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CFB Playoff rankings: Florida State likely to move up to No. 1


The new College Football Playoff selection committee unveils its second set of rankings Tuesday night, giving us another look at who's got the inside track for the sport's first-ever playoff at the FBS level.

Before we hit a Week 11 that features a ton of top 25 games, here are a few guesses as to who will make the committee's top four and who will be left wondering what they have to do to move up. Keep in mind, this is a look at the playoff picture right now and not projecting wins and losses the rest of the season.

No. 1 seed: Florida State

Record: 8-0

Current CFB 24/7 rank: 2

Quality wins: Notre Dame, Clemson, Louisville, Oklahoma State

Why No. 1: It took a second-half rally to survive a tricky trip to Louisville, but injuries have played a part in the Seminoles' close wins. Sure, they're not as dominant as they were last year, but they have one of the best quarterbacks in the country and the young freshmen are finally starting to live up to their five-star billing. Given the schedule that's left, the only game that might be an issue the rest of the way is a trip to Miami and the ACC title game. The better question might be whether they'll play in the Sugar Bowl semifinal or the Rose Bowl one?

No. 2 seed: Mississippi State

Record: 8-0

Current CFB 24/7 rank: 1

Quality wins: Auburn, LSU

Why No. 2: Committee chair Jeff Long said his group would mix things up week-to-week and one can see that happening by moving the Bulldogs down a spot after struggling to get by Arkansas. Based on the schedule/resume, Florida State has the edge as well though that September win in Baton Rouge is looking better and better.

No. 3 seed: Auburn

Record: 7-1

Current CFB 24/7 rank: 3

Quality wins: Kansas State, Ole Miss, LSU

Why No. 3: Say what you want, but Gus Malzahn's squad knows how to win close games. Considering they beat a team the committee liked enough to rank No. 4 last week, chances are the Tigers don't move an inch in the rankings.

No. 4 seed: Oregon

Record: 7-1

Current CFB 24/7 rank: 5

Quality wins: Michigan State, UCLA, Stanford

In the hunt

» TCU: The Horned Frogs are on the cusp of cracking the top four while playing as well as just about anybody in the country. They still probably need some help, though.

» Alabama: The Crimson Tide's resume doesn't stack up well against others, but that will change with a number of SEC West foes coming to Tuscaloosa.

» Notre Dame: Quality wins might be lacking for the Irish, but they're still an impressive team thanks to a narrow loss at the defending champions. A road trip to Arizona State presents opportunities to help the thinking when it comes to this team.

» Michigan State: An impressive victory over Ohio State might sway pollsters more than the committee, but a resounding win in East Lansing gives the Spartans a chance at sneaking in, given their guts in scheduling Oregon in Eugene.

» Kansas State: The road schedule for the Wildcats is brutal, and that continues this week in Fort Worth against TCU. Win, and Bill Snyder's club is knocking on the door of the top four.

» Arizona State:Quietly, the Sun Devils are building a quality resume that might be due for a boost with a vulnerable Notre Dame team coming to Tempe. The offense is still working out some kinks with Taylor Kelly back from injury at quarterback, but it's the improving defense that gives ASU a chance to win.

» Baylor: An almost non-existent non-conference schedule will make the Bears tough to put in the mix, but a convincing win at Oklahoma this week would send a message to the committee.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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