The Top 5 Heading Into The Weekend

Rosalie Stanley
November 13, 2017

Alabama, the nation's top-ranked AP team, went to Starkville to face No. 18 Mississippi State and came away with a close win, 31-24. Now, with Alabama and Auburn meeting in the regular season, and the victor then meeting Georgia in the conference title game, figure the SEC for one playoff spot.

Depending on how this weekend goes the matchup for Southeastern Conference championship could be set, along with half the Big Ten, Atlantic Coast Conference and Pac-12 title game pairings. A loss would be crushing to unbeaten Miami's playoff hopes, but the Hurricanes could still win the ACC, finish 11-1 and likely be in the final four conversation.

A second SEC team: If that would be Alabama, after suffering its first loss to Georgia in the SEC Championship, that would be a real threat to the Buckeyes. They absolutely dominated 8-1 Notre Dame, shutting down the Irish's previously powerful rushing attack and forcing four more turnovers.

ACC - Clemson can wrap up a third straight trip to the title game as Atlantic Division champs by beating Florida State or if North Carolina State losses to Boston College. It would at least be a discussion. Washington could beat Washington State and USC and still not reach the playoff because of losses to Arizona State and Stanford.

Another ESPN measurement tool, the College Football Power Index, which is a prospective measure of a team's strength based on its projected performance going forward as opposed to past performance, now ranks Oklahoma No. 9 nationally.

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2 - Ohio State has yet to lose two straight games in five-plus seasons under coach Urban Meyer.

So now we're nearly back to the point of a week ago and the idea that the Buckeyes are in if they win out. I don't think we're quite there. So it can happen. They're susceptible, even more so than last year's team on defense, but are a tick better offensively when they put their heads down and run the football with Jalen Hurts and the best running back tandem in college football.

The Big Ten has earned enough respect that a two-loss champion from the league would reasonably win out over other two-loss options.

In what was perhaps one of the most chaotic and upset-filled college football weekends in recent memory, the College Football Playoff just got more interesting. It's definitely in play. For now. 1. AlabamaThe Crimson Tide treaded water early but the schedule has been better of late and they have taken care of business.

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