NCAAF Power Rankings: Week 1

By Jesse Schule - Covers Expert

The defending champion Ohio State Buckeyes begin the college football season atop the Power Rankings and look poised for a return to the playoffs.

NCAAF Power Rankings

Rank Last Week Change Team W-L-T (ATS) Power Rating Team Comments
1 same 0-0-0
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-25 Ohio State
The defending champions are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball, returning 15 starters including all three quarterbacks from last year. Ezekiel Elliot is back after running for 1878 yards and 18 TDs last season. A return to the college football playoffs looks almost inevitable for the Buckeyes.
2 same 0-0-0
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-24.5 Oregon
The Ducks went all the way to the championship game last season, but came up just short. It won't be easy to replace Marcus Mariota, but Vernon Adams looks like he could be a perfect fit for this team. The senior threw for over 10,000 yards and 110 TDs at Eastern Washington.
3 same 0-0-0
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-24 Baylor
The Bears will have to replace Bryce Petty, but backup Seth Russell was sharp when called upon last season. He inherits an offense that has led the nation in scoring for the last two year, and Baylor returns 20 starters in 2015. An improved defense could make Baylor a legitimate championship contender.
4 same 0-0-0
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-23.5 Auburn
The Tigers will have to replace Nick Marshall at quarterback, but their offense should be in good shape with Jeremy Johnson who looked quite sharp as a backup the last two seasons. The big news is the return of Will Muschamp as defensive coordinator, who will have plenty of talent to work with.
5 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-22 Alabama
It's the first time in a long time that Alabama isn't considered a favorite, but the Crimson Tide have to replace a long list of key contributors. They lose their starting quarterback, their top running back, and No. 1-wideout Amari Cooper. They still have a proven star in the backfield in Derrick Henry, and their defensive line ranks among the best in the nation.
6 same 0-0-0
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-21.5 Texas Christian
This team still has a chip on it's shoulder, and the Horned Frogs felt they were wrongly left out of the playoff picture last year. They finished in a tie with Baylor at the top of the Big 12, and both teams were passed over allowing Ohio State to slip into the playoffs. Their only loss last season came on the road at Baylor (61-58), and they will have home field advantage in the rematch this season. That being said, they beat Oklahoma and Kansas State at home last year, and this year they have to travel to Norman and Manhattan.
7 same 0-0-0
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-20 Georgia
While they will have a new quarterback, they will have the luxury of handing off the ball to Nick Chubb, who is one of the Heisman favorites heading into the 2015 season. Chubb ran for over 1500 yards and 14 TDs while splitting time with Todd Gurley last season.
8 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-19.5 Michigan State
The Spartans lost two games in 2014, at Oregon and at home to Ohio State. Those two teams played each other in the National Championship game. They should be in good shape for another run in 2015 with quarterback Connor Cook returning for his senior year. Cook threw for 3,214 yards with 24 TDs and 8 INTs last year.
9 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-19 Mississippi
The Rebels won seven straight to start the 2014 season, and one of those victories came at home to Alabama. Things took a turn for the worse when Laquon Treadwell suffered a broken leg, fumbling the ball in the endzone on a play that was originally ruled as a potential game winning TD. The play was reversed, and the Rebels played the rest of their season without their top wideout.
10 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-18.5 Southern California
The Trojans are in good shape offensively with quarterback Cody Kessler back after leading a 2014 squad that averaged over 35 points per game. They will need to see a significant improvement on defense though if they want to be a contender in the Pac 12.
11 same 0-0-0
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-18 Notre Dame
The Irish played Alabama in the National Championship Game in 2012, and this year's squad might be even deeper and more skilled than that team was. A playoff spot won't come easy though, as they will likely need to run the table to get any serious consideration.
12 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-17.5 Florida State
The Seminoles will have to replace Jamies Winston, but star running back Dalvin Cook has been cleared to play after clearing up his legal trouble. Prior to losing to Oregon in last year's Rose Bowl, this team had won 29 in a row. They are still considered the team to beat in the ACC.
13 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-17 Clemson
The Tigers will go as far as quarterback Deshaun Watson can take them in 2015, and they could have a chance to win the ACC if he can stay healthy. He threw for 1,466 yards with 14 TDs and just two INTs in five starts last year, and when he went down with a knee in jury the offense suffered tremendously.
14 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-16.5 Louisiana State
The Tigers are as talented as any team in the country, but without a proven quarterback they have been unable to compete with the elite teams in the SEC in recent seasons. With Brandon Harris and Anthony Jennings battling for the starting job, it looks like the quarterback position is destined to be a weakness for LSU again in 2015.
15 same 0-0-0
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-16 UCLA
With Brett Hundley moving on to the NFL, the Bruins will turn to freshman Josh Rosen to lead the offense. He's surrounded by plenty of talent with all five starters returning on the offensive line, and last year's Pac 12 leading rusher in the backfield.
16 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-15.5 Oklahoma
The Sooners came in to last season as many people's favorite to win it all, but quarterback Trevor Knight failed to live up to expectations, and they ended up finishing with four losses. Baylor and TCU are getting all the hype this year, but I think it would be naive to overlook Oklahoma as a contender in the Big 12. Samaje Perine returns after running for over 1700 yards and 21 TDs last year, and they have a new quarterback in Baker Mayfield.
17 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-15 Arizona State
Todd Graham has led this team to 20 wins over the last two seasons, and they are expected to be a contender in the Pac 12 again this year. They have a tough schedule though, and they start off the season in Houston against Texas A&M.
18 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-14.5 Arkansas
Bret Bielema's team finished last year strong, winning four of their final six games. They bring back quarterback Brandon Allen who threw for 2,285 yards and 20 TDs last year, with just five interceptions. They were also the only FBS team with two 1,000 yard rushers (Johnathan Williams and Alex Collins).
19 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-14 Georgia Tech
The Yellow Jackets went to the ACC Championship game last season, coming up just short in a loss to Florida State. A tough schedule could prevent them from achieving similar success this year, as they have tough road games at Clemson and Notre Dame, and a date with Georgia in their final game won't be easy.
20 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-13.5 Arizona
With all the good teams in the Pac 12, it was Arizona that played Oregon in the Conference Championship game last year. Scooby Wright was the Pac 12 Defensive Player of the Year with 163 tackles, 29 tackles for a loss and 14 sacks in 2014.
21 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-13 Wisconsin
The Badgers will hope that junior Corey Clement can replace Heisman runner up Melvin Gordon in the back field. They will need to get better quarterback play from Joel Stave, who enters his fifth year. He completed just 53 percent of his passes, throwing more picks than touchdowns last season.
22 same 0-0-0
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-12.5 Stanford
2014 was an off year for the Cardinal, who went 8-5, losing three games by three points. They will have plenty of experience at quarterback with Kevin Hogan returning for his final season, and if Oregon takes a step back it could open the door for Stanford in the Pac 12 North.
23 same 0-0-0
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-12 Boise State
The Broncos are bringing back 17 starters from a 2014 squad that won 12 games, and they are the favorite to repeat as Mountain West Champions. They have a tough schedule though, opening the season at home against Washington, and playing BYU at Provo in Week 2.
24 same 0-0-0
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-11.5 Tennessee
The Vols return 17 starters in 2015, and have one of the nation's most talented squads. They are still young though, and it could be asking too much for Tennessee to compete with elite SEC teams like Alabama and Auburn.
25 same 0-0-0
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-11 Texas A&M
The Aggies replaced quarterback Kenny Hill halfway through last season, and Kyle Allen stepped right up to the plate. The sophomore threw for 277 yards with four TDs in an upset win at Auburn last year. He could put up ridiculous numbers this year in this quarterback friendly system under Kevin Sumlin.
26 same 0-0-0
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-9.75 Missouri
27 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-9.5 Virginia Tech
28 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-9 Mississippi State
29 same 0-0-0
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-8.75 Louisville
30 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-8.5 Brigham Young
31 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-8.25 Penn State
32 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-8 Oklahoma State
33 same 0-0-0
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-7.7 Nebraska
34 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-7.5 Utah
35 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-7.4 Miami
36 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-7.2 Minnesota
37 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-7 Kansas State
38 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-6.9 Cincinnati
39 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-6.7 Texas
40 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-6.5 Utah State
41 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-6.3 Marshall
42 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-6 Duke
43 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.5 North Carolina
44 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.5 West Virginia
45 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-5.3 North Carolina State
46 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-5 Florida
47 same 0-0-0
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-4.7 Michigan
48 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-4.5 Kentucky
49 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-4.2 Northern Illinois
50 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
-4 South Carolina
51 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Air Force
52 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Akron
53 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Appalachian State
54 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Arkansas State
55 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Army
56 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Ball State
57 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Boston College
58 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Bowling Green
59 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Buffalo
60 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 California
61 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Central Florida
62 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Central Michigan
63 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Charlotte
64 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Colorado
65 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Colorado State
66 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Connecticut
67 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 East Carolina
68 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Eastern Michigan
69 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Florida Atlantic
70 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Florida International
71 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Fresno State
72 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Georgia Southern
73 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Georgia State
74 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Hawaii
75 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Houston
76 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Idaho
77 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Illinois
78 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Indiana
79 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Iowa
80 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Iowa State
81 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Kansas
82 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Kent State
83 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Louisiana Tech
84 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Maryland
85 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Massachusetts
86 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Memphis
87 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Miami (Ohio)
88 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Middle Tennessee
89 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Navy
90 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Nevada
91 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 New Mexico
92 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 New Mexico State
93 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 North Texas
94 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Northwestern
95 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Ohio
96 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Old Dominion
97 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Oregon State
98 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Pittsburgh
99 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Purdue
100 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Rice
101 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Rutgers
102 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 San Diego State
103 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 San Jose State
104 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 South Alabama
105 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 South Florida
106 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Southern Methodist
107 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Southern Mississippi
108 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Syracuse
109 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Temple
110 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Texas El Paso
111 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Texas State
112 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Texas Tech
113 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Texas-San Antonio
114 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Toledo
115 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Troy
116 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Tulane
117 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Tulsa
118 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 UL Lafayette
119 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 UL Monroe
120 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 UNLV
121 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Vanderbilt
122 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Virginia
123 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Wake Forest
124 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Washington
125 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Washington State
126 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Western Kentucky
127 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Western Michigan
128 same 0-0-0
(0-0-0)
0 Wyoming

Power Ratings compute offensive and defensive statistics into one number for each team, while accounting for factors like recent performances and strength of schedule. Power Ratings can be used as a baseline for relative spread index to compare current or future match-ups between two teams. The relative spread does not account for non-statistical factors like home-field advantage, recent injuries, game time decisions, rivalries, publicity, and weather.