It’s time to put some respect back on Washington’s name.

The Huskies are undefeated and have the best win in the country, based on these rankings, but they have continually sat outside the top four of the College Football Playoff selection committee’s in-season rankings. That needs to change this week. After pulling out a 22-20 win against Oregon State on a rainy night in Corvallis, Washington has the most impressive resume in the country. The Huskies move up to No. 2 in this week’s Athletic 133.

Washington has wins over Oregon, Arizona, Utah, Oregon State and USC. Nobody can match that many good victories. Yes, the Huskies needed a pick six and a questionable penalty to escape Arizona State and played Stanford close, but no team blows everyone out every single week.

Quarterback Michael Penix Jr. struggled at times against the Beaver defense, completing 13 of 28 passes, but he was responsible for all three touchdowns in a difficult environment, and he came up with a clutch third-down completion to Rome Odunze to seal a game which Washington entered as a betting underdog.

Georgia continues to look like the best team in the country and is getting better every week, but everyone else looks beatable, including Washington. Perhaps Oregon will be favored if the Ducks and Huskies meet again in the Pac-12 championship game, but that’s for another time. Right now, Washington deserves to not only be in the top four but higher than fourth.

Here is this week’s Athletic 133.

1-10

Other than Washington moving up, the only change in the top 10 is Missouri moving in after beating Florida to move to 9-2.

We’ve never seen a season in the CFP era with five 11-0 Power 5 teams. In theory, the situation could work itself out easily, with Georgia, Washington, Florida State and the Michigan/Ohio State winner making the top four. But the devastating leg injury to Florida State quarterback Jordan Travis could upend that possibility and create some difficult CFP conversations about the ‘Noles. They’ll play Louisville in the ACC championship game, which could be a top-10 matchup.

11-25

Penn State’s wins over Iowa and West Virginia have looked better as the season has played out, and the Nittany Lions move up to No. 12, behind Ole Miss because of the Rebels’ wins against LSU and Tulane. Oklahoma drops to No. 14 after escaping BYU. Oregon State drops to No. 16 after its loss, falling just behind Arizona, which demolished Utah 42-18 and beat the Beavers in October. James Madison’s undefeated run is over, but the Dukes don’t fall out of the top 25 because it was an overtime loss and JMU still has a good win against Troy. JMU’s full bowl eligibility waiver was denied, so No. 20 Tulane is in the leading position for the New Year’s Six spot, but the Green Wave play UTSA this week before a potential AAC championship game where they could see No. 26 SMU, which just won at Memphis.

Toledo is 10-1 and also in that NY6 mix after a late win against Bowling Green; the Rockets also move into the top 25. Iowa landing at No. 16 in last week’s CFP rankings was surprising, especially because it was unranked in the AP Poll. They’re No. 24 here this week. The Hawkeyes don’t have a victory over a team with more than six wins and were blown out by Penn State. Their defense is elite, but Iowa has escaped several .500 Big Ten West teams in recent weeks. They’re ahead of Toledo because the Rockets lost to Illinois in Week 1 and Iowa beat the Illini.

26-50

Rank Team Record Prev

26

9-2

31

27

7-4

16

28

7-4

25

29

9-2

29

30

7-4

38

31

8-3

20

32

9-2

36

33

7-4

28

34

7-4

46

35

7-5

33

36

8-3

43

37

9-3

60

38

6-5

37

39

7-4

39

40

6-5

32

41

9-2

44

42

7-4

47

43

8-3

55

44

7-4

61

45

6-5

48

46

6-5

40

47

8-3

42

48

8-3

35

49

8-3

45

50

6-5

41

Clemson climbs to No. 30 after beating North Carolina. UNLV is up to No. 32 after coming back to beat Air Force. UCLA’s comfortable win over USC moves the Bruins up to No. 34 and USC down to No. 35. I continue to have no idea why Tennessee, No. 33 here, is ranked in the polls.

Miami’s one-score loss to Louisville sees the Hurricanes only slide to No. 38 and stay ahead of Texas A&M due to their head-to-head result. Duke continues to slide, now down to No. 40 after a loss to Virginia. Wyoming bounces back up to No. 43, aided by its early-season win against Texas Tech, which beat UCF to get to bowl eligibility.

New Mexico State’s 31-10 win at Auburn to move to 9-3 sees the Aggies jump up to No. 37. The Fightin’ Jerry Kills have won seven consecutive games, overcoming early losses to UMass and Hawaii that make them a bizarre team to place.

51-75

Kentucky and Florida fall out of the top 50 after losses to South Carolina and Missouri, respectively. Georgia Tech is up to No. 54 after beating Syracuse to become bowl-eligible. Maryland only slides two spots to No. 55 after playing Michigan close. Appalachian State’s overtime win at James Madison sees the Mountaineers move up to No. 62.

Wisconsin got back on track with an overtime win against Nebraska to move up to No. 66. Twelve teams in this group of 25 need a win this weekend to get to a bowl game.

76-100

In the Week 3 edition of these rankings, Colorado was No. 14 and Arkansas State was dead last at No. 133. Now, they’re next to each other. Colorado has lost six of seven, including a 56-14 pounding at the hands of Washington State on Friday night, to fall to No. 77. Arkansas State dropped 77 points on Texas State to get bowl-eligible and move up to No. 78.

No. 83 Virginia and No. 84 Michigan State won’t be going to a bowl game, but they picked up conference wins over the weekend. Georgia Southern’s loss to Old Dominion and Georgia State’s loss to LSU see the Sun Belt rivals drop to No. 85 and 86, respectively. It’s been an odd season for No. 89 Army, which has wins against UTSA, Air Force and Coastal Carolina but losses to UMass and Louisiana-Monroe. The Black Knights are the toughest team to rank and only have Navy left.

101-133

Navy’s bounceback season continues, now 5-5 and up to No. 107 after beating East Carolina. New Mexico beat Fresno State and moves up to No. 111. Sam Houston continues to battle, leading Western Kentucky in the fourth quarter before losing. The Bearkats move up to No. 127 as a result. Kent State lost 34-3 to Ball State and remains at No. 133 as the only one-win team in FBS.

The Athletic 133 Rankings series is part of a partnership with AllState.

The Athletic maintains full editorial independence. Partners have no control over or input into the reporting or editing process and do not review stories before publication.

(Photo: Tom Hauck / Getty Images)


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