Well, that didn’t take long.
One week after Michigan football (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) found itself on the outside looking in for this year’s initial College Football Playoff rankings, the Wolverines are on the right side of the bubble this time, now ranked No. 3 by the committee.
Michigan is also No. 3 in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll and AP poll after Saturday’s 52-17 win at Rutgers. UM hosts Nebraska this Saturday.
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Georgia (9-0, 6-0 SEC) is the new No. 1, after knocking off previously top-ranked Tennessee, Ohio State (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) holds steady at No. 2. TCU (9-0, 6-0 Big 12) moves up three spots after last weekend’s upsets to No. 4. Tennessee (8-1, 4-1 SEC) falls to No. 5 after its road loss to the Bulldogs.
Oregon (8-1, 6-0 Pac 12), whose only loss is to Georgia, moves up to No. 6. LSU (7-2, 5-1 SEC) just knocked off Alabama at home in OT and makes a significant jump from ninth to seventh. USC (8-1, 5-1 Pac 12) survived a scare vs. California and is ranked eighth, followed by the Crimson Tide (7-2, 5-2 SEC) ninth.
Clemson (8-1, 6-0 SEC), which suffered its first loss of the season Saturday to Notre Dame, takes a big drop from No. 4 to 10.
USC (8-1, 5-1 Pac 12) survived a scare vs. California and is ranked eighth, followed by the Crimson Tide (7-2, 5-2 SEC) ninth.
this was the second time the 13-person committee — led by Boo Corrigan, the CFP selection committee chair and NC State athletic director — met in Grapevine, Texas, to share the standings; the sixth and final ranking will come Dec. 4 after conference championship weekend.
On Monday, Jim Harbaugh admitted he is more aware of what other top teams in the country are doing given that stakes are getting higher by the week.
“Yeah, maybe some,” he said. “Mostly (focused) on what we’re doing.”
The Wolverines were No. 6 at this time last season and the initial ranking of No. 5 this season was a bit of surprise given their average margin of victory of 30 points per game. That only took a step forward this week, when the Wolverines put together perhaps their best second half of the season (an area in which they’ve already been stellar) and outscored Rutgers, 38-0, to cruise to a 52-17 road victory.
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Players say they’re well aware of what’s going on.
“You can’t help but to notice it, people are posting it all over the place,” linebacker Michael Barrett said Monday. “I don’t make it too much of a deal to me, I try to keep the guys level where we’re at. The biggest thing to do right now is keep winning, keep playing our ball and if we keep going forward everything will play out.”
Last year, Michigan didn’t crack the top four until after the win over Ohio State catapulted the Wolverines from No. 5 to No. 2. UM was No. 2 entering last year’s national semifinal loss to Georgia in the Orange Bowl.
Next up: Cornhuskers
Matchup: no. 3 Michigan (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) vs. Nebraska (3-6, 2-4).
Kickoff: 3:30 pm Saturday; Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
TV/radio: A B C; WXYT-FM (97.1), WTKA-AM (1050).
Line: Wolverines by 29.
College Football Playoff Committee Top 25
- Georgia (9-0)
- Ohio State (9-0)
- Michigan (9-0)
- TCU (9-0)
- Tennessee (8-1)
- Oregon (8-1)
- LSU (7-2)
- USC (8-1)
- Alabama (7-2)
- Clemson (8-1)
- Mississippi (8-1)
- UCLA (8-1)
- Utah (7-2)
- Penn State (7-2)
- North Carolina (8-1)
- NC State (7-2)
- Tulane (8-1)
- Texas (6-3)
- Kansas State (6-3)
- Notre Dame (6-3)
- Illinois (7-2)
- Central Florida (7-2)
- Florida State (6-3)
- Kentucky (6-3)
- Washington (7-2)