Well, it didn’t take long.
A week after Michigan football (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) found itself on the outside looking for the initial seeding in this year’s college football playoffs, the Wolverines are on the safe side this time. the bubble, now ranked No. 3 by the committee.
Michigan is also No. 3 in the USA TODAY Coaches and AP poll following Saturday’s 52-17 victory at Rutgers. UM hosts Nebraska this Saturday.
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Georgia (9-0, 6-0 SEC) is the new No. 1, after eliminating Tennessee, Ohio State (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) remains at No. 2. TCU (9-0, 6-0 Big 12) moves up three spots after last weekend’s upset at No. 4. Tennessee (8-1, 4-1 SEC) drops to No. 5 after its road loss against the Bulldogs.
Oregon (8-1, 6-0 Pac 12), whose only loss is to Georgia, moves to No. 6. LSU (7-2, 5-1 SEC) just eliminated Alabama at home in OT and made a big jump from ninth to seventh. USC (8-1, 5-1 Pac 12) survived a scare against California and is ranked eighth, followed by the Crimson Tide (7-2, 5-2 SEC) ninth.
Clemson (8-1, 6-0 SEC), which suffered its first loss of the season Saturday against Notre Dame, takes a big fall from No. 4 to 10.
USC (8-1, 5-1 Pac 12) survived a scare against California and is ranked eighth, followed by the Crimson Tide (7-2, 5-2 SEC) ninth.
It was the second time the 13-person committee — led by Boo Corrigan, chairman of the CFP selection committee and NC State athletic director — had met in Grapevine, Texas, to share the rankings; the sixth and final seeding will take place Dec. 4 after the conference championship weekend.
On Monday, Jim Harbaugh admitted he’s more aware of what other top teams in the country are doing as the stakes rise each week.
“Yeah, maybe some,” he said. “Mostly (focused) on what we do.”
Wolverines were No. 6 at this time last season and the initial ranking of No. 5 this season was a bit of a surprise given their average winning margin of 30 points per game. It only took a step forward this week, when Wolverines had perhaps their best second half of the season (an area they’ve already been stellar at) and beat Rutgers, 38-0, to head towards a 52-17 road. victory.
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Players say they are well aware of what is going on.
“You can’t help but notice it, people are posting it everywhere,” linebacker Michael Barrett said Monday. “I don’t do too much for myself, I try to keep the guys at the level where we are. The biggest thing to do right now is to keep winning, keep playing our ball and if we keep to move forward, everything will be decided.”
Michigan only managed a top-four finish last year after victory over Ohio State catapulted the Wolverines from No. 5 to No. 2. UM was No. 2 in the loss in last year’s national semifinal against Georgia in the Orange Bowl.
Next stop: Cornhuskers
Match: No. 3 Michigan (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten) vs. Nebraska (3-6, 2-4).
To start up: 3:30 p.m. Saturday; Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
TV/Radio: ABC; WXYT-FM (97.1), WTKA-AM (1050).
Line: Wolverines by 29.
Top 25 College Football Playoff Committee
- Georgia (9-0)
- Ohio State (9-0)
- Michigan (9-0)
- TCU (9-0)
- Tennessee (8-1)
- Oregon (8-1)
- USL (7-2)
- USC (8-1)
- Alabama (7-2)
- Clemson (8-1)
- Mississippi (8-1)
- UCLA (8-1)
- Utah (7-2)
- Penn State (7-2)
- North Carolina (8-1)
- NC status (7-2)
- Tulane (8-1)
- Texas (6-3)
- Kansas State (6-3)
- Our Lady (6-3)
- Illinois (7-2)
- Central Florida (7-2)
- Florida State (6-3)
- Kentucky (6-3)
- Washington (7-2)
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