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14 in College Football Playoff rankings

14 in College Football Playoff rankings

The rankings were released early Tuesday evening. Notre Dame has blown out USC and NC State the past two weeks. That would leave room for the victor of a Clemson-Miami title game to get into the top four. Wake Forest is 5-3 and Navy is 5-2.

There will always be a debate on whether or not the committee makes the right choice, but it really is hard to argue with the initial rankings. Since the late-September loss, the Cowboys have won four straight games, including three victories in which they scored at least 41 points. The best thing going for Penn State is that they still have arguably the best running back in the nation on their side in Saquon Barkley. That game, which would be played in Atlanta, is set for December 2.

Notre Dame is not totally safe though. Those victories and the close loss to Georgia made the Irish the highest ranked among one-loss teams. The Big Ten could match Ohio State with one loss and Wisconsin with none.

Wisconsin still has MI and another chance against a Big Ten East powerhouse if it gets back to Indianapolis. The Wolverines are No. 38 in this week's Sagarin Ratings, but several ranked teams had higher strength-of-schedule ratings, including No. 24 Michigan State (16th), No. 20 North Carolina State (26th), No. 17 USC (7th) and No. 15 Iowa State (22nd).

Notre Dame, which lost at home by one to the Bulldogs in Week 2 is at No. 3.

IT MIGHT NOT BE JUST THE PAC-12 IN TROUBLE: The top four includes teams from only two of Power Five conferences, and if Georgia, Alabama and Notre Dame keep winning it very well could stay that way.

In 2015 the Irish were #4 in the CFP rankings before lackluster showings against Wake Forest and Boston College essentially knocked the Irish out of contention long before Stanford officially kicked them out of the race as time expired in Palo Alto Thanksgiving weekend.

At the top are two unbeaten SEC teams in Georgia and Alabama.

The Bulldogs are a flawless 8-0 and coming off a convincing win over Florida on the road as this poll will eventually set the playoffs for college football on New Year's Eve and then eight days later with the title game in Atlanta. LSU's win over Syracuse is better than anything MSU has done in the non-conference and LSU's win over Auburn is better than any win MSU has, but that's about the only two respectable wins LSU has.

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