Penn State, Michigan and Wisconsin are all ranked in the top 10 headed into Week 4 after undefeated starts.
Sports Illustrated’s Chris Johnson had all three in his list of top five “Undefeated but Unproven” teams.
Michigan is 3-0 after wins over Florida, Cincinnati and Air Force.
“Michigan’s season-opening victory over Florida will count for something in the College Football Playoff selection committee’s deliberation process,” Johnson writes, “and the Wolverines will receive more credit if the Gators go on to beat out Georgia in the SEC East—even if winning that division could amount to a hollow accomplishment given the lackluster teams in the running for it. But we can separate the projected value of that non-conference triumph from what it says about Michigan right now. The answer: Not much.”
Penn State has played the weakest schedule out of the three, but has been the most dominant on the scoreboard. The Nittany Lions outscored Akron, Pitt and Georgia State by a combined score of 141 to 14.
“Penn State has not in any way dimmed the playoff hopes it harbored in the preseason,” Johnson writes. “Its chances actually look better now than they did a few weeks ago due to the tepid starts in Columbus and Ann Arbor. Now the Nittany Lions need to show their casual stroll through non-conference play wasn’t merely a result of weak competition.”
Wisconsin has outscored Utah State, Florida Atlantic and BYU by a combined score of 130 to 30. Utah State and FAU don’t appear to be special this year, and BYU has disappointed so far.