As I’m sure you know by now, the Ohio State football team is the new number-one team in the country. The first College Football Playoff rankings were released last night with the Buckeyes on top. They were followed by Georgia, Michigan, Florida State, and Washington.
So we know that the Buckeyes are number one. What else did we learn from the committee’s choices? What do these rankings tell us about the way that the committee will be approaching this year’s rankings? To start, resumé matters a lot compared to the eye test.
The reason why the Ohio State football team is the top-ranked team is because of their resumé. They have wins at Notre Dame and home against Penn State, both top-15 teams. No other team has come close to accumulating wins as good as those two.
Ohio State didn’t look particularly dominant on offense in either one of those wins either. The eye test wasn’t exactly there. Yet, they won the games. That’s all that matters in the eyes of the committee. It’s the same reason why Washington is over Oregon, besides the head-to-head win.
We also learned that the committee doesn’t care that Michigan may have cheated to get some of their wins. During his interview, committee chair Boo Corrigan mentioned that the committee sees that as an NCAA issue and not a committee issue. They will keep ranking Michigan highly as long as they are winning and are eligible.
Finally, we learned that the Ohio State Buckeyes have a shot to make the CFP even if they lose to TTUN again. Being number one right now gives them a cushion that no one else has. If two of the other undefeated teams falter, they could be in a position to be the best one-loss team.
That’s the value of having a good non-conference schedule. That win at Notre Dame gives them this cushion. Of course, it’s not something they want to have to use. They want to beat Michigan and not leave any doubt in the committee’s mind that they are one of the best four teams in the country.