Which is better than most, which are either completely biased, or dumb, or both.
The Tier 1 schools
In an ideal world, this would be the 4 playoff teams. There hasn’t been enough separation this season, however. So I am going to include the teams that I would have in the playoffs right now, and the ones that I think will be in the playoffs at years end.
In right now, Utah. They have 2 wins against teams that will be ranked at the end of the season.
Notre Dame. They look more athletic than they have in decades. The committee takes injuries into account, and ND has been hammered by them.
Michigan State would make the list because of the Oregon win, and I have watched them several times now. The scores don’t show how dominating this team can be. When their emotions are up, they are the best team I have watched this season.
Ole’ Miss would get a spot without a doubt, and that’s why I needed to include a few teams I think will be in the playoffs in this tier. I give Michigan a better chance to make the playoffs than Ole’ Miss. And yes, I am being serious. And no, I don’t have Michigan in this tier. Or the next.
Ohio State, based more on last year than this. I could tell you NIU won 57 games in the previous 5 years, and that Virginia Tech probably would have beaten ECU with Brewer, but that isn’t really the point. OSU’s defense is the real deal this season, and their offense is loaded with potential. In the old poll system, I would still have Ohio State number 1.
Baylor is here because I think they will win the Big 12 this year, and the Big 12 has a really good shot at a spot this season.
The last spot was a tough call for me. There is a 99.9999% chance the SEC winner gets into the playoffs. I think the SEC winner will be either Georgia or Alabama. I went with Georgia because they are undefeated, and decided to keep the top tier undefeated at this point.
Tier Two Schools
I debated about putting LSU in here, and decided to keep them out. Their offense is too one dimensional, and I am not sold on their defense just yet. I am putting UCLA in here, but only because everyone else seems to think they are good. They are one of the few top 25 teams I haven’t watched this season.
Bama is still a title contender. Every other article out there is about the end of their dynasty. I see a team that still needs to fix their secondary(what really cost them the title last season) and their QB situation. Saban and company are more than capable of doing that.
I really don’t want to put any team in the 10th spot, so I wont. The next tier will have 9 spots instead of 8.
Tier Three School
TCU is here. “How can you have TCU this low?”, many will scream. (if many ever actually read this). They gave up 89 points in 2 games against unranked teams. I get Tech will probably be ranked soon enough. I also get there are 59 teams that haven’t given up 89 points all season. It’s still early, but I am going to keep TCU out of any kind of playoff discussion with those problems on defense.
LSU is probably the best almost contender out there. Lenard is a freaking beast. The rest of the team, well, the jury is still out. The defense looks talented, but takes plays off. Shocking for a Les Miles defense, I know. The offense is completely one dimensional. Shocking for a Les Miles offense, I know. The thing about the grass eating Les Miles is, his system works. Under Miles, LSU is tied for 3 for most years finishing the season ranked, 4th in top 10s and 6th in top 5s. Oh, and he has a title. The QB shows promise. He made some really big throws against Syracuse. We’ll see what the season holds. They would be, by far, the least shocking of this tier to climb into the contender ranks.
You know who everyone was talking about all off season? Michigan. Then they lost to Utah and no one is really talking about them. Well, that sloppy loss to Utah is looking better and better. And even though they aren’t putting up 80 points, they are completely dominating their opponents. This Michigan squad is looking like the real deal. I fully expect them to be title contenders next season. If you look at their schedule, this season still isn’t out of the picture. They get the number 1 and number 2 team in the country at home. They also get a plucky Northwestern team to boost their rankings. Stranger things have happened, like Ohio State losing to Tech at home last season and winning it all.
I watched FSU this year and wasn’t impressed. I haven’t seen Clemson, the only other top 20 team I haven’t watched this season to go along with UCLA, but I have seen Louisville several times, and beating them by 3 isn’t good. It’s early, and both are undefeated and were pretty good the last few years. They might climb into the rank of title contenders, but I can’t put either of them there yet.
Duke and Stanford are impressive wins. But I am going to need to see more than that before I consider Northwestern a contender. A close win against Ball State after those wins isn’t enough for me to say they aren’t. They could be a Cinderella story of all time this season. But probably not.
Oklahoma is quietly climbing the rankings. A win against WVU could be the turning point in making them contenders again.
Stanford lost a game early to a hard nosed Northwestern team that it may have overestimated. USC lost a game early to a hard nosed Stanford team that it may have overestimated. Both are still very good teams that could be the Pac 12 champ, which would mean a likely playoff birth.
That’s my new fangled rankings for week four of the 2015 season. I am not bothering with the lower tier just yet, because that’s a lot of work. And I haven’t seen enough of all the teams yet to make an educated guess.