Georgia overtook Ohio State for the No. 1 spot in the newest College Football Playoff rankings released Tuesday night, after back-to-back wins over top 25 opponents.
The Bulldogs are coming off victories over No. 13 Ole Miss (52-17) this past weekend and No. 9 Missouri (30-21) on Nov. 4, bolstering a schedule that had been lacking quality wins. They will have an opportunity to enhance their strength of schedule Saturday when they face No. 18 Tennessee in Knoxville.
The Buckeyes dropped to No. 2, switching spots with Georgia. They still have two top-25 victories — against Notre Dame and Penn State — enough to keep them ahead of rival Michigan.
“[Georgia] showed their dominance on offense and on defense against a really strong Mississippi offense,” CFP chair Boo Corrigan said on ESPN’s rankings release show Tuesday night. “So in looking at it and the résumé and everything combined, we thought Georgia was the No. 1 team this week.”
The Wolverines stayed at No. 3 after their first top-25 win of the season, 24-15 over Penn State; the Nittany Lions dropped two spots to No. 12.
Florida State remained at No. 4 after a hard-fought win over rival Miami. There was some thought Washington might move ahead of the Seminoles because it has three top-25 victories following Saturday’s 35-28 triumph over No. 22 Utah, compared to one for the Seminoles (a Week 1 victory over No. 15 LSU). But the Huskies remained at No. 5.
“Florida State, really good offensively, have been really good defensively,” Corrigan said. “Don’t undersell the Miami-Florida State rivalry as well and that’s been going on for years. … We thought Florida State was the dominate team [in the game].”
There was no change in the next three spots: Oregon is No. 6, Texas is No. 7 and Alabama is No. 8. Missouri moved up five spots to No. 9 after a dominant 36-7 victory over the Vols, and Louisville rounded out the top 10. The Cardinals play at Miami on Saturday, and a win clinches a spot in the ACC championship game against Florida State.
Iowa was the biggest mover, going from No. 22 to No. 16 this week. The Hawkeyes have zero top-25 wins, the statistically worst offense in college football and yet are 8-2. A win on Saturday over Illinois will clinch the Big Ten West Division title and a spot in the conference championship game.
Who Iowa plays remains to be seen.
It hardly matters at this point whether Ohio State or Michigan is ranked higher, since the two teams will play in Ann Arbor on Nov. 25. But before their rivalry game, Ohio State hosts Minnesota on Saturday, and Michigan plays at Maryland. As of now, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is suspended for both games, but he has an injunction hearing set for Friday to plead his case to get the suspension lifted.
He said at his news conference earlier this week that he planned to speak at the hearing.
“I’m just looking forward to that opportunity — due process,” Harbaugh said. “I’m not looking for special treatment, not looking for a popularity contest, just looking for the merit of what the case is.”
Tulane remained the only Group of 5 team ranked this week, at No. 24. No new teams entered the rankings.