Inaugural Rankings

Read more about how the first edition of the Hamm's Ranking was created. Jackson highlights some things that surprised him and what stood out.

Jackson Hamm

7/3/20233 min read

Hello College Football Fans! It is already July and that means Football Saturdays are right around the Corner. New seasons bring new rankings, and the inaugural edition of the Hamm's Rankings are out. I'm going to break down how I came up with these rankings, what surprised me, and what stood out the most.

To be clear, these are not my personal thoughts on the teams (I will share those with you later). This is a computer model that I put together to rank all FBS teams in College Football on a scale of 1-100. If you want to see the full rankings and how each team fared in the different ranking criteria, head over to the rankings tab here. Let's break down these rankings together.

What Surprised Me

Georgia is really far ahead of the rest of the pack in these rankings. To give you an idea, they're 8 points ahead of Alabama and almost 30 points ahead of Tennessee. Don't write the Dawgs in for a three-peat just yet though. Their ranking is heavily influenced by consistency, and deservingly so. But their rating is likely to become more in line with the rest of the top 5 as the season progresses. For now though, Georgia is the emphatic number one and the favorite to win the national title. Alabama stands in their way and will have a much tougher team than the Bulldogs faced last season. The SEC race is shaping up to be a good one once again. With many SEC schools in the Top 24, we could see some shocking upsets. Something that makes this sport so special.

Big Ten East makes their presence felt. While it wasn't surprising to see Michigan or Ohio State at the top of the list, Penn State was a bit of a shocker at number 5. Penn State has a home game against Michigan and a trip to Columbus this season. Both of these matchups have produced legendary games in the past and are sure to be must watch football this year. Could this be the year Penn State finally breaks through and makes it to the College Football Playoff? We will have to see, but one things for sure. The Big Ten East is going to be a meat grinder of a division this year, possibly sending two teams to the CFP for the second year in a row.

Pac-12 Resurgence. Its been awhile since the Pac-12 has been on the national stage. That could change this year with many of the leagues teams appearing in the Hamm's Rankings Top 24. Currently, we project Oregon to win the conference. But this will be no easy feat, the Ducks have stiff competition in Utah, USC, and Washington this year. A team to watch in the Pac-12, Oregon State. They just missed the cut off to be featured, but come in at number 25. The beavers have been flying under the radar for some years now but it will be no surprise to us if they spoil a couple seasons this year or even make a Pac-12 championship run of their own.

Texas is Back. No but really, this time it's true. The age old saying has led many to write off the Longhorns this year. But in the era of NIL, that oil money in Texas is hungry for some wins. We will get to see early what this team is made of against a really great Alabama team. Even if they lose, it seems as if the Big 12 will be a bit more forgiving this year for Texas. TCU is high on these rankings due to their run last year, but lost a lot of important pieces that leave question marks surrounding the Horned Frogs. Kansas State made a surprising appearance at 13, and will likely be the toughest team standing in the Longhorns way. Oklahoma also appears in these rankings at 15. While that might be disappointing to some Sooner fans after the recent success they've had, they pose a formidable threat to Texas for the Big 12 crown.

Will Clemson Reclaim the ACC? Our Computer Rankings are big fans of Clemson this year. It's been a somewhat odd last couple of years for Clemson. After going toe to toe with Alabama for many years, they've fallen on tougher times recently. Could this be because of the rise of Georgia? The Bulldogs are only a short drive away from Clemson and have been recruiting the same local kids the Tigers go after. Regardless, Clemson has been working to get back to the top of the College Football world. They have some competition though. Florida State has quietly been building a powerhouse of their own. Strong enough to take on the Elite of the CFB world? They will have the opportunity to prove that early against a very good LSU team. Clemson and Florida State look to be the favorites in the ACC. Some other notable teams that could give them trouble are NC State and UNC. After a couple years away from the action, it's likely the ACC will make a return to the CFP this year.