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College football rankings: How Week 9’s top 25 scores changed the Playoff picture

Below, final scores and quick notes on each AP-ranked game from a weekend that saw four unbeaten teams knocked off.

NCAA Football: Nebraska at Wisconsin Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Tuesday night, the College Football Playoff committee will reveal its first top 25 of the season.

We don’t yet know exactly how things will stack up, but we have a pretty good idea, and we’ll know even more after this weekend.

Below, let’s go through the current AP top 25, the simplest approximation of the committee’s likeliest ranked teams, with notes on each team’s Week 9 game.

Keep in mind the things the committee does that a poll might not do: specifically value games against other ranked teams, value games against bowl-eligible teams, and reshuffle the entire board every week, rather than just sliding teams up and down.

Unbeatens falling this week: Nebraska, Baylor, West Virginia, and Boise State.

Undefeated teams remaining: Alabama, Michgian, Clemson, Washington, and ... Western Michigan!

No. 2 Michigan 32, Michigan State 23

Breaking that slump (via another weird ending) against MSU probably felt good, but it probably won’t register in the committee’s eyes as anything much more than a road win over a non-bowl team.

No. 3 Clemson 37, No. 12 Florida State 34

Spot in the ACC Championship practically clinched. Even a loss down the stretch (Syracuse, Pitt, at Wake Forest) wouldn’t keep the Tigers out, though it could complicate the Playoff path.

No. 4 Washington 31, No. 17 Utah 24

The Huskies’ first win over a sure quality opponent of the entire year, and on the road, too. Still win-and-in, though.

No. 5 Louisville 32, Virginia 25

Unlikely to move the strength-of-schedule needle, but only winning thanks to a last-minute heave doesn’t look excellent. Still, keeping pace behind Clemson in the ACC is what matters most.

No. 6 Ohio State 24, Northwestern 20

Just get to the Michigan game. Good chance that’ll still be a play-in game. If it comes down to it for the committee, there’s a chance NU could count as a decent opponent.

No. 11 Wisconsin 23, No. 7 Nebraska 17

The Badgers made it through that part of the schedule we were all so worried about with a 6-2 record, which almost nobody saw coming. A Big Ten West title and New Year’s Six bowl are on the table, and they might even be the two-loss team with the best Playoff hopes.

Baylor v Texas Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Texas 35, No. 8 Baylor 34
Oklahoma State 37, No. 10 West Virginia 20

The Big 12 is so nearly out of the Playoff, losing both of its undefeated teams in one Saturday (and Charlie Strong certainly keeps his job for several more days).

No. 9 Texas A&M 52, New Mexico State 10

This doesn’t matter.

Wyoming 30, No. 13 Boise State 28

The dancin’ Cowboys are bowl-eligible for the first time since 2011. The Mountain West Championship could still be a New Year’s play-in game, but Western Michigan is now the favorite.

No. 14 Florida 24, Georgia 10

SEC East leader, still. Clear path to getting a crack at Bama. (You sure you wanna take it? Maybe pretend to get lost on a side quest given to you by a merchant.)

No. 15 Auburn 40, Ole Miss 29

The Tigers are a home win against Vanderbilt and road win at Georgia away from making the Iron Bowl an SEC Championship play-in. Also, the Rebels might miss a bowl after starting in the top 15? Thought that was Notre Dame’s thing.

No. 16 Oklahoma 56, Kansas 3

Nobody cares.

South Carolina 24, No. 18 Tennessee 21

The SEC East standings are in absolute shambles, thanks to Vol nemesis Will Muschamp. More than usual. As in: Kentucky’s authoritatively in second place.

USF 52, No. 22 Navy 45

The AAC’s pretty much out of the New Year’s race in Week 9 after entering the season with Houston ranked No. 15 in the country. If Houston beats Louisville, maybe that can change.

No. 24 Penn State 62, Purdue 24

That doesn’t matter. Lot of points, though! And still ahead of Ohio State in the Big Ten East.

No. 25 Virginia Tech 39, Pitt 36

The ACC Coastal remains as volatile as ever, but the Hokies now have tiebreakers over the other two top division contenders. A New Year’s bowl could be a realistic goal.

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