ESPN 2023 College Football Power Rankings after Week 10 – ESPN – ESPN

Tee Rasheed
26 Min Read

Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit recap the college football playoff rankings and where Washington stands after defeating USC. (1:13)
Close calls, near upsets and actual upsets were the order of Week 10.
Ohio State, Georgia and Florida State were on upset alert at halftime. All came through in the second half. Notre Dame (to Clemson) and Oklahoma (to Oklahoma State) both were upset. And Texas and Ole Miss both avoided upsets when a fourth-down gamble failed, in the case of Texas, and a field goal that would have tied the score was blocked, in the case of Ole Miss.
And those were just the afternoon games.
Prime time brought yet another opportunity for upsets, but unbeaten Washington prevailed over USC in a track meet and Alabama pulled away from LSU in a game that was tied at the half.
Here’s how the power rankings play out after Week 10 results:
The Bulldogs survived another hard-fought game against Missouri with a 30-21 victory at Sanford Stadium, their 26th consecutive win. The next three weeks won’t get much easier, as Georgia hosts Ole Miss before closing the regular season with road contests at Tennessee and rival Georgia Tech. The Bulldogs lost All-American linebacker Jamon Dumas-Johnson, who fractured his left forearm on the final play of the third quarter. It’s not known how long the junior will be sidelined. He had started 24 straight games and was the signal-caller on defense. Sophomore Jalon Walker, who has played very well the past few games, and freshman C.J. Allen will have increased roles in Dumas-Johnson’s absence. — Mark Schlabach
Up next: vs. Ole Miss
The Wolverines continued their streak of scoring 40 or more points to five straight conference games, beating Purdue 41-13. Quarterback J.J. McCarthy threw for 335 yards and completed 24 of 37 passes. The Wolverines relied heavily on the run game in the red zone, with backs Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards combining for four touchdowns. The Michigan defense was able to keep Purdue from scoring in the third quarter, which means the team has outscored opponents 114-0 in the third quarter this season. It wasn’t a perfect game, but Michigan dominated to stay undefeated. The team’s toughest test is in front of it with Penn State on the road next in addition to the ongoing sign-stealing investigation. — Tom VanHaaren
Up next: at Penn State (noon ET, Fox)
It did not look pretty at times, but Florida State did enough to beat Pitt 24-7 and clinch a spot in the ACC championship game for the first time since 2014. With receivers Keon Coleman and Johnny Wilson out with injuries, it took time for the Florida State offense to find a groove. But consecutive scoring drives in the third quarter helped put the game out of reach. Jordan Travis completed 22 of 36 passes for 360 yards and a touchdown and rushed for another score. Ja’Khi Douglas stepped up with Coleman and Wilson out with six catches for 115 yards. Florida State has won 15 straight games entering its rivalry game against Miami on Saturday. — Andrea Adelson
Up next: vs. Miami (ABC)

The Buckeyes found themselves with a 9-7 deficit at halftime against Rutgers, the first time Ohio State trailed at the half and just the second time the team has been behind against the Scarlet Knights. The Buckeyes went on a run in the second half, scoring 28 points for a 35-16 win. Running back TreVeyon Henderson took the majority of the carries with Miyan Williams out with an injury, and Henderson finished the day with 128 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Quarterback Kyle McCord connected with receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. for two touchdowns that helped put Ohio State over the top and keep the team undefeated. — Tom VanHaaren
Up next: vs. Michigan State (7:30 p.m. ET, NBC)
Quarterback Michael Penix Jr. might have the Heisman votes piling up in his corner, but on Saturday night against USC, it was running back Dillon Johnson who stole the show and helped the Huskies outlast the Trojans in a 52-42 shootout. Of Washington’s 572 yards of offense, Johnson accounted for 256 of those on the ground. Oh yeah, he added four touchdowns too. Johnson has never had a game this productive, and it arrived at the right time for the Huskies, who battled back-and-forth series with USC’s offense all night. In the end, the No. 5 team in the country had an unstoppable running game against one of the worst run defenses in the nation, and that was enough to keep Kalen DeBoer’s team undefeated as it heads into the final stretch with all of its lofty goals still intact. — Paolo Uggetti
Up next: vs. Utah
The Ducks continue to look the part of College Football Playoff contender, this time in a 63-19 win against Cal in which they shook off a chaotic start to win going away. Quarterback Bo Nix strengthened his Heisman Trophy résumé, throwing for a season-high 386 yards on 29-of-38 passing with four touchdowns (his lone interception came on the first play from scrimmage on a dropped pass). Nix also rushed for a pair of short touchdowns. For the Ducks, their playoff prospects look pretty straightforward: win out and they’re in. And if they play as well as they have since losing a heartbreaker at Washington on Oct. 13, it’s a plausible scenario. — Kyle Bonagura
Up next: vs. USC
The Longhorns survived a Kansas State rally, then headed to overtime where a furious pass rush thwarted a fourth-down attempt to go for the win by the Wildcats when a field goal would have tied the game and sent it to a second OT. Texas outgained Kansas State 478-360 (including 230 rushing yards) and won its seventh straight against the Wildcats, holding K-State to 33 yards rushing and snapping a 28-game streak with at least 100 yards on the ground for the Wildcats. The Longhorns, No. 7 in the initial College Football Playoff rankings, add a top-25 win to their résumé. — Dave Wilson
Up next: at TCU
Alabama had a historic night against LSU. Jalen Milroe became the first Alabama quarterback to run for four touchdowns. Coach Nick Saban got his 202nd win at Alabama, passing Georgia’s Vince Dooley for the second-most wins at a single SEC school (Bear Bryant won 224 games in 25 seasons at Alabama). And Will Reichard became the fourth player — and first kicker — in FBS history to score 500 career points, joining Navy’s Keenan Reynolds (530 from 2012 to 2015), Louisiana Tech’s Kenneth Dixon (522 from 2012 to 2015) and Wisconsin’s Montee Ball (500 from 2009 to 2012). — ESPN Stats & Info
Up next: at Kentucky (noon ET, ESPN)
With its September loss to Alabama in Tuscaloosa a distant memory, Ole Miss held off a late Texas A&M comeback for a 38-35 win. Star running back Quinshon Judkins‘ third touchdown run of the game — coming with 1:40 left in regulation — and Deantre Prince‘s block of Randy Bond‘s 47-yard field goal attempt as time expired allowed the Rebels to forget how they let a 10-point fourth-quarter lead dissolve. Quarterback Jaxson Dart (24-of-33 passing for 387 yards and two touchdowns) helped Tre Harris (11 receptions for 213 yards and a touchdown on 15 targets) have a career day. Harris eclipsed the 100-yard receiving mark for the fourth time this season, while the offense racked up 299 of its 518 total yards in the first half. Judkins (102 rushing yards), a sophomore, had his ninth multi-touchdown game since the start of 2022, an FBS high. As they prepare for next week’s visit to Georgia after a fifth straight victory, the Rebels are off to an 8-1 start for the third time in the past 60 years (1990 and 2022). — Blake Baumgartner
Up next: at Georgia
The Nittany Lions beat Maryland 52-15 despite the fact that Terps quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa opened with 17 straight completions. Tagovailoa finished with 286 passing yards and a touchdown, but the Penn State defense held Maryland to minus-49 total rushing yards (including sack yardage). That is the second-fewest rushing yards allowed in a game by Penn State in program history. The defense did its job, putting up 27 points in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Drew Allar finished with 240 passing yards and four touchdowns in the win, which puts Penn State at 8-1 on the season as it looks ahead to its next game with Michigan, the No. 3 team in the country. — VanHaaren
Up next: vs. Michigan (noon ET, Fox)
It hardly mattered that leading receiver Jamari Thrash sat out against Virginia Tech with an injury. The Cardinals pounded the ball on the ground, rushing for 231 yards en route to another dominant win, 34-3 over the Hokies. Isaac Guerendo had 146 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 11 carries, helping boost the running game with Jawhar Jordan limited as he continues to deal with injury. But perhaps the most underrated story on this team is its defense. Louisville has beaten its past two opponents by a combined score of 57-3. Louisville has now held five straight opponents under 300 yards of total offense and under 100 rushing yards. At 5-1 in conference play, Louisville has the inside track to make it to the ACC championship game. — Adelson
Up next: vs. Virginia, Thursday (7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)
A week after a humbling loss to Oregon, the Utes roared back with a 55-3 win against Arizona State to remain in the Pac-12 title game race. It was Utah’s most complete performance of the season and came when ASU had been getting progressively better over the past few weeks. QB Bryson Barnes completed 19 of 28 passes for just 161 yards, but connected on four touchdown throws — two to Devaughn Vele. Running back Ja’Quinden Jackson ran for 111 yards on 13 carries as the Utes amassed 352 yards on the ground. Defensively, the Utes were even better: They limited ASU to 43 yards rushing and 40 yards passing. — Bonagura
Up next: at Washington
The Tigers will have to get over another near-miss against Georgia, but they’ve still got a chance to put together a memorable season. Special teams mistakes and two late turnovers doomed Missouri in the road loss. The good news: Quarterback Brady Cook and running back Cody Schrader had their way against one of the better defenses in the FBS. Schrader ran for 112 yards with one touchdown on 22 carries; Cook ran for 57 yards (he lost 18 on three sacks) and passed for 212 yards with one score. Cook’s two late interceptions doomed Missouri’s chances of coming back. The Tigers host Tennessee and Florida the next two weeks before closing the regular season at Arkansas. — Schlabach
Up next: vs. Tennessee
The Beavers overcame early miscues to outlast Colorado behind a defense that held the Buffaloes out of the end zone for more than 49 minutes. The overall performance was far from crisp, as Oregon State twice fumbled in its own territory in the first half and a 2-point conversion attempt was returned 88 yards for points after a bad snap. But coordinator Trent Bray’s defense dominated a disjointed Colorado offense, allowing only 78 yards through three quarters and recording four sacks, seven quarterback hurries and six tackles for loss. Linebacker Andrew Chatfield Jr. led the way with three sacks, two quarterback hurries and two pass breakups, while linebackers Easton Mascarenas-Arnold and Cory Stover combined for three tackles for loss and a forced fumble. Quarterback DJ Uiagalelei had 223 pass yards with a passing and rushing touchdown. The offense responded to Colorado’s first touchdown with a time-consuming drive culminating with a field goal. — Adam Rittenberg
Up next: vs. Stanford
There wasn’t much drama for the Vols heading into their most important stretch of the season. They led 35-3 at the half after rolling up more than 400 yards in the first half on their way to a 59-3 demolition of UConn on Saturday at Neyland Stadium. Quarterback Joe Milton III passed for two touchdowns and ran for a TD, and Tennessee finished with 650 yards in total offense. But the Vols’ defense also got into the act. They scored three defensive touchdowns, the first time in school history that has happened. UConn was never going to be much of a test for Tennessee, which now has won 14 straight games at home. The Vols’ season will be shaped by their next two games. They travel to Missouri next Saturday and then come back home to face Georgia on Nov. 18. — Chris Low
Up next: at Missouri
The Cowboys claimed final Bedlam bragging rights with a thrilling 27-24 victory over No. 10 Oklahoma as Mike Gundy earned his 100th career Big 12 win, joining only Bob Stoops and Bill Snyder in that club. Oklahoma was intent on slowing Ollie Gordon II, who still managed 137 yards and two touchdowns on a career-high 33 carries, but Alan Bowman threw for 334 yards, including a breakout performance by Rashod Owens with 10 catches for 136 yards. OSU reeled off its fifth straight win and all of a sudden is right in the mix for the Big 12 title game. — Dave Wilson
Up next: at UCF (3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)
The Jayhawks reached the seven-win mark for the first time since 2008 with a 28-21 win against Iowa State to remain in the Big 12 title race. The win also marked the first time Kansas won back-to-back conference games since 2008. QB Jason Bean completed 14 of 23 passes for 287 yards with an 80-yard touchdown pass to Lawrence Arnold that gave Kansas a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter. The Jayhawks host Texas Tech and Kansas State the next two games before finishing the regular season with a trip to Cincinnati. — Bonagura
Up next: vs. Texas Tech
The Sooners couldn’t make the plays when they needed them most, fumbling a direct snap to Jovantae Barnes at the OSU 34, ending a drive in the first quarter and then failing to convert a fourth-and-5 play with 1:01 left in the game when Drake Stoops was stopped for a 3-yard gain with Oklahoma trailing by three at midfield. Dillon Gabriel was 26-of-37 for 344 yards and a touchdown, and Gavin Sawchuk reeled off a 64-yard scoring run en route to 111 yards rushing. The Sooners loaded up to stop Ollie Gordon II, who ran 33 times for 137 yards, but Alan Bowman made them pay with 334 yards passing as the Sooners lost the last scheduled Bedlam game, one that will sting for a while, while also putting OU in a logjam with two losses in the Big 12 race. — Dave Wilson
Up next: vs. West Virginia
The Dukes keep rolling. Against a Georgia State team that was averaging 30 points per game and 6.1 yards per play, JMU averaged just 14 and 4.8, respectively. Meanwhile, quarterback Jordan McCloud threw for 307 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 104 yards and two more scores as the Dukes won 42-14. You know the details by now: In their second FBS season, they’re still ineligible for the Sun Belt title, and they can’t bowl unless there aren’t enough bowl-eligible teams. But Curt Cignetti’s program is putting together the best two-year FBS debut since Marshall went 22-4 in 1997-98. But Marshall had Randy Moss for one of those years — the Dukes are doing this with mortals. (Marshall also got to bowl both seasons.) — Connelly
Up next: vs. UConn (2 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
Tulane looked shaky early but rebounded to win its seventh straight game and stay undefeated in AAC play. The Green Wave defense held East Carolina to 190 total yards — 143 of which came in the first quarter as the Pirates jumped to a 10-0 lead. But Tulane allowed just 47 yards over the last three quarters. Despite tallying its fewest points in a victory since 2014, according to ESPN Stats & Information, the Green Wave offense did enough behind quarterback Michael Pratt (16-of-25 passing for 213 yards and a touchdown), running back Makhi Hughes (105 rushing yards on 25 carries) and Valentino Ambrosio‘s two field goals. Tulane overcame a deficit of at least 10 points to win for the third time this season (tied for the lead in the FBS). — Baumgartner
Up next: vs. Tulsa (noon ET, ESPN2)
The Tigers can’t say they didn’t have a chance at Alabama. Scoring just before halftime and again to start the second half, momentum was squarely in their favor. All they needed was to make a stop. But in what became a theme, the defense let LSU down. Jalen Milroe‘s four passes of 20-plus yards were one thing. Letting him run wild with 155 yards and four touchdowns rushing was quite another. Jayden Daniels was superb, accounting for three touchdowns (two passing, one rushing), but was knocked out of the game late with an apparent head injury. Dealt a third loss, LSU’s hopes of reaching the SEC championship and making a run at the College Football Playoff pretty much ended in Tuscaloosa. — Alex Scarborough
Up next: vs. Florida
Marcus Freeman’s Fighting Irish played maybe their two best games of the season before heading to Clemson, but they couldn’t keep the momentum going early Saturday. Red zone failures and a pick-six gave Clemson a 24-6 lead midway through the second quarter, and while Notre Dame outscored the Tigers from there, the Irish went scoreless over their final six possessions and fell 31-23. The Irish defense held Clemson to 285 total yards (4.1 per play), and Audric Estime gained 120 combined rushing and receiving yards. But Sam Hartman went a dismal 13 for 30 for just 146 yards and two interceptions, and Notre Dame fell to 7-3 overall. Any hopes for a New Year’s Six bowl bid are pretty much toast. — Bill Connelly
Up next: vs. Wake Forest, Nov. 18
The Tar Heels snapped their two-game losing streak, thanks in large part to their FCS opponent — Campbell. North Carolina cruised to a 59-7 victory as Drake Maye threw four touchdown passes and Omarion Hampton had 144 yards rushing. But the truth is, we will not know what type of defensive improvements this team has made until next week, when it hosts rival Duke. In its two-game losing streak, North Carolina’s defense regressed, and coach Mack Brown said fixing it was a priority. The final stretch of the season is tough. After Duke, North Carolina finishes on the road against Clemson and NC State. — Adelson
Up next: vs. Duke (8 p.m. ET, ACC Network)
While Colorado was grabbing offseason headlines, Arizona was the Pac-12 team revving up for a major turnaround. The Wildcats beat UCLA 27-10 to secure their third straight win — all against ranked opponents — and remain in the Pac-12 title chase. QB Noah Fifita doesn’t look like he’ll relinquish the starting job back to Jayden de Laura anytime soon. He completed 25 of 32 passes for 300 yards against UCLA as the Wildcats became bowl eligible. They haven’t played in a bowl game since the 2017 season, the last under former coach Rich Rodriguez. Arizona travels to Colorado next week before finishing the regular season with games against Utah and Arizona. — Bonagura
Up next: at Colorado
Touchdown, fumble, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown. Then another touchdown in garbage time. Liberty made light work of Louisiana Tech on Saturday, scoring on nearly every possession, surging to a 28-10 halftime lead and cruising to a 56-30 win to move to 9-0 in Jamey Chadwell’s first season. Kaidon Salter threw for 297 yards and four scores — he has 1,959 passing yards and 664 rushing yards for the season — while Quinton Cooley ran for 179 yards. The Flames’ offense ran circles around the Tech defense to the tune of 602 yards at 8.6 per play. With Air Force’s loss to Army, Liberty will move up the Group of 5 pecking order, but a weak strength of schedule might prevent it from landing in the CFP rankings. — Connelly
Up next: vs. Old Dominion (1 p.m. ET, ESPN+)


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