CFB Playoff predictions: Who are the top 4 entering championship week?

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It’s time for Week 5 of the College Football Playoff rankings, which come out Tuesday night after some big-time upsets this weekend. Who will be in the top four and what order will they be in as we prepare for championship week?

The Athletic’s college football writers make their case for who the top four should be this week.

Staff votes for CFP rankings

Team First Second Third Fourth







And how did we come to those conclusions?

Nicole Auerbach: I imagine most of my colleagues have a very similar-looking top four (Georgia, Michigan, TCU and USC), and it’s pretty self-explanatory. I think you could argue about switching Nos. 1 and 2, and you could argue about switching Nos. 3 and 4 if USC avenges its only loss in the Pac-12 title game. But otherwise, this is potentially a very clean and easy proposition for the selection committee.

Andy Bitter: This is clearing up nicely. Georgia’s still far and away the top team, but Michigan settled the Big Ten debate with a resounding win against Ohio State. TCU might be in even if it loses the Big 12 title game. And USC controls its path to the Playoff with the Pac-12 championship game.

Christian Caple: Ohio State’s three-score loss at Michigan (and LSU’s stunning defeat to Texas A&M) renders this the logical top four (Georgia, Michigan, TCU and USC). Only question now is whether any of them will lose in their conference title games.

Scott Dochterman: Michigan owns two of the nation’s most impressive wins, over Ohio State and Penn State by different means. It almost seems like the College Football Playoff field is set and these four (Michigan, Georgia, TCU and USC) would qualify even with a loss in this week’s conference championship games.

Seth Emerson: The top two could easily be flipped because Michigan now has the most impressive win of the season. But Georgia’s resume, even with Oregon and Tennessee slipping, still has wins over three more teams that could be ranked, all on the road: South Carolina, Mississippi State and Kentucky. As for Nos. 3 and 4, everything is being tied up in a neat bow for the committee, providing TCU and USC don’t ruin things this weekend.

Matt Fortuna: No drama here, as the three unbeatens and the most impressive one-loss team make up this week’s field of four. With the way things are set up this week, each of the top three (Georgia, Michigan and TCU) probably could get into the Playoff with a loss, while USC has a pretty cut-and-dried path to the CFP. If the Trojans lose, however, expect the politicking among Ohio State, Alabama and Tennessee to be at an all-time high, creating chaos like we have never seen before in the CFP era.

Sam Khan Jr.: Georgia is the clear No. 1, and USC is the clear No. 4. Michigan’s win over Ohio State boosted its strength of schedule to be comparable to TCU. The Wolverines’ FBS opponents are a combined 72-73, TCU’s are 66-66. Michigan has the two best wins over Ohio State and Penn State,…

Read More: CFB Playoff predictions: Who are the top 4 entering championship week? 2022-11-28 09:34:05

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