferences with five.
2. Ohio State
9. Penn State
16. Notre Dame
21. Boise State
22. Oklahoma State
24. Kansas State
25. Appalachian State
If the season ended today, these would be the projected New Year’s Six Bowls:
Peach Bowl in Atlanta (Playoff semifinal, Dec. 28)
No. 1 LSU vs. No. 4 Georgia
Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz. (Playoff semifinal, Dec. 28)
No. 2 Ohio State vs. No. 3 Clemson
Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas (Dec. 28)
No. 7 Utah vs. No. 17 Cincinnati
Orange Bowl in Miami Gardens, Fla. (Dec. 30)
No. 9 Penn State vs. No. 11 Florida
Rose Bowl in Pasadena (Jan. 1, 2020)
No. 6 Oregon vs. No. 8 Minnesota
Sugar Bowl in New Orleans (Jan. 1, 2020)
No. 5 Alabama vs. No. 10 Oklahoma
The third rankings will be released Nov. 19.
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