Panthers Crack Top 25

Panthers

With one more week of regular season college football (save those bowl enhancement games) Pitt cracks the Top 25. The Panthers continue to find their second wind in this all important second half of the season. Their win over the Demon Deacons on Saturday clinched the Coastal Division championship. Pitt will head to Charlotte for a shot at the ACC Football Championship against Clemson.

The College Football Playoff committee’s Top 25 released on Tuesday will play a greater role in determining the Panthers’ post-season play.

Were there any major shakeups in the polls this week for ACC teams? Syracuse dropped out of the top 15 after their loss to Notre Dame in the Shamrock Series on Saturday. The Irish solidified their top 4 playoff berth with the win. The loss by the Orange will have an impact upon their bowl bid but just how much remains to be seen.

A big factor in that department comes from the question, how well do Syracuse fans travel? It all comes down to filling seats. As a clarification, if you thought the limited number of Syracuse fans at Yankee Stadium was indicative, think again. The game was a Notre Dame showcase event and there was a limited allotment of tickets available for Syracuse fans.

We’ll look at both the AP Top 25 and the USA Today Coaches Poll in addition to how ACC teams stack up in the ESPN FPI. Take note of the additional ACC teams in the Coaches Poll. Bowl committees are looking at these same numbers when considering who will receive a bid.

Panthers Crack Top 25 – The Polls

RANKTEAM-AP TOP 25 RANKTEAM-USA TODAY TOP 25
#2#2
#3#3
#19#19
#24#25
#RV 27#RV 29
#RV 32
#RV 38
#RV 39
#RV 41

Panthers Crack Top 25 – ESPN FPI

RANKTEAMESPN FPI
#1CLEMSON30.7
#2ALABAMA30.4
#3GEORGIA25.2
#4MICHIGAN23.8
#6NOTRE DAME20.2
#22MIAMI12.8
#32NC STATE10.1
#34BOSTON COLLEGE9.2
#36GEORGIA TECH9.0
#39DUKE8.4
#41SYRACUSE8.0
#47VIRGINIA5.2
#48PITT5.1

A few quick notes about how teams are stacking up in the ESPN FPI. We’ve included the top 4 teams as they don’t match up with the current playoff scheme. Could things change in this last week? As the past few weeks have shown, anything is possible.

Here are a few scenarios to play out in your mind –

  • Big Ten – Michigan loses to Ohio State in the East championship
  • Big Ten – Winner of East championship loses to Northwestern in Championship
  • SEC – Georgia and Alabama play for the Championship
  • SEC – Georgia wins
  • ACC – Pitt and Clemson play for the Championship
  • ACC – Pitt wins

Could Michigan get bumped out of a top 4 playoff spot? Could Alabama lose a spot as well? What would happen if the Tigers lose?

We played around with the numbers at FiveThirtyEight.com. When it comes to a national title, here’s what it looks like if the current top 4 teams all win out-

  1. Alabama  40%
  2. Clemson  36%
  3. Michigan  11%
  4. Notre Dame  9%

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