Ranking the Power 5 Football Conferences after week 9 with Playoff Analysis.


Is the last month of the season going to be fun or what?

Let me point out on my philosophy on these rankings – you’re most recent  OOC results count a lot, and you’ll see me reference that throughout the season.

We’ll give each conference a relative strength value 1-10.

Let me explain my relative rankings

0-5 : Conference lacks depth no elite teams

6-7: Conference lacks depth, and there are 1-2 elite teams, and 1-2 quality teams

7-8: At least 2 elite teams, and at least 2 quality teams.

8-9: 3 elite teams, and at least 2 quality teams

9-10: 1/2 of conference is elite and/or quality teams.

1) Big 12 – 7.15

When 40% of your conference is ranked in the top 20, with each still contention for a playoff spot, you slide up to number 1 in the conferences. The Big 12 still lacks any significant OOC wins, but I think Baylor, TCU, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State are all high quality teams.

Finally next week the Big 12 heavy weights will start playing each when TCU visits Oklahoma State.

Playoff Contenders

TCU, Baylor

In the Playoff Picture

Oklahoma State, Oklahoma

2) SEC – 7.10

I can’t keep the SEC number 1 after a 2nd SEC team lost to another AAC team. This time Vanderbilt got routed by Houston. Ole Miss continue to win in the SEC which is also a black eye on the conference. They still have an ugly loss to Memphis on their resume.

The SEC isn’t very deep. LSU looks good, but Alabama has a defeat and hands that Ole Miss team we talked about. Florida is pretty good too, but overall the SEC isn’t having the strongest year.

Next week LSU and Alabama play each other. If LSU keeps winning they’ll make the playoffs. Alabama needs a win or their playoff hopes are history.

Playoff Contenders 


In the Playoff Picture

Alabama, Florida

3) Pac 12 – 7.05

The rest of the country isn’t helping the Pac 12. They are still on the outside looking in on the playoffs. Stanford narrowly avoided a huge upset to Washington State.

Next week Stanford face Colorado, and they should have no problem there. Utah heads to Washington. Both  are must win games for each.

Playoff Contenders


In the Playoff Picture

Stanford, Utah

3) Big 10 – 7.0

The Big 10 had a quiet week. Iowa took care of Maryland to stay on the fringes of the playoff race. Pittsburgh, their best win, lost to UNC and that doesn’t help Iowa’s resume.

Ohio State and Michigan State are very good. Iowa is still undefeated, and Wisconsin and Michigan are’t bad, but the bottom of the conference is awful.

Next week Ohio State plays Minnesota, Michigan State plays at reeling Nebraska, and Iowa faces Indiana.

Playoff Contenders  

Ohio State

In the Playoff Picture

Michigan State, Iowa

5) ACC – 6.9

Miami beating Duke puts a dent in the ACC’s depth. Florida State has the ugly loss to Georgia Tech. The Jackets are the worst team in the Coastal Division. Clemson had a little early trouble with NC State, but still scored 56 points.

UNC looks like the Coastal’s best team after winning at Pittsburgh. They face Duke next week in a game that probably will decide the Coastal Division.

Notre Dame visits Pittsburgh, and if the Panthers win I’d move the ACC out of last place in the conference standings. The ACC’s game of the year Clemson hosts FSU. If Clemson wins, I love their chances to make the playoffs. FSU has a lot of work to get back in contention even with a win.

Playoff Contenders


In the Playoff Picture


The Rest 

Notre Dame just got by a good Temple to to stay in the playoff discussion. Memphis and Houston remain undefeated. I would say the AAC has proven itself, and if their champion goes undefeated, they should be in the playoff over any 1+ loss power champion. It won’t happen but it should.

Playoff Contenders 


In the Playoff Picture

Notre Dame

My Current Playoff Teams

As my personal criticism of the playoff committee, I don’t think the top 4 seeds order should be released until the final rankings. The playoff committee’s inconsistent and ever changing criteria is causing unnecessary frustration and confusion. It’s one of the improvement points I’d have for them.

If I had a vote this is who I would put in the playoff right now.

In –   LSU | TCU | Clemson | Ohio State

Just Missed – 5) Alabama  6) Notre Dame  7) Baylor  8) Stanford

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