ESPN releases final FPI rankings before the start of the season Norm Hall/Getty Images
GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 31: Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes walks off the field after the Clemson Tigers beat the Ohio State Buckeyes 31-0 to win the 2016 PlayStation Fiesta Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium on December 31, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

College football season is here and, just before kick-off for “Week 0.5,” the good people of ESPN have stepped up with an update to their Football Power Index. For the most part, the rankings look very similar to what we’ve seen previously from the worldwide leader’s formula but there are a few shifts.

LSU was listed at No. 10 in the previous edition and, this time, the Tigers slip all the way to No. 12 overall. Ed Orgeron’s team is replaced by Stanford in the top 10 and that is in keeping with the ever-increasing expectations for David Shaw’s squad before their intriguing season opener against Rice in Australia.

Another interesting choice there with Stanford? Both they and Washington are ranked ahead of USC in the standings. It looks like maybe ESPN’s algorithms aren’t as high on the Trojans like a lot of people are ahead of the 2017 season.

At the top, it is still Ohio State flying the banner ahead of Alabama and that is certainly a controversial stance given that seemingly everyone is on the Crimson Tide as the best team in the land. However, it doesn’t appear to be particularly close, as the Buckeyes are projected to win 11.9 games (including the Big Ten title) and that is a comfortable margin between Ohio State and everyone else.

Here are the updated top 10 from ESPN’s FPI:

  1. Ohio State
  2. Alabama
  3. Florida State
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Auburn
  6. Clemson
  7. Washington
  8. Penn State
  9. Wisconsin
  10. Stanford

(H/T The Spun)

Rowland is a lifelong Atlanta sports fan that also grew up in a Michigan Wolverines household. He previously worked with FanSided, SB Nation and UPROXX sports and covers college football for FanBuzz.
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