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College Football Power Rankings: Georgia reclaims No. 1 as TCU, Michigan slide into top four

College Football Power Rankings: Georgia reclaims No. 1 as TCU, Michigan slide into top four

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Wiping away the sweat, the rain and the implications from Week 10. That’s another way of saying a weekend in Georgia revealed many truths to your’s truly. One of them being this year’s national championship might be the Bulldogs’ to lose. (Hey, you try wearing a sports jacket in an annoying downpour.)

Georgia moves back into the No. 1 spot of the Power Rankings after a convincing win over Tennessee. Actually, it was more than that. It might have been a turning point for the Bulldogs in Kirby Smart’s seventh season.

There is something to be said for tackling in space. The Dawgs do it better than anyone. That explosive Volunteers offense was held to a mere 2.7 yards after catch. An offense known for throwing over the top simply could not.

Georgia’s convincing win didn’t ruin Tennessee’s College Football Playoff chances as the Vols drop only to No. 5.

With four weeks to go until Selection Sunday, there are only four undefeated teams remaining. There can be a maximum of three at the end of the season considering Ohio State and Michigan face one another during Rivalry Week.

While Tulane is the highest-ranked Group of Five team, don’t dismiss Liberty pushing for an at-large berth as an independent. The Flames moved to 8-1 have a legitimate chance of finishing around the top 12, which would be needed to secure a New Year’s Six bid in Liberty’s case. The Flames improved their resume by beating Arkansas on Saturday. UConn, Virginia Tech and New Mexico State remain. If they win out, that would make them 11-1 with two Power Five wins.

The Pac-12 continues to be deep. Oregon, USC and UCLA remain playoff contenders. Washington moved into the Power Rankings making it five from the Conference of Champions. Now, if the league could only produce an actual football champion.

Biggest Movers

Rk

Teams

 

Chg

Rcrd


1


Georgia

Sanford Stadium has never been louder. The stakes have never been higher. A defense of the national championship now seems possible. 2 9-0

2


Ohio State

Nasty weather and stubborn Wildcats combined for the Buckeyes worst effort of the season. Survive and advance to Indiana. 1 9-0

3


TCU

A playoff berth is within reach after a convincing win over Texas Tech. Texas awaits. 1 9-0

4


Michigan

After trailing Rutgers 17-14 at halftime, the Wolverines reeled off 38 straight points. With two more scores, Blake Corum is tied for the national lead with 16 rushing TDs. 1 9-0

5


Tennessee

Good ol’ Rocky Flop? A sixth straight loss to the Dawgs shouldn’t make the Vols question themselves. They’ve got five wins over ranked teams and a path to a CFP at-large berth. 3 8-1

6


LSU

This is why Brian Kelly came to LSU — to chase championships that weren’t within reach at Notre Dame. After a monster overtime win against Alabama, the Tigers are definitely in the CFP chase, even with two losses. 7 7-2

7


Oregon

Bo knows football and happiness. On his birthday, Bo Nix threw, ran and caught at least one touchdown in each category against Colorado. 1 8-1

8


USC

Let’s be clear: At times, the Trojans defense has a hard time stopping air, but USC remains the Pac-12’s best playoff candidate after outscoring California. 2 8-1

9


UCLA

This late in the season, we are reminded again that L.A. is the center of the Pac-12 universe. For now. There was no mercy for Arizona State. 2 8-1

10


Alabama

Defcon 5 in Tuscaloosa. The Crimson Tide are all but out of the SEC (and CFP) race three weeks before Thanksgiving. 3 7-2

11


Utah

Nine different players had at least one carry against Arizona. They combined for 306 yards rushing. With Oregon still left on the schedule, the Utes remain squarely in the Pac-12 race. 1 7-2

12


Ole Miss

Bye. The Rebels needed a breather. Judging by Alabama’s play lately, Ole Miss may get another one this week. 2 8-1

13


Clemson

Goodness, that was disappointing. Once again, DJU was yanked. Once again, the Tigers stalled. This time, it likely cost them a playoff berth after a three-touchdown beating at Notre Dame. “This was an ass-kicking, period,” Dabo Swinney said. 7 8-1

14


North Carolina

The Drake Maye show continues with two more TD passes (31 on the season). Tar Heels win a fifth straight road game for the first time since 1997. 2 8-1

15


Tulane

The coach’s name is Willie (Fritz). The mascot is Green (Wave). The New Year’s Six possibilities improved after Tulane handled Tulsa. 3 8-1

16


Penn State

Maybe this is just the Nittany Lions: The third-best team in the Big Ten East. The Nittany Lions handled Indiana. 3 7-2

17


UCF

The Knights get their first true road win of the season (at Memphis) to stay within striking distance of Tulane. 3 7-2

18


Liberty

There is nothing the Flames can do if Auburn comes calling for Hugh Freeze. The win over Arkansas may be the biggest in school history. 7 8-1

19


NC State

This is how good teams dig down. Without Devin Leary, the Wolfpack beat Wake Forest as a backup QB threw three touchdown passes. 2 7-2

20


Notre Dame

In the same season the Fighting Irish lost to Marshall and started 0-2, they are in line for a New Year’s Six bowl if they win out. NR 6-3

21


Texas

Up 31-10 at halftime, the Longhorns almost let another one slip away in the fourth quarter at Kansas State. Bijan Robinson stepped up 209 yards rushing to preserve the win and provide meaning to this week’s meeting with TCU. NR 6-3

22


Kansas State

It was something we hadn’t seen much of this season from Adrian Martinez: turnovers. He committed two (interception, fumble) that might have been the difference in Texas’ victory. 13 6-3

23


Illinois

There couldn’t have been more instability surrounding Michigan State. Don’t ask me how the Spartans snuck out of Champaign with an eight-point win. However, the Illini still control the Big Ten West. 8 7-2

24


Cincinnati

Bye. Looks like the season comes down to a Black Friday visit by Tulane in the finale. NR 7-2

25


Washington

Remember Jimmy Lake? Me neither. Kalin DeBoer is pulling off a West Coast turnaround after U-Dub beat Oregon State late. Michael Penix Jr. leads the country in passing. NR 7-2

Out: Oklahoma State, Oregon State, Maryland, Wake Forest





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