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The Emery’s Top 15 College Football Teams Pre-Conference Championship Week

Manit Patel, Kade Cupp, and Austin Aldrich

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Michigan Football takes the field against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. The Wolverines went 10-2 (Michigan Photography)

Rivalry week. The best week in college football proved to be just that when major upsets took place around the country. With lots of new moving and shaking, and a new front-runner for the 4th College Football Playoff spot, we give you our rankings pre conference championship week.

(1) University of Alabama (-)

(12-0)

The consensus is that 1-2 will be Clemson and Alabama, not necessarily in that order, but we chose to go with Alabama due to their pure dominance. With a convincing 29-0 road win over LSU, who was ranked no. 3 at the time, the Crimson Tide must begin to prepare for the already locked in SEC conference championship game against the Georgia Bulldogs. We don’t see the Tide being thoroughly challenged until that game, and look for them to continue their dominance over the SEC, and clinch their 5th consecutive College Football Playoff berth.

(2) University of Clemson (-)

(12-0)

While no top team can go through a season without bumps, Clemson’s season has been bumpier than most. A freshman quarterback with no experience was chosen over a quarterback with proven playoff experience in one of the most confusing moves of the year. After a 27-23 come from behind scare against the Syracuse Orange, this Clemson team has looked downright dominant with the a victory coming against the Louisville Cardinals by a whopping score of 77-16. The Tigers have 2 wins against ranked teams, AP #16 NC State, and #17 Boston College, with another strong win coming against Texas A&M. Look for the Tigers to thoroughly dominate Pittsburgh, and all but clinch a berth in the College Football Playoff for their 4th consecutive College Football Playoff berth.

(3) University of Notre Dame (+1)

(12-0)

Our number 3 team is the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. They have 1 quality win over Number-3 Michigan but have played many close games against mediocre teams, including games within 10 points against Ball State, Vanderbilt, Pittsburgh, and Northwestern, and USC. Should Clemson and Alabama win, and the rankings stay the same for the most part, look for Notre Dame to give Clemson a fight in the Playoff game.

(4) University of Georgia (+2)

(11-1)

comes in at number 6 because they are an all-around team that can threaten Alabama’s SEC crown, and with the recent resurgence of the traditionally high-powered run game we’ve seen from Georgia teams past.

(5) University of Oklahoma (-)

(11-1)

is our number 5 ranked team because they have performed up to par all season save for a singular slip up against Texas in the Red River Rivalry game. They have strong wins over many good teams like West Virginia and Iowa State. With their high octane offense, in our opinion they would give Alabama some trouble, but not as much as teams like Georgia.

(6) The Ohio State (+1)

(11-1)

is at number 6,  we like what we saw from them at the beginning of the season, and how the defense is adjusting after the loss of Nick Bosa who wanted to put a halt on his season in order to avoid injury and prepare for the NFL draft in which he is projected by many to go number 1 overall. Ohio State’s offense looks dangerous with Dwyane Haskins leading the charge. With the 62-39 shellacking of Michigan, Ohio State firmly supplanted themself in the discussion for a spot in the playoff.

(6) University of Central Florida (+4)

(12-0)

UCF is ranked 1o because of their complete dominance over their opponents, they do have a very weak strength of schedule, but with recent wins over a ranked Cincinnati team, and Pittsburgh, they look good, and with 25 straight wins, they are no doubt the hottest team in the country. Should a little bit of chaos happen, with Georgia, Oklahoma, and Ohio State losing, the Golden Knights could also argue they deserve a spot in the playoff.

 

(8) University of Michigan (-4)

(10-2)

Our number 3 team may come as a bit of a shock, but we’re going to go with 1-loss Michigan here, due to their quality wins. After beating Wisconsin and Penn State by 50 combined points, and going through a complete offensive transformation after the opening-weekend loss to Notre Dame, and a good Ohio State team, Michigan’s defense is still a top-5 defense, and their offense can play with some of the best, don’t count them out come bowl season.

(9) University of  Texas (+3)

(9-3)

We have Texas ranked 12th because they beat playoff contender #6 Oklahoma, and kept it to a 1 point loss to slightly less of one but still a playoff contender West Virginia. Texas would also need some chaos to occur in order to make the Playoff, if Georgia and Ohio State lose, and Texas wins, they too could make a logical argument for a Playoff spot.

(10) University of Washington (UR)

(9-3)

We have the Huskies ranked number 10 because they are a good team, with wins over 3 ranked teams, including one in the Apple Cup over AP #8 Washington State.

(11) University of Florida (+2)

(8-3)

(12) Pennsylvania State University(UR)

(9-3)

We have Penn State ranked #12 because they have wins over Pittsburgh, Iowa, and Wisconsin and are 9-3 with a tough 1 point loss to Ohio State

(13) Louisiana State University (-4)

(9-3)

LSU is number 13 because they have 3 quality wins, and an outrageously good defense, they have three losses, one to top 15th ranked Florida, and 1st ranked Alabama, and one to a ranked Texas A&M team. They also have a very tough strength of schedule.

(14) University of Utah (UR)

(9-3)

Utah is 14 because they have good wins over Stanford and Oregon, and a tight loss with a ranked Washington State team.

 

(15) West Virginia University (-7)

(8-3)

is number 15 because they have a strong wins over 2 ranked teams, and have one of the best offenses in the nation. During  showdown at the end of the year with Oklahoma, West Virginia lost by only 3 points.

 

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