College Football Power Rankings: Jayhawks Play Football, Too

The 5-0 Kansas Jayhawks are arguably the most surprising story of the college football season through five weeks. While their schedule is about to get very difficult, their early success can't be ignored in Andrew Caley's latest power rankings.

Last Updated: Oct 4, 2022 8:24 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Kansas Jayhawks College Football NCAA
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Week 5 of the college football season was an interesting one, to say the least. While the big boys at the top took care of business, there was a huge shakeup in the middle tier resulting in six new teams in the latest edition of my power rankings.

UCLA, TCU, and believe it or not, Kansas (yes, the football team) are still undefeated and the Jayhawks are making their season debut in the rankings.

Meanwhile, Wake Forest quarterback Sam Hartman might be the story of the college football season. He has the Demon Deacons playing some really good football at the moment.

Here are my Top 25 power rankings heading into Week 6 of the season and maybe some betting value in the college football futures market.

Andrew Caley's college football power rankings

Rank (Last week) Team AP Rank National Title Odds
1 (1, -) Ohio State 3 +200
2 (3, ↑ 1) Alabama 1 +220
3 (2, ↓ 1) Georgia 2 +210
4 (4, -) Michigan 4 +2,000
5 (5, -) USC 6 +1,600
6 (6, -) Clemson 5 +1,200
7 (7, -) Mississippi 9 +8,000
8 (8, -) Penn State 10 +8,000
9 (9, -) Tennessee 8 +6,000
10 (12, ↑ 2) Utah 11 +5,000
11 (14, ↑ 3) Oklahoma State 7 +6,000
12 (16, ↑ 4) Oregon 12 +8,000
13 (10, ↓ 3) Kentucky 13 +30,000
14 (21, ↑ 7) Wake Forest 15 +30,000
15 (NR) UCLA 18 +10,000
16 (NR) TCU 17 +10,000
17 (15, ↓ 2) NC State 14 +30,000
18 (23, ↑ 5) Syracuse 22 +30,000
19 (25, ↑ 6) Kansas State 20 +20,000
20 (11, ↓ 9) Washington 21 +20,000
21 (NR) Mississippi State 23 +20,000
22 (13, ↓9) Baylor NR +40,000
23 (NR) Kansas 19 +20,000
24 (NR) Maryland NR +50,000
25 (NR) Washington State NR +50,000

Dropped out: Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Arkansas, FSU, Pittsburgh

Odds courtesy of DraftKings. Compare updated national championship futures before betting to ensure you get the best number.

Dangerous Deacs: Wake Forest (14)

As I said, Sam Hartman might be the story of the college football season. The Wake Forest quarterback was diagnosed with a blood clot issue in summer camp, and it was unknown when — or if — he would return to the field. But after a couple of procedures, he was cleared to play and ended up missing just one game. 

Hartman has been outstanding since his return, throwing for 1,196 yards and 15 touchdowns compared to just two interceptions. He nearly led the Demon Deacons to a huge upset over Clemson two weeks ago. The Deacs could have easily been in for a letdown this week visiting an undefeated Florida State team, but Hartman led his team to a big victory and earned Wake Forest the biggest bump up my power rankings this week.

The Deacs' fate in the ACC is no longer in their own hands with the loss to Clemson but they can keep the pressure on the Tigers if they continue their strong play and could up being a strong bet on a game-to-game basis this season. 

Bear down, literally: Baylor (22)

Baylor dug itself a big hole against Oklahoma State last week and was just never able to climb out of it. The loss was the second of the season for the Bears and resulted in them having the biggest tumble down my rankings this week.

And while the reigning conference champions are not out of the Big 12 picture yet, the Bears really can’t afford any more slip-ups. But it's not like the schedule gets much easier for Baylor. A matchup against Kansas in a couple of weeks is, perhaps surprisingly, much more daunting. Then there are still trips to Norman and Austin and home dates with resurgent Kansas State and TCU.

Taking flight: Kansas (23)

Texas, Florida State, Notre Dame, and Texas A&M. These are all teams that have worse odds to win the CFP National Championship than the Kansas Jayhawks.

Simply put, the job Lance Leipold has done in Kansas has been incredible. This is a Jayhawks team that entered the season with a win total of 2.5. They surpassed that on Sept. 17, are a perfect 5-0, and are now ranked in the Top 25. 

People have been so impressed with Leipold that he has already been linked to the Big Ten openings at Nebraska and Wisconsin. 

For now, his focus remains on Kansas. Suddenly, a matchup this weekend with TCU is massive. And actually, the Jayhawks run a gauntlet of a schedule in the Big 12. Following that game against the Horned Frogs, they still have Oklahoma, Baylor, Oklahoma State, Texas, and Kansas State on the schedule.

This magical Kansas run may not be here for a long time, but it sure has been a good time.

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