LSU new No. 1 in CFP rankings; Tide down to No. 5

Field Level Media

November 12, 2019 at 6:33 pm.

LSU’s victory at Alabama vaulted the Tigers to No. 1 in the second week of the College Football Playoffs rankings, released Tuesday night.

The selection committee elevated 9-0 LSU from the second spot after the Tigers’ 46-41 win Saturday over the Crimson Tide, who fell to No. 5. Ohio State (9-0) dropped to No. 2 after a 73-14 victory over Maryland.

“We spent some time discussing it,” selection committee chairman Rob Mullens, the athletic director at Oregon, said of the top two spots.

“We have two great teams at the top in LSU and Ohio State. Just like I said last week — the committee is really impressed with Ohio State and the consistent level of high play. But when you look at LSU’s resume with a win over Alabama on the road, that makes it their fourth top-20 win, and they’re the only team in the nation with that.

“They’re deserving of that No. 1 ranking.”

The Tigers also have wins over Texas (No. 19 in this week’s rankings), Florida (No. 11) and Auburn (No. 12).

Clemson (10-0) is third, with Georgia (8-1) fourth ahead of Alabama (8-1), which was third last week.

The Bulldogs got the nod on the strength of wins over No. 16 Notre Dame and Florida, Mullens said.

“Alabama just has the tough loss against LSU, but you compare that against Georgia’s resume and the two big wins that Georgia has,” Mullens said.

The top four teams in the final CFP rankings will head to the national semifinals, to be played Dec. 29 at the Peach Bowl in Atlanta and the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz.

The national final is scheduled for Jan. 13 at the Superdome in New Orleans.

The rest of the top 10 is No. 6 Oregon (8-1), No. 7 Utah (8-1), No. 8 Minnesota (9-0), No. 9 Penn State (8-1) and No. 10 Oklahoma (8-1). The Gophers jumped from 17th after knocking off the Nittany Lions on Saturday night for their first significant victory of the season.

“When you watched the game last week, they beat a Penn State team that was ranked No. 4 … we were really impressed with what Minnesota did,” Mullens said.

The only unbeaten team not in the top 10 is No. 13 Baylor (9-0).

The top-rated team from the Group of Five conferences (American Athletic, Conference USA, Mid-American, Mountain West, Sun Belt) is 8-1 Cincinnati at No. 17.