Penn State Football is unranked in first College Football Playoff Rankings

Story posted November 3, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Logan Bourandas

Following a third straight loss on Saturday, Penn State football was not one of the 25 teams included in the initial rankings from the College Football Playoff selection committee.

At one point, the Nittany Lions were riding high with a 5-0 record and held the No. 4 ranking in the country.

Since then, a three-game losing streak which included losses on the road to ranked Iowa and Ohio State have knocked the blue and white further down the rankings as they are now No. 22 in the AP Polls.

The College Football Playoff selection committee did not think of the Nittany Lions as highly however as they were not one of the six Big Ten teams named to their first top-25 ranking of the season during Tuesday’s initial rankings.

Among those six teams is a 5-3 Wisconsin Badgers team whom Penn State defeated in its opening game of the season. The Nittany Lions won 16-10 against the Badgers in Madison for what was their first of two ranked wins on the season thus far.

Wisconsin was one of two teams with three losses to make the top-25 as they were only joined by Mississippi State.

While the Nittany Lions have the head-to-head advantage over Wisconsin, all three of the Badgers losses came at the hands of ranked opponents, which included Notre Dame and Michigan, while the Nittany Lions lost in nine overtimes to an unranked Illinois team in Beaver Stadium.

The other ranked win came in the whiteout game against the Auburn Tigers where the Nittany Lions were able to secure a 28-20 win. Auburn was ranked No. 13 in Tuesday’s rankings as they have gone on to beat ranked teams such as Arkansas and Ole Miss.

Some other notable wins for Penn State came against teams such as Indiana and Ball State but as those teams have had worse than expected seasons, those wins have lost some of their value over time.

Despite things not going the way of Penn State during Tuesday’s rankings, the Nittany Lions still have time to right the ship and make it back onto the list.

The Nittany Lions have four games remaining on the year with half of them coming against ranked opponents.

They will face No. 7 Michigan at home and No. 3 Michigan State on the road in East Lansing to close out the season.

Last season, the Nittany Lions won against both these teams so while things may not look great right now for this Penn State football team, time is still on their side as the season slowly winds down.

Logan Bourandas is a third-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email lxb5412@psu.edu.