Michigan State projection for College Football Playoff rankings

Can Michigan State make one final push in the College Football Playoff rankings? It depends more on other teams than it does the Spartans.

Michigan State (9-3, 7-2 Big Ten), which currently ranks 16th, didn’t have much to prove against Rutgers on Saturday. And though the Spartans won that game 40-7, nearly matching the 35-point margin of their six other Big Ten wins combined, it doesn’t merit much upward mobility on its own.

With the losses of several teams above Michigan State in the rankings, the Spartans may be due for a bump — but that could also be nullified by big wins from teams below them. No. 13 Washington State lost, but it fell to No. 17 Washington. No. 14 Mississippi State lost, but No. 21 Stanford beat No. 8 Notre Dame.

That considered, the Spartans could very well remain right where they have stood for a week. And that’s just fine. Considering this group had been outscored on the year before the final two games of the regular season, a No. 16 ranking has to be satisfying.

And the most important part of the rankings will be where Michigan State stands relative to others in the Big Ten. Any change in that regard would be shocking. Wisconsin, Ohio State and Penn State should all remain above Michigan State after wins, and Northwestern’s win over lowly Illinois should not move the Wildcats up seven spots to pass the Spartans.

So Michigan State will remain in good position to land an Outback Bowl bid, though a Big Ten-free College Football Playoff could relegate them to a lower bowl. For that reason, the Spartans may find themselves rooting for Wisconsin to win the Big Ten championship.

Regardless of where Michigan State goes bowling, it will have a chance to win 10 games a year after winning three. Whether that win comes in Florida or California or anywhere in between, it would count just the same.

The post Michigan State projection for College Football Playoff rankings appeared first on Land of 10.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.