How Wrong Were the College Football Preseason Rankings?

Everyone knows not to take the preseason rankings too seriously, yet it’s hard not to fall into the mindset of treating the preseason rankings as if they’re “correct” or at least warranted. That number next to the teams can really fool you, because early on, there’s not a whole lot for us to grab on to when it comes to figuring out how good these teams are.

But just how wrong were this year’s preseason rankings?

Well, only 9 of the 25 teams ranked in the preseason poll are currently ranked today, and obviously the big omission was that TCU began the season unranked. But at the top, the preseason polls were pretty accurate. Georgia and Ohio State are in the final four, and they began in the final four to start the year. Michigan moved up to #2, but they only started at 8.

The big misses were clearly TCU and Tennessee, and then Kansas State and Penn State to a lesser extent.

Tennessee went from being unranked in the preseason to being #1 in the country when the initial CFP rankings were released.

So keep this in mind when preseason rankings come out next August, and we all get caught up in them.

More than likely, half the teams in the preseason top-25 will be way out of there by the end of the season. And plenty of teams not even in the rankings will make their way into the rankings eventually.

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