College Football Rankings 2018: Latest Polls, Predictions for Week 13 Standings

Steve Silverman@@profootballboyFeatured ColumnistNovember 19, 2018

Michigan should remain in the CFP playoff structure after surviving a tight game against Indiana.
Michigan should remain in the CFP playoff structure after surviving a tight game against Indiana.Tony Ding/Associated Press

College football is regularly known for its volatile changes in its rankings, but that has not been the case this season.

It's not surprising to see one undefeated team as the season hits rivalry week, but to have three is perhaps a bit of a shock. 

Alabama Crimson Tide, Clemson and Notre Dame remain undefeated following convincing wins in Saturday's action.

Those three teams remain at the top of both the Associated Press and the Coaches Rankings, and they are joined by the Michigan Wolverines at the No. 4 spot. Michigan got by Indiana and improved to 10-1 with the win.

Michigan dropped its season opener to Notre Dame but have reeled off 10 straight wins since then. If Michigan can beat archrival Ohio State on the road this week and Northwestern in the Big Ten Championship Game, it seems likely the Wolverines will remain in the College Football Playoff structure.

However, Michigan is not guaranteed of that scenario. Fifth-ranked Georgia closes its regular season against Georgia Tech this week, and the Bulldogs will face Alabama in the SEC title game. Should Georgia upset Alabama, it would be difficult to keep the Bulldogs out of the playoffs.

Alabama is almost assured of getting into the playoffs. Nick Saban's team closes the regular season against Auburn prior to the SEC title game, and the Crimson Tide would have to lose to the Tigers and Bulldogs to miss the playoffs. That would be a shocking development because Alabama appears to have one of the strongest college football teams in the last couple of decades.

Clemson has its regular-season finale against South Carolina and the ACC title game against Pittsburgh, while the Fighting Irish play their regular-season finale at USC this week.

The latest CFP rankings will be announced Tuesday, and the AP and Coaches polls were basically in lockstep as far as the Top 10 is concerned.

The only difference is that the AP poll has undefeated UCF and LSU tied at the No. 8 spot, while the Coaches Poll has LSU ranked eighth and UCF ranked ninth.

Alabama Athletics @UA_Athletics

Roll Tide! @AlabamaFTBL storms past The Citadel in the 2nd Half. #RollTide https://t.co/BSkehfeBz7

Associated Press Rankings

1. Alabama (61*), 11-0
2. Clemson, 11-0
3. Notre Dame, 11-0
4. Michigan, 10-1
5. Georgia, 10-1
6. Oklahoma, 10-1
7. Washington State, 10-1
8. UCF, 10-0
8. LSU, 9-2
10. Ohio State, 10-1

*-Alabama has all 61 first-place votes

Michigan faces its biggest test since its loss to Notre Dame at Ohio State. The Buckeyes have beaten Michigan six straight times and have won 13 of the last 14 games in the series.

Ohio State is coming off a 52-51 overtime victory over Maryland, and the state of the Buckeyes' defense is questionable. Michigan's greatest strength this season has been its defense, but the Wolverines gave up 385 yards to the Hoosiers (195 rushing, 190 passing), and that unit could be vulnerable against Ohio State and sensational quarterback Dwayne Haskins.

No. 6 Oklahoma will have a major test at West Virginia this week. The Mountaineers are coming off a heartbreaking 45-41 loss to Oklahoma State, and that was a game they led 31-14 at halftime. West Virginia should be prepared to play one of its best games of the season against the Sooners.

Seattle Times Sports @SeaTimesSports

Gardner Minshew threw a WSU single game record SEVEN TD passes in the Cougs’ demolition of Arizona. 👀👀 Next stop: 🍎 cup. https://t.co/r5d2IKzrw7

Seventh-ranked Washington State hosts archrival Washington Saturday, and quarterback Gardner Minshew has the Cougars flying high. Washington State pummeled Arizona 69-28, and Minshew threw seven TD passes in that game.



The Top Four spots in the Week 13 CFP rankings will once again belong to Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame and Michigan, in that order.

Once again, there should not be any changes, and the CFP poll should mimic those of the AP and the Coaches.

However, the Week 14 rankings could be quite a bit different if the Wolverines can't reverse their losing ways against the Buckeyes.

It doesn't seem likely that Alabama, Clemson or Notre Dame will get tested by Auburn, South Carolina or USC, but all three are rivalry games, so don't tell the Tigers, Gamecocks or Trojans that they don't have a shot.