College Football’s New Playoff Rankings -- But What Really Changed?



It’s safe to say that the College Football Playoff committee folks really didn’t have much of a choice – they weren’t gonna drop the likes of Clemson, Michigan and Washington (last week’s #2, #3 and #4 teams in the rankings) all that far despite the fact all of the above lost games last weekend:

So, as we forecast in yesterday’s edition of Jim Sez, the only “loser” that felt the sting of the committee’s wrath was Washington which has been persona non grata anyway because of that lackluster non-league schedule and even the UW Huskies “only” dropped two spots to #6.

In case you didn’t see it, here’s the #1-thru-#6 teams in the land and note all of ‘em – save for #1 Alabama – have a loss on their records now while heading into play this November weekend:

#1 Alabama (10-0); #2 Ohio State (9-1); #3 Michigan (9-1); #4 Clemson (9-1); #5 Louisville (9-1); and #6 Washington (9-1).

Folks, we’ll say it till we’re blue in the face … there’s no way a two-loss team makes it into this four-team playoff field come New Year’s Eve and so keep a watch on #14 West Virginia (8-1) which could zoom up the ranks this weekend with a home win against Oklahoma and a potential Big 12 title.

Not gonna see two Big 10 teams in the playoffs; not gonna see two ACC teams in the playoffs.

Let the know-nothing ESPN crew blabber on (and can the all-sports network just get us to the standings and stop all the pre-announcement hype already!) but we’re headed to a quartet of conference champs getting in … that’s our story and we’re sticking to it!

Ladies and gents …
My handicappers and bloggers have everything all mapped out and you can get the NFL Week 11 Side & Totals winners beginning with Thursday’s game between the New Orleans Saints at the Carolina Panthers when you check with us here at the red-hot Jim Hurley’s Network and then keep rollin’ in the green all week/weekend long with all the NCAA Football, the NFL, the NBA and NCAA Basketball too!

Last weekend we knocked ‘em dead with a bunch of football winners – there was the Best Bet 3-Star Winner with USC (+ 8.5) outright over nationally-ranked Washington 26-13 along with 2-Star College winners on Penn State (- 7) over Indiana and Colorado State (+ 6) over Air Force. Our NFL Week 10 weekend featured such winners as our 3-Star winner on the Philadelphia Eagles( -1) over the Atlanta Falcons, 24-15, to go along with 2-Star Jim Hurley Network Winners on Tennessee (+ 3) over Green Bay and Kansas City (+ 3) over Carolina. Take note that last week’s College and NFL games produced a slick 18-7-1 mark (that’s 72 percent winners) with a profitable 4-1 mark in “totals” plays.

Check with us on game days either here online or at our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 – pile up the profits this November!


We’re back with the latest Installment of the 2016 Heisman Trophy Watch List where we offer up our top five weekly contenders for college football’s most coveted individual award … now here’s how we see things shaping up as we get set to head into another big-time gridiron week/weekend.

LAMAR JACKSON, QB, Louisville – Okay, so last week’s slow-starting 44-12 non-cover win against Wake Forest wasn’t his “finest hour” as the ‘Ville mega-star threw for a season-low 145 passing yards but he still finished with 153 yards rushing and the year-to-date figures now includes 2,898 passing yards/1,334 yards rushing with a combined 46 TDs. Still, the runaway leader with just a couple of weeks to go.

DESHAUN WATSON, QB, Clemson – Contrary to everyone else’s Heisman lists, we’ve bumped up this Tigers’ superstar (we had ‘em third for the past three weeks) to the #2 spot following last week’s 43-42 heartbreak loss to 22-point pup Pittsburgh. Hey, Watson did throw that one goal-line pick but did you check out his stats? A school-record 580 yards passing with 3 TDs and so Watson enters Saturday’s game versus Wake Forest with 3,077 yards passing and 27 TDs.

DONNEL PUMPHREY, RB, San Diego State – We’ve had this Aztecs’ star “bringing up the rear” of our Jim Sez Heisman Top 5 but time to bump ‘em up to the third spot this week following on the heels of his 198-yard rushing game in SDSU’s 46-16 win/cover at Nevada. Pumphrey’s rushed for 1,779 yards with 14 TDs (and a 6.6 ypc average) and he’s gonna get a whole lot of the West Coast votes now that Washington QB Jake Browning’s been knocked from the Heisman upper crust.

JALEN HURTS, QB, Alabama – Welcome back to the Heisman Watch List, kid! This ‘Bama frosh threw for 347 yards with four TDs in last week’s 51-3 wood-shed job win against Miss State. The Hurts numbers: 2,032 yards passing with 16 TDs to go along with 735 rushing yards and 11 scores for the numero uno team in the land.

LUKE FALK, QB, Washington State – Hey, Browning may be out of our top five (for now) but another state-of-Washington slinger is in as this 6-foot-4 junior enters Saturday’s game at Colorado with an eye-popping 3,610 yards passing with 33 TDs.


On Thursday, it’s …

NEW ORLEANS (4-5) at CAROLINA (3-6) – 8:25 p.m. ET, NBC/NFL Network

Talk about your post-Super Bowl hangovers!

Maybe no team in recent NFL memory has suffered through a tougher post-Super Bowl campaign than these Carolina Panthers who just so happened to have lost four games by three points or less including last Sunday’s bitter 20-17 home setback against Kansas City. Yes, the Panthers sported a 17-0 second-quarter lead but Ron Rivera’s crew self-destructed (again!) and now banged-around QB Cam Newton (261 yards passing and 54 yards rushing last week) has the dreaded short week to get ready for a Saints’ bunch that’s lost three games by three points or less … hey, if a blocked PAT goes back for two points for either side here than we’ll really have a story, eh?

Spread Notes – Carolina is 2-6-1 ATS (against the spread) this year after compiling a wowie 13-6 spread mark a year ago. On the flip side, New Orleans is 5-3-1 ATS overall this year and did you know the Saints have covered six of their last eight NFC South games dating back to the start of last season?

In other NFL Week 11 News/Notes …

Lots of handicappers ‘round the country well aware of the fact the Dallas Cowboys have covered a whopping eight consecutive games but how about “recognizing” a couple of teams heading in the opposite spread direction:

The Cleveland Browns – surprise, surprise – have lost their last four consecutive pointspread verdicts while heading into Sunday’s home game versus Pittsburgh;

The Minnesota Vikings also have dropped four straight spread decisions (three of ‘em while in the favorite’s role) and now we’re seeing Pick ‘Em this weekend against visiting Arizona;

And the Pittsburgh Steelers are on a four-game ATS losing skid too with Mike Tomlin’s crew having failed to cover Miami, New England, Baltimore and Dallas the past month-plus.


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