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BYU maintains its position in the College Football Playoff rankings, while Utah rises

The Cougars are the No. 14 ranked team in the country, while the Utes rose to No. 23.

Utah Utes safety Brandon McKinney and Utah Utes linebacker Hayden Furey try to get to Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jaren Hall.
Utah Utes safety Brandon McKinney (28) and Utah Utes linebacker Hayden Furey (54) try to get to Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jaren Hall (3) as BYU and Utah play an NCAA football game at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021. BYU won 26-17, ending a nine-game losing streak to the Utes.
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

The College Football Playoff committee continues to be impressed by BYU and Utah.

Both the Cougars and Utes are in the latest CFP rankings, released Tuesday night. BYU has now been in the rankings every week this season, while Utah has found a place in back-to-back weeks.

BYU, idle this past weekend, stayed at No. 14. Utah, after a closer-than-expected win over Arizona, rose one spot to No. 23.

The Cougars were ranked No. 14 in The Associated Press poll and No. 15 in the coaches poll on Sunday, while the Utes were ranked No. 24 in the AP poll and No. 25 in the coaches poll.

BYU, 8-2 overall, has won three consecutive games and will face Georgia Southern this upcoming weekend. The Cougars have wins over six Power Five teams this year — No. 23 Utah, Arizona State, Arizona, Washington State and Virginia — with losses to Boise State and No. 11 Baylor.

Utah has won six of its last seven games, the latest a 38-29 win over Arizona. The Utes are 7-3 overall, 6-1 in Pac-12 play, and are the favorite to win the Pac-12 South Division and play for a Pac-12 championship.

Utah’s three losses came against No. 14 BYU, No. 19 San Diego State and Oregon State.

Oregon, the top ranked team in the Pac-12 and North Division favorite, is ranked No. 3, and if the College Football Playoff were today the Ducks would be playing in the playoffs against No. 2 Alabama. The Ducks have one of the more impressive wins of the season, on the road against No. 4 Ohio State.

Georgia, Alabama, Oregon, Ohio State, Cincinnati and Michigan make up the top six in this week’s rankings, unchanged from the previous week.

Notable drops from the rankings include Auburn and Purdue, who fell out after being ranked No. 17 and No. 19, respectively. No. 24 Houston made its debut in the rankings, while No. 25 Mississippi State reentered.

College Football Playoff Rankings (Nov. 16)

  1. Georgia (10-0)
  2. Alabama (9-1)
  3. Oregon (9-1)
  4. Ohio State (9-1)
  5. Cincinnati (10-0)
  6. Michigan (9-1)
  7. Michigan State (9-1)
  8. Notre Dame (9-1)
  9. Oklahoma State (9-1)
  10. Wake Forest (9-1)
  11. Baylor (8-2)
  12. Ole Miss (8-2)
  13. Oklahoma (9-1)
  14. BYU (8-2)
  15. Wisconsin (7-3)
  16. Texas A&M (7-3)
  17. Iowa (8-2)
  18. Pittsburgh (8-2)
  19. San Diego State (9-1)
  20. NC State (7-3)
  21. Arkansas (7-3)
  22. UTSA (10-0)
  23. Utah (7-3)
  24. Houston (9-1)
  25. Mississippi State (6-4)