Each week John Chancey and Marty Coleman list their top 5. Their rankings after week 5 are below.
Chancey's Top 5
Alabama – Saban flexed on another former assistant. The defense that struggled in the Swamp played very well Saturday. Most of the points Ole Miss scored were well after the outcome had been decided. The games must be played, but it appears the biggest threat left on the schedule is Auburn. Funny things happen at Jordan Hare, but it doesn’t seem likely this year.
Georgia – Arkansas has been a fun story so far this season but Georgia wasn’t hearing any of it. I was thinking it was important that JT Daniels gets healthy soon, because the Dawgs will need him against Auburn and Florida, but to be honest, the Georgia offense is still playing well when he is out.
Iowa – To all that think the real national championship will be played at the SEC Championship in Atlanta, the Big Ten has something to say about that. They have four teams playing very well right now. Iowa is that team in the West that appears to have a clear path to the conference championship game. We saw Iowa make a run a few years ago, but this team feels different. They are starting to pound opponents.
Penn State – Of the teams in the B10 East, Penn State has looked the best to this point, but the division will be determined when the Nittany Lions, the Wolverines & the Buckeyes do their three-way dance. I can see the SEC getting two teams into the playoffs if Alabama & Georgia both have undefeated regular seasons. I’m not sure the Big Ten gets the same benefit of the doubt, especially if Cincy is lurking.
Cincinnati – If you are a G5 team, and want to make a statement, winning in South Bend is a good start. Now we wait and see if enough P5 teams stumble.The Bearcats probably need to go undefeated and for a couple P5 champions to have at least two losses. The win over Notre Dame was great, but Indiana isn’t likely to be ranked, and the rest of the schedule doesn’t provide any more opportunities for big wins. Cincy still has an uphill battle to get into the playoff, but the ACC and PAC may cooperate. There is just this pesky Oklahoma team that keeps winning, albeit unconvincingly. The Cats may want to become Longhorn fans this weekend.
Coleman's Top 5
Alabama – I debated putting Georgia here and I may at some point this year, but the rumors of the Tides death has been greatly exaggerated. Don’t be fooled by the final score, it was 28-0 and over at the half and 35-7 after 3 quarters. Ho-hum. Next up is suddenly average (or maybe they’ve always been average) Texas A&M at Kyle field in a game that has lost a ton of hype. My bet is A&M plays well, but not well enough.
Georgia – If Arkansas was a test for Georgia as I alluded to last week then the Bulldogs are this years valedictorian and are straight up mashing teams. Does Clemson’s loss look better or Georgia’s win look worse? Can they avoid a trip up in a seemingly all of a sudden not so tough SEC.
Penn State – Here by default with the Oregon loss, the Nittany Lions won a workmanlike 24-0 game over an Indiana team that is a shell of its former self. Up next a showdown at Iowa in a top 5 elimination game. Should they make it through that, Penn State still has road games against Ohio State and Michigan State and a home game with Michigan. The Lions will have earned it if they are here at the end of the season.
Cincinnati – With a big win over the Irish in a game they largely dominated the Bearcats get a bump. Problem is the schedule the rest of the way may end up costing them in my rankings and the nations eyes. We’ll worry about that later, for now, job well done Bearcats! Short term, I’d worry about Temple, because that game is Friday after the biggest win in school history and hangovers are a real thing for college kids.
Iowa – Turned a fraudulent Maryland team over 7 times and that’s just what they do. Question is can they do it Saturday against Penn State in a loser go home top 5 matchup. Playing at home means the onus is on the Hawkeyes to impress. Difficult to see them getting back in the top 5 if they lose next weekend, but let’s face it – they’ve passed every test so far. If they get past the Lions this team could end up undefeated headed into Big 10 Championship. Not likely, but they could.