CFP Rankings 2023: Will Ohio State remain No. 1?

The College Football Playoff selection committee deemed Ohio State the best team in the nation when it released its initial 2023 rankings a couple of weeks ago.

Last week, the Buckeyes stayed there despite surging performances by both Georgia and Michigan. The reason? Listening to committee chair Boo Corrigan, it sounded like it was all about résumé.

“Well, I can assure you, we talked about it early, we talked about it in the middle, and we talked about it late to make sure that we had it, as a committee,” Corrigan said, “the win over Rutgers, a top-20 defense, put up 28 points, another seven on a pick-six, TreVeyon Henderson being back for his second game, the win over Penn State, the win over Notre Dame, the win at Wisconsin, seven wins over teams with winning records really drove the day.”

The question now is whether the Buckeyes are able to hold the top spot. While Ohio State won last week, trouncing Michigan State, the aforementioned résumé took a hit. Those Ohio State opponents that Corrigan mentioned? They went 0-3 (Notre Dame was idle). And Penn State, arguably the best of the bunch, was manhandled by Michigan, one of the teams nipping at the Buckeyes’ heels.

Meanwhile, Georgia whomped No. 9 Ole Miss, 52-17.

So the time could be ripe for a new No. 1 when the CFP committee unveils its latest rankings later on Tuesday (9 p.m. ET on ESPN).

The argument for Georgia is simple. 

Not only are the Bulldogs the two-time defending champs, but they have star tight end Brock Bowers back. He is not the only thing that makes them go, but he’s certainly one of the better players in the sport and likely going to be the Mackey Award winner at tight end.

I’m more impressed by what Michigan did last Saturday, however, because the Wolverines went on the road and beat what I think is a good Penn State team. 

But the Bulldogs are beginning to look like the team we thought they would be to start the season. I’m not going to discount what they did in the middle of the season — that’s why I kept Michigan at No. 1 in my rankings — but you suddenly have the argument.

As for Michigan, I love that they want to wear the black hat. I love that those guys in that building absolutely love Jim Harbaugh. It doesn’t really matter what we think about Harbaugh and what we think about the sign-stealing, because the kids go out there and just molly-whop whoever’s in front of them. 

If they do that against Maryland (Saturday at noon ET on FOX and the FOX Sports app) and Ohio State, it’s going to be hard to say that they’re not the No. 1 team in the country.

We’ll see what the committee does tonight. Here’s where everybody stood heading in:

The College Football Playoff Rankings (as of Nov. 7)

  1. Ohio State (9-0)
  2. Georgia (9-0)
  3. Michigan (9-0)
  4. Florida State (9-0)
  5. Washington (9-0)
  6. Oregon (8-1)
  7. Texas (8-1)
  8. Alabama (8-1)
  9. Ole Miss (8-1)
  10. Penn State (8-1)
  11. Louisville (8-1)
  12. Oregon State (7-2)
  13. Tennessee (7-2)
  14. Missouri (7-2)
  15. Oklahoma State (7-2)
  16. Kansas (7-2)
  17. Oklahoma (7-2)
  18. Utah (7-2)
  19. LSU (6-3)
  20. Notre Dame (7-3)
  21. Arizona (6-3)
  22. Iowa (7-2)
  23. Tulane (8-1)
  24. North Carolina (7-2)
  25. Kansas State (6-3)

More on the College Football Playoff Rankings

Tuesday’s reveal is the third of six rankings announcements, capped by Selection Sunday on Dec. 3.

The top four teams will compete in the CFP semifinals, which will be held on Jan. 1 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, and at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. The national championship game will be held on Jan. 8 in Houston.

College Football Rankings remaining 2023 schedule

  • Tuesday, Nov. 14: 9 p.m. ET (time approximate)
  • Tuesday, Nov. 21: 7 p.m. ET
  • Tuesday, Nov. 28: 7 p.m. ET
  • Sunday, Dec. 3: Noon ET (Selection Sunday)

RJ Young is a national college football writer and analyst for FOX Sports and the host of the podcast “The Number One College Football Show.” Follow him on Twitter at @RJ_Young and subscribe to “The RJ Young Show” on YouTube.

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