Tennessee entered the Missouri game with the No. 5 AP Top 25 and coaches poll ranking. Coming out of the weekend, all five teams in the AP Top 5 won their Saturday matchup.
The Volunteers hold steady as the No. 5 ranking in the AP Poll and coaches poll heading into Week 12.
With only South Carolina (6-4, 3-4 SEC) and Vanderbilt (4-6, 1-5 SEC) left on the schedule, Tennessee won’t necessarily have a marquee win for the rest of the regular season. That means that Tennessee will need a little bit of help from someone in the Top 4.
That looked to be, potentially, TCU last Saturday night as the Horned Frogs were caught in a tough road battle against then-No. 18 Texas. However, TCU pulled off the victory, confidently setting its sights on the Big 12 title game.
Fortunately for Tennessee, though, two of the current top-four teams still have to play each other in the final game of the season. That would be No. 2 Ohio State and No. 3 Michigan. Tennessee’s most-likely route into the final four for the playoffs will be by observing a Michigan loss. It feels like there would be a little more conversation to be had if Michigan beats Ohio State, therefore comparing the Buckeyes and Volunteers for that (likely) final spot.
All of that is also assuming that TCU wins the Big 12 title and Georgia wins the SEC title.
While the playoff picture does get a little more clear by the week, there is still a lot of chaos left on the table for the close of the 2022 college football regular season.
The Week 12 College Football Playoff rankings will come out Tuesday night on ESPN.
AP Top 5/Coaches Poll Top 5
- Georgia Bulldogs (1574 AP points, 1572 Coaches points)
- Ohio State Buckeyes (1501, 1509)
- Michigan Wolverines (1453, 1445)
- TCU Horned Frogs (1374, 1377)
- Tennessee Volunteers (1341, 1332)
The AP poll has 6-8 as LSU, Southern California, and Alabama, meanwhile, the coaches poll has Southern Cal, LSU, and then Alabama.