Ranking the FBS conferences: SEC holds firm ahead of Pac-12

There was plenty of movement in the third set of College Football Playoff rankings, but how did it affect the overall FBS conference rankings? The CFB 24/7 team ranked the teams within each of the Power Five conferences (see navigation tabs at top of story) and each of the FBS conferences overall:

1. SEC

The SEC has seven teams in the selection committee's top 25, including two of the top five and five of the top 15.

2. Pac-12

People chuckled at us a few weeks ago when we said the Pac-12 was closer to being No. 1 than to being No. 3. It looks as if the selection committee agrees with us, with four Pac-12 teams in the top 14.

3. Big 12

The "Baylor or TCU" conundrum is going to be one of the more interesting storylines to follow the rest of the way, assuming both win out. What it could come down to is whether the committee thinks Baylor rallying to beat TCU at home trumps TCU's better non-conference schedule. And TCU also looks to have a "better" loss -- the Horned Frogs lost to Baylor, whereas Baylor lost to West Virginia.

4. Big Ten

The conference's lack of marquee non-conference wins as a whole hurts. And your best team, Ohio State, losing to ACC also-ran Virginia Tech also hurts.

5. ACC

The ACC has four teams in the committee's top 25. But only one of those teams, Florida State, is in the top 18.

6. Mountain West

Boise State and Colorado State look to be two of the three teams in the mix to garner the automatic bid given to the best "Group of Five" team (i.e., the best team from outside the Power Five conferences).

7. American Athletic

Memphis and Temple are two of the biggest surprises of the season. At the same time, when Memphis and Temple are surprising, it very well could mean your league as a whole is not that good.

8. Conference USA

Marshall is the other "Group of Five" team in the mix for the automatic bid. But the Herd's schedule is, to be nice about it, made up of flotsam and jetsam.

9. Mid-American

Northern Illinois beat Toledo on Tuesday night to take a huge step toward nailing down the West Division title. And as with the Pac-12, where the South is much deeper than the North, and the SEC, where the West is much better than the East, the MAC has one division far better than the other (the West trumps the East).

10. Sun Belt

The best team in the league might be Georgia Southern. Alas, because the Eagles are in their first season in the FBS ranks, they're not allowed under NCAA rules to go to a bowl.

Follow CFB 24/7 on Twitter at @NFL_CFB.

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