Tennessee and Ohio State are battling for the top spot in the initial top 25

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The first ranking of the top 25 College Football Playoffs begins on Tuesday with a look at how the selection committee considers the best team in the country. Georgia and Alabama were the top two teams last season in the first playoff seeding, followed by Michigan State and Oregon. It wasn’t until the shortened 2020 season that early standings revealed all four teams in the playoffs a few weeks later.

While the first poll is an accurate barometer of where teams stand on the straight, it rarely describes what the semi-final clashes will look like.

When the selection committee last meets in December, the following criteria are considered before the top four teams are revealed – championships won, strength of schedule, head-to-head competition (if applicable) and comparative results of common adversaries with no incentive margin of victory. This stems directly from the selection committee protocol that was established in 2014 and has been followed ever since.

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Here’s a look at how Tuesday night’s rankings might shake up.

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