After several weeks of speculation, the College Football Playoff Committee announced their first set of rankings for the 2015 season, and Clemson is number 1. It is the first time the Tigers have been ranked #1 since 1981. Rounding out the top 4 is LSU at #2, Ohio State at #3, and Alabama at #4 with Memphis being the highest ranked Group of 5 school coming in at 13. Clemson would face Alabama in the Orange Bowl while LSU and Ohio State would face off in the Cotton Bowl.
Clemson's ranking brings an added level of scrutiny to this weekend's game against Florida State, a game that could secure the ACC Atlantic Division for Clemson and provide another step towards a playoff berth.
One week later than last year due to one less week in the season, the rankings are designed to give football fans an idea of how the committee views the top 25 teams to date. The top 4 teams in the rankings would go to the College Football Playoff if the season ended today while the rest of the top 25 would be used to determine the the other participants in the group of 6 bowl games.
This year the semifinal games will be played on New Years Eve at the Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl. Based on the rankings above, would be in the Orange Bowl while would be in the Cotton Bowl. The winner of these games would play on January 11th in Phoenix, Arizona.