It's hard to believe, but we're nearing the halfway mark of the 2019 college football season. The field for the College Football Playoff will be announced on Dec. 8, and five weeks of action is more than plenty to begin to assess the favorites and contenders.
Sure, some teams are practically guaranteed to rise and nose-dive by then, but we have a good idea of who will be there when all is said and done.
It's virtually impossible to not include a squad that has outscored their opponents 267-95 through five weeks. If you said that is the product of the Sooners' schedule, you'd be absolutely right. But, a brief eye test is all you need to come to terms with the fact that Oklahoma has looked like one of the best teams in the nation thus far. Lincoln Riley and Jalen Hurts have been as good as advertised and there's no reason to believe that won't continue in the second half of the campaign.
Nick Saban's squad, as expected, has looked the part to this point in the campaign. What we can't defend about the Crimson Tide, however, is their cupcake schedule, and that sees them land at No. 3 in the rankings. What does this tell us? That their annual clashes against the likes of LSU and Auburn will prove ever-imperative down the stretch if they want to clinch a spot in the CFB Playoff, assuming they don't collapse against an unranked foe, of course.
Yes, Clemson deserves to be coined No. 2 at this stage, but they will absolutely take a minor stumble in the rankings if they don't show out in Week 6 against Florida State following their bye this weekend. They escaped a markedly inferior North Carolina squad in Chapel Hill last Saturday and Dabo Swinney's men have some work to do to restore faith in the selection committee that they are the nation's best team.
1. Ohio State
A popular opinion materializing in recent weeks is the notion that Ohio State might just be the best team in the nation. Through five weeks of action, whose to say that they aren't? The Buckeyes utterly demolished Nebraska in primetime last weekend and are fresh off thumping No. 25 Michigan State 34-10 on Saturday. There really was no other choice for the No. 1 spot, though they will need to keep pressing the issue as their schedule beefs up significantly down the stretch.