College Football Playoff rankings: Should USC be 4 spots forward of UCLA?

Dissecting the transient, eight-year historical past of the College Football Playoff will be fairly an entertaining train.

There are many enlightening takeaways, resembling Alabama’s document seven appearances, or the actual fact Oklahoma has made the playoff 4 instances however by no means superior previous the semifinal spherical.

However maybe probably the most alarming takeaway of all lies inside the Pac-12, a convention that has not made the CFP because the Washington Huskies again in 2016.

That streak may very effectively come to an finish this season, because the Pac-12 has three groups ranked inside the highest 12 of the newest College Football Playoff rankings. Oregon leads the best way at No. 6, whereas USC is ranked No. 8 and UCLA No. 12.

Whereas FOX Sports activities school soccer analyst Joel Klatt feels the Geese’ No. 6 rating is justified, he was left perplexed in regards to the Bruins coming in 4 spots behind the Trojans, regardless of the 2 applications having equivalent data.

“It just doesn’t make sense to me … it’s an oversight,” Klatt stated on a current episode of his podcast, “The Joel Klatt Show.” “There is no data point I can point to that suggests USC is four spots ahead of UCLA, and there is no rationale to make it make sense.”

Klatt: UCLA should not be ranked decrease than USC

Joel Klatt reacts to the College Football Playoff rankings, and questions UCLA’s place 4 spots behind USC.

When evaluating the 2 applications, the primary level that jumps out is that each groups sport an 8-1 document, with every having a loss towards a convention opponent: UCLA fell to then-No. 10 Oregon, 45-30, whereas the Trojans misplaced to then No. 20 Utah, 43-42.

Nonetheless, whereas UCLA does have two victories towards ranked opponents on its résumé (Utah and Washington), USC doesn’t have any. The truth is, the Trojans solely have one victory over a workforce that has greater than 5 wins heading into Week 11.

From a statistical standpoint, each applications have near-identical numbers on the offensive facet of the ball. The Bruins rank second within the Pac-12 in yards per recreation with 508.4, whereas the Trojans rank third at 495.9. Chip Kelly’s membership places up 40.8 factors per contest, whereas Lincoln Riley’s group averages 41 PPG.

This leads Klatt to a easy conclusion as to why USC is ranked larger.

“This feels all over again like brand bias,” Klatt stated. “I know UCLA fans aren’t going to want to hear that, but USC kind of carries the day as far as brand goes.

“The underside line for me is that it is a rating about Lincoln Riley, about notion, about Caleb Williams, and in regards to the emblem on the facet of the helmet. As a result of there’s no quantity or recreation or movie you could possibly placed on that will counsel USC is 4 spots higher than UCLA.”

However, Klatt does point out that the Bruins could ultimately benefit from the Trojans being ranked four spots above them.

“From UCLA’s standpoint, you in all probability don’t need [the committee] to right this as a result of if you wish to get into the playoff, you need as many huge opponents as you’ll be able to presumably knock off,” Klatt said. “So, when you over-rank USC at this level, that’s what you need. You don’t thoughts this from a consistency standpoint.”

The two Southern California schools are will square off on Nov. 19 at the Rose Bowl. USC holds a 50-33-6 advantage over UCLA all time, but it was the Bruins who had the last laugh, defeating the Trojans 63-33 last season at the Coliseum.

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