Week 3 Network Ranking

by Patrick Rhamey

At the end of week 3, all FBS teams are connected by at least one win or loss (illustration below).

As a reminder, this ranking evaluates the relative quality of total combined wins less the impact of losses, resulting in a ranking of “total body of work”. It is not, on its own, predictive. So, the greatest team in college football might be an Alabama, a Georgia, or an LSU, but their total value of wins doesn’t do enough to provide evidence of such because they have not defeated teams who also have good wins. LSU is toward the top with its defeat of Texas, but defeating Georgia Southern does very little, and Nichols State does nothing at all. Alabama is in a similar situation with South Carolina, Duke, and New Mexico State. The quality of Georgia’s wins are so phenomenally bad that even one loss teams that Eastern Michigan and BYU fair better.

Of course this will all change as we begin to enter conference play and the season continues to evolve, but these early non-conference games provide an important baseline. If Alabama or Georgia is that good, perhaps they shouldn’t schedule so many cupcakes during the first quarter of the season. For now, best total body of work goes to the Gators.

Top 25 (Explanation; Full Ranking)

1) Florida
2) Clemson
3) Auburn
4) Ohio State
5) Utah
6) Minnesota and Wake Forest
8) Arizona State and Kansas State
10) Kentucky and California
12) Alabama, Iowa, and SMU
15) LSU and UCF
16) Wyoming
17) Boise State, Michigan, and Virginia
21) Memphis and Notre Dame
23) Eastern Michigan
24) Air Force
25) BYU