The third College Football Playoff rankings were released Tuesday and there was hardly any movement.
The top four remained the same with Louisiana State at No. 1 followed by Ohio State, Clemson and Georgia. The two teams outside looking in remained the same with Alabama at No. 5 and Oregon at No. 6.
Memphis is the highest-ranked team from the Group of Five at No. 18, jumping over Cincinnati. Three other teams from the Group of Five are ranked below the Tigers and Bearcats.
USC is the newcomer to the College Football Playoff rankings, coming in at No. 23. The Trojans are ranked for the first time since 2017. The Trojans won their last two games, on the road against Arizona State and California.
Auburn took the biggest tumble, falling three spots to No. 15, while Iowa took the biggest leap, up three spots to No. 17. The Hawkeyes took out previous No. 8-ranked Minnesota 23-19 while the Tigers fell to No. 4 Georgia 21-14.
Besides USC, Oregon and Utah are the other ranked Pac-12 teams. The Utes remain at No. 7.
This week’s rankings sets up a big showdown between No. 2 Ohio State and No. 8 Penn State. The winner will be the front-runner to claim the Big Ten East title and a berth in the Big Ten championship game.
The Big Ten Conference has the most teams ranked with six followed by the Southeastern Conference with five.
1. Louisiana State
2. Ohio State
8. Penn State
16. Notre Dame
20. Boise State
21. Oklahoma State
22. Iowa State
24. Appalachian State
25. Southern Methodist
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. 18 Memphis
Orange Bowl in Miami Gardens, Fla. (Dec. 30)
No. 10 Minnesota vs. Virginia Tech
Rose Bowl in Pasadena (Jan. 1, 2020)
No. 6 Oregon vs. No. 8 Penn State
Sugar Bowl in New Orleans (Jan. 1, 2020)
No. 5 Alabama vs. No. 9 Oklahoma
The fourth rankings will be released Nov. 26.