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A Western Michigan fan’s guide to the College Football Playoff rankings

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Because you’ll need help with rankings this awful.

Alex Alvarado

The College Football Playoff rankings came out Tuesday night and, shock of shocks, it was as horrible as you would’ve expected with the Western Michigan Broncos sitting at #21 as one of two unbeaten teams in the FBS. Let’s go through these rankings and see if we can make any sense out of them.

#25 Texas A&M (7-3)

The good news for the Aggies is that they might not actually fire their head coach this season, but the bad news is they lost Trevor Knight for the season and they have three conference losses, which is kind of a big deal.

#24 Stanford (7-3)

Another team with three league losses (all in blowout fashion), the Cardinal’s lone good win is against a USC team the was coming off of a major beatdown from Alabama. Stanford looks good against the bad teams though, and the band is still awesome.

#23 Florida (7-2)

How bad have the Gators been on offense this season? They’ve had a Purdue transfer at QB play when Luke Del Rio got injured and haven’t looked right all year. With a game at LSU this week, Florida’s stint in the rankings will be incredibly short-lived.

#22 Washington State (8-2)

The Fighting Mike Leaches are undefeated in Pac-12 play, but have a pair of bad losses against Eastern Washington (!!!) and Boise State. Without a dominant team in the league this season, it’s hard to see the Cougs doing much of anything if they do beat Washington in the Apple Cup.

#21 Western Michigan (10-0)

The brilliant Broncos have laid waste to every team in its path this season, and that’s likely not going to change. Also, WMU has more B1G wins than Purdue, Michigan State, and Rutgers; rare to see a team be the best team in two West divisions.

#20 Boise State (9-1)

WMU got passed over for a team who’s name is better than its game, as the Blue Broncos aren’t in control of their own destiny but are still getting props for a game that happened nearly a decade ago. Boise hasn’t done anything to deserve this ranking other than reside in the awful Mountain West.

#19 Tennessee (7-3)

The wheels are falling off of the Tennessee hype train as the team has a slew of injuries, the star running back is transferring, and their coach is likely gone after the season. I’m sure they’ll take a victory over Minnesota in the Outback Bowl as their perennial consolation prize.

#18 Nebraska (8-2)

Somebody finally found the Cornhuskers after Ohio State buried them into the crust of the earth on national television. With game vs. Maryland and at Iowa on the docket, there is still potential for Nebraska’s season to be both hilarious and sad.

#17 Florida State (7-3)

How is FSU even ranked after three conference losses in a top-heavy ACC? We must really underestimate how good of a win Boston College is.

#16 LSU (6-3)

The Tigers fired arguably the best coach in program history midseason, put down its mascot, and got shutout by their rival in Alabama. Things could not possibly be worse in Baton Rouge.

#15 Auburn (7-3)

The Other Tigers just had a pitiful 13-7 loss to a bad Georgia team and they’re still in the top 15? WHY? I guess it’s nice to have that #goodloss to A&M early in the season when people thought they were actually good.

#14 West Virginia (8-1)

Is this the basketball poll? What are the Mountaineers doing here? People apparently get really excited when they see competent defense in the Big 12.

#13 Southern California (7-3)

The cockroach of college football that is USC can never be truly killed, as Washington found out last week. We’ll see how the Trojans let everybody down again versus an inconsistent UCLA and a horrendous Notre Dame.

#12 Utah (8-2)

The Utes are a hard team not to like, but they lost to Cal and Washington at home. If you want a chance to be in the Playoff, you have to deliver the goods every week, much like a certain team that resides in Kalamazoo, Michigan...

#11 Oklahoma State (8-2*)

Despite its phantom loss to Central Michigan, all losses count as the Cowboys will likely have a couple more with TCU and Oklahoma left on the schedule.

#10 Colorado (8-2)

The Buffaloes have been getting out their Zubaz pants and partying like it’s the 90’s as they currently lead the Pac-12 South (What is Colorado south of? Canada?). However, the team lost to a then-unranked USC and was blown out by Michigan. Playoff-bound the Buffs are not.

#9 Oklahoma (8-2)

After a pair of embarrassing home losses to Houston and Ohio State, Oklahoma is unbeaten in the Big 12, which could very well change with West Virginia and Oklahoma State still on deck. The conference could be left with a representative in the Playoff, which fine given how incompetent Big 12 leadership has been with expansion and the addition of a title game.

#8 Penn State (8-2)

The Nittany Lions wouldn’t even be sniffing the playoff had Ohio State known what special teams were, but here we are. With games against bottomfeeders like Rutgers and Michigan State, we could have a B1G title game between the third and fourth best teams in the league, which will make for great comedy.

#7 Wisconsin (8-2)

The Badgers could really shake things up for the playoff if they would win a hypothetical match-up in the B1G title game against Penn State, since their losses this year came against Michigan and Ohio State. We might be looking at a scenario where the B1G champion might not even go to the playoff because of #badlosses.

#6 Washington (9-1)

A home loss to a USC team that got shellacked by the Crimson Tide in the opener could be all she wrote for the Pac-12 in the Playoff. Even with wins over Arizona State, Washington State, and potentially Colorado, the committee has made it a point to entrench the same teams at the top regardless of what happens.

#5 Louisville (9-1)

The Lamar Jacksons of Louisville have been impressive all season long, but the loss to Clemson and the absence of a conference title should keep them out of the Playoff. Louisville also has a couple more chances to lose this season with Houston and an improving Kentucky team, so Bobby Petrino might not be able to ride off into the sunset.

#4 Clemson (9-1)

The third set of Tigers in the rankings have looked rough in ACC play with a few close calls, culminating in a heartbreaking loss to a middling Pittsburgh team. They’ve only looked good against bad teams (South Carolina State, Georgia Tech, Boston College, Syracuse), so this team is reminiscent of the Florida State team that limped into the Playoff and got boatraced by Oregon.

#3 Michigan (9-1)

The Wolverines have pretty much rolled everyone this season before the Iowa loss, including B1G powerhouses Rutgers, Illinois, and Maryland. A trap game looms Saturday against Indiana, so we may have more chances to see some vintage Jim Harbaugh freak-outs.

#2 Ohio State (9-1)

The cow college in Columbus looked a lot like Clemson in the middle of the year as they sleepwalked against middle-of-the-road teams (including the loss at Penn State) but has looked pretty good against THE TOUGH BIG TEN with blowout wins over Nebraska and Maryland. With that loss to Penn State, tOSU will likely make the playoff without winning their conference, which will spark a lot of controversy and might change the Playoff for the better.

#1 Alabama (10-0)

The Tide is the best team in the country, hands down. The only question is how many tremendous tweets past and future Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin will send out between now and the end of the Playoff.