The ESPN Football Power Index (FPI) college football ranking and computer prediction model is a measure of team strength that predicts a team’s future performance.
Leaderboards and result predictions are based on 20,000 simulations of a team’s season using a combination of analytics including past results, opponent quality and a team’s schedule.
Note: This is not a traditional “power ranking” of the best teams, but rather a prediction of how each team would finish against an average opponent on a neutral field, ranked by expected points advantage per game.
25.Louisville. The Cardinals finish the season 7-5 and have a long way to go against the ACC class next year.
24. Oklahoma. ESPN kept the Sooners in the rankings despite a 6-6 finish as a predicted 10.1 points-per-game lead came on a neutral field.
23. State of Oregon. The Beavers ended the season strong with a win over rival Oregon that kept the Ducks out of the Pac-12 title game.
22. Washington. A strong finish for the Huskies under first-year coach Kalen DeBoer, who will have a chance to show that offense in a bowl game.
21. Baylor. The defending Big 12 champions failed to repeat this season, ending only with a 6-6 aggregate record.
20. Illinois. Strong defense and a running game, the Illini had the Big Ten West race for most of the season before falling away and suffering some costly losses late in the season.
19.Minnesota. A nasty three-game losing streak midseason threw the Gophers off course, but they won four of the last five, including against rival Wisconsin.
18. State of Mississippi. The Bulldogs won eight games that season, capping it off with a resounding victory over rival Ole Miss on Thanksgiving.
17. Notre Dame. Marcus Freeman’s team bounced back strongly after a poor start to the year, winning five straight games before losing in the finals at USC.
16. Ole Fraulein. After much speculation, the Rebels will retain head coach Lane Kiffin, but he needs to put the team on a stronger footing after losing four of the last five.
15.USC. An injury to Caleb Williams and a simply poor defense doomed the Trojans to a Pac-12 title game when they had a shot at the college football playoffs.
14.Oregon. The Ducks won 8 straight midseasons and scored 40 points in each game, but dropped two of the last three to Washington and Oregon State.
13.LSU. A loss to Texas A&M in the Finals dropped the Tigers out of contention for the college football playoffs, and then Georgia put 50 on them in the SEC title game, but they appear to have some potential with Garrett Nussmeier at quarterback.
12. State of Florida. Mike Norvell seems to have the Seminoles on steadier feet after winning nine games behind a strong performance.
11. State of Kansas. The new Big 12 champions after a valiant battle against the then-perfect TCU and what will be a New Year’s bowl bid for the Wildcats.
10. TCU. The Horned Frogs aren’t undefeated after Arlington, but the Horned Frogs are still a safe bet for the college football playoffs, or at least they should be.
9. Klemson. Dabo may have finally made the move to quarterback, swapping DJ Uiagalelei for Cade Klubnik and clinching a big win against UNC for the ACC title with good results.
8. Penn State. A strong finish gave the Lions 10 wins and a trip to the Rose Bowl against Pac-12 champion Utah.
7. Utah. This Utes team made it to USC to win the conference and gets another shot in Pasadena after playing an instant classic there against Ohio State a year ago.
6.Texas. The ESPN rankings stubbornly kept the Longhorns in the top 10 through ups and downs for most of this season, but they finished 8-4 with a nice win over Baylor.
5. Tennessee. Big Orange won’t make the college football playoffs after two costly late-season losses, but will play an NY6 bowl behind that great offense.
4.Michigan. Look the other way, Wolverine fans: ESPN has put UM behind the Buckeyes in the rankings despite the head-to-head win, but still gives Michigan an edge when it comes to making and winning the national title.
3. State of Ohio. It looks like the Bucks will make the playoffs thanks to USC’s loss with a chance of a potential rematch against Michigan after the home loss. But probably not as the No. 3 team, as the ESPN rankings suggest.
2. Alabama. Despite pleas from Nick Saban on national TV for the committee to pick up the Crimson Tide, it doesn’t look likely after losing two games this year, but ESPN still favors this team with an estimated 26.1 points per game, hence this one ranking.
1. Georgia. The consensus top team in college football is up 13-0 for the first time ever and went into the playoffs as favorites to win everything for the second straight year.
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