ESPN predicts where Alabama will be in initial CFP rankings

The initial top 25 College Football Playoff rankings will be released on Tuesday and the Crimson Tide is expected to be in the top 10, but not necessarily near the top four. Before Crimson Tide fans get upset, it’s important to remember that the only CFP ranking that matters is the last one.

ESPN recently revealed its College Football Playoff ranking projections (subscription required) and the Crimson Tide sit at No. 8, just behind No. 7 Texas and one spot ahead of No. 9 Oklahoma.

College football analyst Heather Dinich put together the rankings and explained why each team was situated where they are. Dinich also shared reasons why they may be higher or lower in the actual rankings.

Why they could be higher

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

“It’s hard to imagine the committee disregarding the head-to-head game with Texas, especially considering the loss was in Tuscaloosa and both teams have continued to win and look good,” writes Dinich. “If the Tide were to move up, though, it would be because of its schedule strength. The Tide have two wins against likely CFP top-25 teams Ole Miss and Tennessee, which both won again Saturday. Alabama played arguably its best half of football all season in the second half of its win against the Vols, against whom it scored 27 unanswered points. With the exception of Arkansas (2-6), all of Alabama’s SEC opponents are above .500, and they have a combined record of 22-9, which is far better than Texas’ Big 12 wins and even some of the undefeated contenders’ résumés.”

Dinich makes many strong points, but the best one is the strength of the schedule argument. Alabama has one loss against another top-10 team and has managed to convincingly win many games against other quality, ranked opponents.

Why they could be lower

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