College Football Playoff Rundown- November 22 rankings


The Coliseum in LA will play host to the matchup between USC and Notre Dame

Trevor Butler, Sports Editor

Week 12 brought the heat in the world of college football. While the top four of the playoff rankings remained the same, it wasn’t without nerves for any of them. Below the top four, chaos unfolded as highly ranked teams either survived close scares, or in the case of Tennessee, fell in shocking upsets. Here’s the top 25 as we head into rivalry week. 

  1. Georgia (Last Week: 1) 
  2. Ohio State (2) 
  3. Michigan (3) 
  4. TCU (4) 
  5. LSU (6) 
  6. USC (7) 
  7. Alabama (8) 
  8. Clemson (9) 
  9. Oregon (12) 
  10. Tennessee (5)
  11.  Penn State (11) 
  12. Kansas State (15)
  13. Washington (17) 
  14. Utah (10) 
  15. Notre Dame (18) 
  16. Florida State (19)
  17. North Carolina (13) 
  18. UCLA (16) 
  19. Tulane (21) 
  20. Ole Miss (14) 
  21. Oregon State (23) 
  22. UCF (20) 
  23. Texas (NR-Not Ranked) 
  24. Cincinnati (25) 
  25. Louisville (NR) 

“The new rankings are honestly pretty decent. Personally, I’d rank USC higher than LSU and Clemson higher than Alabama. I’m excited for The Game this weekend, I like Ohio State’s odds to win. OSU has home field advantage and is one of the strongest offenses in college football,” Andrew Leffingwell said. 

“I think most of the teams are properly ranked, I like Oregon where they’re at. With both Ohio State and Michigan being in the top four it’ll be exciting to see how it plays out,” John Allison said. 


Last week’s game of the week took place in Los Angeles, where crosstown rivals USC and UCLA went toe to toe under the lights of the Rose Bowl. Caleb Williams showed out for the Trojans, accumulating 470 yards through the air in one of the top five games of the week. 

#7 USC 48, #16 UCLA 45 

Williams and UCLA QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson went head-to-head, with DTR’s three interceptions being a major difference maker in the matchup. The Bruins struck first and led 21-20 heading into halftime, but touchdowns from former Pittsburgh star Jordan Addison and running back Austin Jones sandwiched in between UCLA scores gave the Trojans a 34-31 advantage heading to the fourth quarter. The Trojans and Bruins traded scores in the fourth, but UCLA’s final TD came too late, helping USC hang in and cement themselves in the thick of the playoff race and atop the PAC-12. 

#3 Michigan 19, Illinois 17 

Michigan was on upset alert from the beginning, and when superstar RB Blake Corum went down for the Wolverines things began to look bleak. Corum struck first for Michigan, but an Illinios field goal made it a 7-3 ballgame heading to the break. Jake Moody converted the FG for the Wolverines to put them ahead 10-3 in the third, before Illini RB and NCAA leading rusher Chase Brown scored two straight TD’s. As the fourth quarter began, Michigan’s season rested on the leg of Jake Moody. The kicker wasn’t intimidated and hit all three field goals attempted in the fourth, including the game winner with only nine seconds left. 

#4 TCU 29, Baylor 28 

Yet another game to be decided at the wire saw TCU keep their undefeated season alive. The Horned Frogs traveled to Waco. Kendre Miller kept his touchdown streak going, but Baylor hung around and kept the game tied at 14. TCU tight end Gunnar Henderson scored the only touchdown of the third, but kicker Griffin Kell missed the extra point, allowing Baylor to gain momentum and take a 28-20 lead with only minutes left. TCU quickly responded with six, but the two-point conversion was no good, leaving the Bears ahead 28-26. A quick stop gave the Frogs the ball back, and this time Kell came up clutch and sent TCU to 11-0. 

#12 Oregon 20, #10 Utah 17 

Autzen Stadium in Eugene played host to a crucial matchup for the PAC-12 title game. The hometown Ducks struck first, and by halftime it seemed like Oregon would cruise to a resounding victory as they led 17-3 at the break. Utah wouldn’t go quietly though, as they scored two quick third quarter touchdowns to knot the game up at 17 a piece. Oregon’s Camden Lewis converted on a field goal to give the Ducks a 20-17 lead with 11 minutes left in the game, and the Utes couldn’t find any more offense. The win put Oregon a win away from clinching a spot in the PAC-12 title game. 

South Carolina 63, #5 Tennessee 38 

Did they discover the technology to travel through time in South Carolina? Spencer Rattler came out slinging like his 2019 self, as his six touchdowns led the Gamecocks to a convincing victory over a playoff hopeful Volunteers squad. The game was never in doubt for South Carolina, as Tennessee could only get the game as close as four points before falling behind again. The blowout left many people wondering “Tennessee, what happened?” Just weeks ago, it seemed that the Vols would cruise to the playoffs, but now they’ll be watching from the couch. 


With rivalry week on the horizon, my top 25 shows some small changes. The playoff stays mostly the same, aside from a flip flopping of 2-4, but below that we see some major changes. 

  1. Georgia
  2. Ohio State
  3. TCU (+1)
  4. Michigan (-1)
  5. USC (+1)
  6. Clemson (+2)
  7. LSU (-2)
  8. Alabama (-1)
  9. Oregon
  10. Penn State (+1)
  11. Washington (+2)
  12. Tennessee (-2)
  13. Kansas State (-1)
  14. Utah
  15. Florida State (+1)
  16. Notre Dame (-1)
  17. UCLA (+1)
  18. Tulane (+1)
  19. North Carolina (-2)
  20. UCF (+2)
  21. Oregon State
  22. Ole Miss (-2)
  23. Cincinnati (+1)
  24. Texas (-1)
  25. Louisville


Week 13 is a big one. It’s rivalry week in the world of College Football, and some of the matchups could cause a major shakeup in the playoff landscape. Here are the five biggest games for week 13. 

#9 Oregon at #21 Oregon State (Civil War) 

The Beavers are having a great year for the first time in a while, and they look to take down their in-state rival Ducks. If they can do so, it’ll be the first time since 2016 that both Oregon squads finish the year with the same record. 

South Carolina at #8 Clemson (Palmetto Bowl) 

SCar comes into the 119th meeting riding the high of their upset victory over Tennessee, while Clemson looks to keep on winning in hopes it will find the Tigers a spot in the Playoff. Can Clemson keep themselves on track, or will lightning strike twice for the Gamecocks? 

#15 Notre Dame at #8 USC 

Much like Clemson, USC knows that winning is all they can do to get themselves into playoff contention. The Trojans face off against an interesting Notre Dame squad, one that has rallied from early losses to Marshall and Stanford to put together a respectable record. This week is first year coach Marcus Freeman’s chance to show he and the Irish are for real. 

Kansas at #12 Kansas State (Sunflower Showdown) 

The battle for the Sunflower State has bigger implications for both the Wildcats and outside parties. A K-state win sends them to Dallas to take on TCU for the Big 12 title game, while a Jayhawks upset in Manhattan sends the Texas Longhorns to fight for the title. Lance Leipold and Kansas will look to set the tone for the future of KU football in their best season since the late 2000’s.  

#3 Michigan at #2 Ohio State (The Game) 

This is the big one. #3 vs #2. The most hyped edition of The Game since 2006 ensures the winner a spot in the Big 10 title game and possibly the playoff, while the loser will have to hope for a little bit of luck come selection Sunday. The Wolverines will look to snag their second win in a row, while the Buckeyes will look to win for the first time since 2019. (The 2020 edition was canceled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic)