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Updating the College Football Playoff impact tracker as Week 3’s top-25 final scores roll in – SB Nation

Below, let’s look at Week 3’s ranked games in a way similar to the College Football Playoff committee’s perspective.

For the committee, it’s not about what you did last week. It’s about what your entire schedule did all year long. Beating a team in Week 3 that finishes .500-plus is better than beating a team that doesn’t, no matter where either team is ranked at kickoff. The same goes for a team that finishes in the Playoff’s Top 25.

Committee rankings won’t be out until Oct. 31, so we’ll stick with AP Poll rankings for now. We’ll have time for in-depth notes on things teams did well later on. This post is only about how these results are likely to impact the Playoff picture.

Top 25 results will be added in this section as they arrive. Thursday night’s only game was Boise State 28, New Mexico 14.

All times p.m. ET. All games Saturday, unless noted. All win projections based on pregame S&P+.

Will probably matter a lot

  • No. 3 Clemson at No. 14 Louisville, 8, ABC: The winner is the clear ACC favorite and picks up a high-quality win. For Clemson, this would be a road win over a team likely to otherwise go 8-3 or better. For Louisville, this would mean knocking off a team that could go 10-1 otherwise. (The committee isn’t supposed to factor in stuff like Clemson being the defending national champ.)

Likely to matter at least a little bit

  • Colorado State at No. 1 Alabama, 7, ESPN2: Bama’s gonna win. This should be a decent resume win, and CSU could still challenge for the MWC title.
  • Texas at No. 4 USC, 8:30, Fox: Texas would still be projected to make a bowl even with a loss here, so a USC win should hold up fine. The Horns knocking off the Trojans would continue the Big 12’s overall hot start (except for Baylor and Kansas) and give the Pac-12 a big worry.
  • Army at No. 8 Ohio State, 4:30, Fox: Army has a good shot at a bowl, so Ohio State’s likely win should matter a little.
  • No. 10 Wisconsin at BYU, 3:30, ABC: This looked like it’d be a great potential road win for UW, but BYU’s off to a horrible start. The Cougars are already 1-2, have more tough games to go, and could soon have to win six in a row in order to hit .500.
  • No. 12 LSU at Mississippi State, 7, ESPN: An LSU win should hold up as a road win over a decent Power 5 bowl team. An MSU win would make another SEC West title by Bama start to look like a foregone conclusion.
  • No. 18 Kansas State at Vanderbilt, 7:30, ESPNU: Sneaky good. KSU’s looked great, albeit against nobody important. Vandy dominated at MTSU, which just went and beat Syracuse. The winner gains a solid-to-good win.
  • No. 19 Stanford at “No. 33” San Diego State, 10:30, CBSSN: Potential MWC champ SDSU’s “also receiving votes” after beating Arizona State. By year’s end, a Stanford win here would likely matter more to the big-picture Playoff committee than it would to the week-by-week AP.
  • SMU at No. 20 TCU, 3:30, ESPNU: A TCU win has a great chance to stand as a win over a bowl team. An SMU win should get the Mustangs into the New Year’s conversation for the time being.
  • No. 23 Tennessee at No. 24 Florida, 3:30, CBS: The winner is UGA’s primary SEC East challenger for now and adds a win over a team likely to finish 8-4 or better.
  • “No. 30” Oregon at Wyoming, 7, CBSSN: An Oregon win should finish as a quality road win. A Wyoming win would be excellent for the Mountain West’s New Year’s chances.

Probably won’t matter, unless an upset happens

  • Tulane at No. 2 Oklahoma, 6, SoonerSports.com PPV: OU’s gonna win. Unlikely to matter much, as Tulane’s projected to finish about 5-7.
  • Georgia State at No. 5 Penn State, 7:30, BTN: PSU’s gonna win, which won’t matter at all.
  • Fresno State at No. 6 Washington, 9:30, Pac-12 Networks: Fresno’s improved over last year, but this should still be an inconsequential blowout.
  • Air Force at No. 7 Michigan, noon, BTN: AF does have a decent shot at a bowl, which would make the likely Michigan win noticeable by the committee.
  • No. 9 Oklahoma State at Pitt, noon, ESPN: Pitt’s bowl chances are wobbly, so this might be a Power 5 road trip that doesn’t mean much to the committee if OSU wins.
  • Samford at No. 13 Georgia, 7:30, SEC Network: FCS game. Won’t matter.
  • Mercer at No. 15 Auburn, 4, SEC Network: FCS game. Won’t matter.
  • No. 16 Virginia Tech at East Carolina, 3:30, CBSSN: ECU looked terrible in Weeks 1 and 2. This is unlikely to add much to VT’s resume.
  • Oregon State at No. 21 Washington State, 5:30, Pac-12 Networks: Early on, OSU disappointed against already-low expectations. It’s unlikely a WSU win would matter at all.
  • Illinois at No. 22 USF, 7 Friday, ESPN: Illinois has improved, but a win by USF won’t likely matter a lot. However, if the Illini remain improved and crack .500 by the end, that could change.
  • San Jose State at “No. 26” Utah, 10, ESPN2: SJSU’s unlikely to finish as a quality opponent.
  • Kentucky at “No. 27” South Carolina, 7:30, SEC Network: The winner’s very likely to make a bowl. The loser, though? Let’s wait and see.
  • “No. 32” Notre Dame at Boston College, 3:30, ESPN: BC is bad. The committee won’t care much about an Irish win.

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