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Sep
10
2017

Ranking the Power 5 Football Conferences after Week 2 with Playoff Analysis

While the playoff committee doesn’t rank the power 5 conference, there is no way conference strength – which means OOC results doesnt figure in to a committee members thought process.

Let me point out on my philosophy on these rankings – your 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) Pac 12 – 7.8

I can’t think of the last time, I’ve had the  5 conferences this closely compacted. Trying to separate them is very difficult. I’m still going with the Pac 12 as number 1 for the moment. Oregon beat Nebraska, and Washington St. came back to beat Boise St.

I give the Pac 12 the edge, because in either poll you look nearly half their league is ranked, but it isn’t all good news. Arizona lost to Houston, Arizona St. lost to San Diego St., and Oregon State got blown out my Minnesota.

Next week USC plays Texas and California plays Ole Miss. With the Pac 12 and SEC so close that’s a big game.

Playoff Contenders

USC, Washington

In the Playoff Picture

Utah, Washington State

2) SEC – 7.7

Georgia picked up a decent win at Notre Dame, but I can’t push the SEC over the Pac 12. Arkansas was listless in a loss at home to TCU, and after the first 1st qtr you weren’t sure if Auburn could cross mid-field against Clemson. The SEC’s bottom half has avoided the uglier losses that some of the other conferences have had, and that counts for something.

Next week Kansas St. plays Vanderbilt, California plays Ole Miss and Purdue plays Missouri.

Playoff Contenders 

Alabama, LSU

In the Playoff Picture

Georgia

3) ACC – 7.4

The ACC got a big marquee win when Clemson knocked off Auburn. Duke also picked up a good win over Northwestern. As expected Virginia lost to Indiana, and Pitt went down to Penn State. The real surprise of the weekend was Middle Tennessee State beating Syracuse.

Next week Pittsburgh likely add to another OOC powers record when they face Oklahoma State. Duke also plays Baylor.

Playoff Contenders

Clemson

In the Playoff Picture

Miami, Virginia Tech, Louisville, Florida State

3) Big 10 – 7.3

When your supposed best team gets whacked at home, that’s going to hurt. Ohio State gout pounded 31-16 by Oklahoma in Columbus. That’s not a good look. Northwestern was destroyed at Duke, and Nebraska lost to Oregon. Rutgers had embarrassing loss to Eastern Michigan. The Big 10 did pick up wins against some lower division ACC teams with Indiana beating Virginia, and Penn State beating Pittsburgh. Minnesota also picked up a win against a terrible Oregon State team. Iowa beat Iowa State.

At the moment the Big 10 wouldn’t have a team in the playoffs.

Purdue vs Missouri is the notable OOC game next week, so it will be hard for the Big 10 to impress anyone next week.

Playoff Contenders  

NONE

In the Playoff Picture

Penn State, Wisconsin, Michigan

5) Big 12 – 7.1

The Big 12 had one of their best weekends in years, and we noticed. The Oklahoma win at Ohio State is the biggest Big 12 win in recent memory. TCU hammering Arkansas at Arkansas was also impressive. The top half the Big 12 can match up with any conference.

The bottom half on the hand… Iowa State lost to Iowa, and Baylor went down to UTSA and Kansas lost to Central Michigan. Those might be two of the worst teams in College Football.

The Big 12 has a chance to overtake the Big 10 next week. Oklahoma State plays Pittsburgh, Texas plays USC, Texas Tech plays Arizona State, Kansas State vs Vanderbilt, and Baylor plays Duke. If the Big 12 goes 3-2, I may consider moving them up.

Playoff Contenders

Oklahoma

In the Playoff Picture

Oklahoma State, Kansas State, TCU

The Rest 

Notre Dame blew a good chance to beat UGA, and I don’t we will hear from them again this year in regards to the playoffs.

Playoff Contenders 

NONE

In the Playoff Picture

NONE

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 –   Oklahoma | Alabama | Clemson | USC

Just Missed – 5) Washington  6) Penn State 7) LSU 8) Oklahoma State

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