After beating TCU by just one point – even though the Horned Frogs were playing without quarterback Trevone Boykin and wide receiver Josh Doctson – Oklahoma went from No. 7 to No. 3 in the College Football Playoff rankings Tuesday. The Sooners jumped No. 4 Iowa, No. 5 Michigan State and No. 6 Notre Dame, all of which won this past weekend.
“I don’t know if I want to say a shock, but if we’re on a 1-to-10 scale, we’re talking about a 6.5, maybe a 7 there,” CBSSports.com college football analyst Jerry Hinnen told Paul Nanos, who was filling in as host of CBS Sports Radio’s After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “Oklahoma, to me, they definitely have a great win over Baylor, a decent win over TCU. It’s a team that’s playing without Trevone Boykin, without Josh Doctson, and that game still came down to the last seconds. So I wonder if that (win is) maybe not quite as good as the committee is giving them credit for. But the main thing with Oklahoma for me is that loss against Texas.
“Texas is not a good team. They’re not guaranteed to even go to bowl game and they pretty much whipped Oklahoma’s butt that day. Oklahoma was clearly the second-best team. They’ve been a much better team since that game, but we’re talking about a body of work – and that body of work includes that ugly loss to Texas. I don’t understand how Notre Dame, who has a loss only by two points at Clemson, the No. 1 team in the country and has beaten several other good teams – Temple, Navy, Pitt, USC. I don’t really get how Oklahoma is No. 3 with their loss and Notre Dame is at No. 6 with their loss.”
Hinnen doesn’t see Notre Dame overtaking Oklahoma, but he still believes the Irish will get in.
“If they beat Stanford and Stanford goes on to win the Pac-12, they would be next in the pecking order if somebody above them happens to be upset,” Hinnen said. “I think they’re going to be okay. Stanford has been a weird team. They’ve had times when their offense has gotten kind of bogged down. Notre Dame has been a pretty doggone good team on the road. They took Clemson to the wire, they went out and beat a Temple team that I think is pretty good. They’ve had all the injuries and (Brian) Kelly has kine of pulled it together. They’re still right there. I actually like the Irish to pull the mild upset there.”
As for Ohio State? Hinnen remains unimpressed.
“They’re overrated now,” Hinnen said. “No. 8 in these rankings does not make any sense to me. They were awesome last year. What they did was amazing. That’s great. This year, they haven’t beaten anyone better than Penn State. Beating Michigan would be the first sign of life from Ohio State all season.”