Another week in the 2017-2018 College Football Season means that it’s another week where teams got shoved out of the running for a College Football Playoff berth. Things went incredibly bad for the Big Ten. Top 10 ranked Ohio State lost straight up to Iowa. Top 10 ranked Penn State lost straight up to Michigan State. Neither has a shot to get back into the CFP. Zero. Zilch.
The only Big Ten team that does have a shot are the Wisconsin Badgers. Keep reading to find out where I rank the Badgers in my Top 20. Also, check out the other teams in my Top 20 for 2017 College Football Week 11.
2017 College Football Top 20 Rankings Week 11
1. Alabama Crimson Tide 9-0
The Tide didn’t cover the spread in their 24 to 10 win over the LSU Tigers in Week 10. No worries. From my perspective, holding LSU’s offense to only 10 points was fantastic. Alabama could be in some trouble moving forward. A rash of injuries on the defense will make Bama’s game versus Mississippi State in Week 11 more interesting than it should be.
2. Georgia Bulldogs 9-0
Georgia faces a tough task beating Auburn this week. If the Bulldogs get through Auburn, they might go undefeated during the regular season. That would set up a massive battle against Alabama, or Auburn, in the SEC Championship.
3. Wisconsin Badgers 9-0
The AP Poll has no love for the Badgers. Wisconsin is ranked behind Notre Dame, Clemson, and Oklahoma on the AP Poll. Hey, AP writers, Wisconsin plays in the Big Ten and they’re undefeated. That makes them a Top 3 team this week.
4. Miami Hurricanes 8-0
What does Miami have to do to get into the CFP? So far, the only thing the Miami Hurricanes have done is win football games. In College Football Week 9, Miami obliterated Virginia Tech 28 to 10 as a +2.5 home dog. That wasn’t enough, I suppose. This week, Miami does play Notre Dame, though. That game could determine who jumps into the College Football Playoff Rankings.
5. Notre Dame Irish 8-1
Notre Dame has been brilliant this season. There is something that bothers me about Notre Dame, though. The best team they’ve played all season long were the Georgia Bulldogs. That game took place in Week 2. Beating Miami in Miami is no easy task. Notre Dame could fall flat this Saturday versus the Canes. If that happens, there’s no way the Irish get into the College Football Playoff Top 4.
6. Clemson Tigers 8-1
Man, Clemson’s getting the benefit of the doubt for their loss to Syracuse. The Tigers beat North Carolina State this past Saturday in Week 9. Was it a great win? I don’t think so. North Carolina State isn’t a great team. Why, then, are the Tigers ranked 4th in both the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll? Beats me.
7. TCU Horned Frogs 8-1
TCU bounced back beautifully from their first loss of the season to Iowa State by beating the Texas Longhorns. The Horned Frogs battle versus the Oklahoma Sooners this Saturday is massive. The winner is the only Big 12 team with a shot to get into the CFP.
8. Oklahoma Sooners 8-1
I rank the Sooners just a step under the TCU Horned Frogs. The reason is because Oklahoma’s defense isn’t nearly as formidable as TCU’s. If Oklahoma can beat the Horned Frogs in College Football Week 11, don’t worry. I might jump them all the way to 5 or 4 on my College Football Week 12 rankings.
9. Washington 8-1
Washington has a long road to get back onto the CFP’s radar. They must hope that the teams ahead of them falter while USC continues to win impressively. Then, Washington must beat USC in the Pac 12 Championship. It could happen. It’s not likely to happen. But, it could happen.
10. Central Florida 8-0
Wisconsin being undefeated and Central Florida being undefeated are two different things. UCF doesn’t have much of a defense. The Knights allow 20.2 points per game on average versus teams in the American Athletic Conference. Wisconsin allows 13.3 points per game versus teams in the Big Ten Conference.
11. Auburn 7-2
Auburn could end up as the only 7 and 2 team in the College Football Playoff. No, seriously. What if Auburn goes undefeated, including winning the SEC Championship, from now until the final College Football Playoff poll is released? What happens then? Are you telling me that the CFP won’t include a team from the SEC in their final four? Doubtful.
12. Oklahoma State 7-2
The only reason Oklahoma State is at 12 while a couple of other 2 loss teams are behind the Cowboys is because the other 2 loss teams have looked absolutely horrible in at least 1 of their 2 losses. That’s a long way of writing that Oklahoma State is the best 2-loss team in the nation after the Auburn Tigers.
13. Ohio State 7-2
Oh, man, the loss to Iowa was bad. I mean, bad. As a -21 road favorite, Ohio State was supposed to dominate Iowa. Not only did Ohio State not dominate Iowa, they didn’t get close to winning the football game. The Hawkeyes beat the Buckeyes 55 to 23. That’s a ridiculously terrible loss. I’m beginning to question what Ohio State’s doing on both offense and defense.
14. Michigan State 7-2
The Spartans pulled off the somewhat shocking 27 to 24 straight up win over Penn State. I’m not sure if Michigan State is good enough to beat Ohio State straight up this Saturday. I do believe Sparty keeps it closer than 14 points, though.
15. USC 8-2
Eh, so USC beats Arizona 49 to 35. Big whoop. Should I move the Trojans higher than 15th just because of that? I don’t think so. The Pac 12 is a mess this season. Only Washington is playing decent football. We’ll see what happens with USC. I’m not holding my breath that they improve because now the Trojans’ defense is a mess.
16. Penn State 7-2
Talk about a team that has fallen big time in a short time. The 1-point loss to Ohio State can sort of be forgiven. The 3-point loss to Michigan State can’t. Penn State, to put it mildly, is better than both the Buckeyes and the Spartans. The Nittany Lions held a 35 to 20 lead going into the 4th quarter versus Ohio State. They held a 24 to 21 lead going into the 4th quarter versus the Michigan State Spartans. They lost both games.
17. Mississippi State 7-2
After two straight losses to Georgia and Auburn, I am impressed with how Mississippi State came back guns blazing. The Bulldogs wins since the two losses should set them nicely as a huge home dog against Alabama this Saturday. They won’t beat Alabama, but they could cover the spread. Covering against the Crimson Tide is a victory for the Tide’s SEC opponents.
18. Michigan 7-2
Suddenly, Michigan has a chance to get to the Big Ten Championship. The Wolverines are 4 and 2 in the conference. Michigan State is 5 and 1. Ohio State is 5 and 1. There are only 3 games left. The odds are long. It’s possible, though.
19. Washington State 8-2
Washington State must win their next 2 games. If the Cougars can, they’ll play in the Pac 12 Championship. The Cougars face Utah and Washington in their next two. They played well in Week 10 when beating Stanford 24 to 21. If there’s any time for Washington State’s defense to regain it’s early season form, this is the time.
20. Virginia Tech 7-2
I never believed VA Tech should have been favored over Miami in the Hokies 10 to 28 loss to Miami in College Football Week 10. Virginia Tech is a good football team. Beating Miami on the road isn’t easy for any team, though, much less an Atlantic Coast Conference foe. I’ve kept VA Tech in my Top 20. But, let’s be honest. The two best teams that the Hokies have faced dominated them. Wins over Delaware, East Carolina, Old Dominion, Boston College, North Carolina, and Duke don’t mean much.