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College Football Playoff rankings: Cincinnati joins UGA, Alabama, OSU in top four

College Football Playoff rankings: Cincinnati joins UGA, Alabama, OSU in top four
Cincinnati head football coach Luke Fickell has guided the Bearcats to an unbeaten 11-0 record this season. Cincinnati is one of just three unbeaten teams left in the Football Bowl Subdivision. File Photo by Aaron Josefczyk/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 23 (UPI) -- The Cincinnati Bearcats cracked the top four in the latest College Football Playoff rankings, becoming the first team from a Group of 5 conference to accomplish the feat in the eight-year history of the playoff format.

Cincinnati, one of only three undefeated teams left in the Football Bowl Subdivision, sits No. 4 in the fourth edition of this year's CFP rankings that were released Tuesday night. The Bearcats are behind No. 1 Georgia, No. 2 Ohio State and No. 3 Alabama.

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Michigan is at No. 5 in the rankings, followed by Notre Dame (sixth), Oklahoma State (seventh), Baylor (eighth), Ole Miss (ninth) and Oklahoma (10th). The selection committee's final rankings will be unveiled Dec. 5.

The Bearcats climbed one spot after Oregon, which was No. 3 in last week's rankings, suffered a 38-7 loss at Utah on Saturday. Cincinnati, meanwhile, earned a 48-14 blowout victory over SMU this past weekend.

RELATED College Football Playoff rankings: No. 1 Georgia leads unchanged top seven

"I think it's awesome, for our entire team, our community, our campus. But we stress to the guys that we have a ways to go," Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell said. "But the excitement about it is well deserved for a group that's fought hard all year."

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Cincinnati is scheduled to play East Carolina on Friday, then will play No. 24 Houston in the American Athletic Conference championship game Dec. 4.

Oregon and Wake Forest dropped eight spots after their ugly losses last week, while Michigan State dropped five. Utah moved up four spots, and Clemson entered the rankings for the first time this season after its 48-27 win over the Demon Deacons.

RELATED College Football Playoff rankings: Georgia retains No. 1 spot; Alabama second

College Football Playoff rankings (Nov. 23):

1. Georgia Bulldogs (11-0)

2. Ohio State Buckeyes (10-1)

RELATED College Football Playoff: Georgia tops first CFP rankings; Alabama at No. 2

3. Alabama Crimson Tide (10-1)

4. Cincinnati Bearcats (11-0)

5. Michigan Wolverines (10-1)

6. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (10-1)

7. Oklahoma State Cowboys (10-1)

8. Baylor Bears (9-2)

9. Ole Miss Rebels (9-2)

10. Oklahoma Sooners (10-1)

11. Oregon Ducks (9-2)

12. Michigan State Spartans (9-2)

13. BYU Cougars (9-2)

14. Wisconsin Badgers (8-3)

15. Texas A&M Aggies (8-3)

16. Iowa Hawkeyes (9-2)

17. Pittsburgh Panthers (9-2)

18. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (9-2)

19. Utah Utes (8-3)

20. North Carolina State Wolfpack (8-3)

21. San Diego State Aztecs (10-1)

22. UTSA Roadrunners (11-0)

23. Clemson Tigers (8-3)

24. Houston Cougars (10-1)

25. Arkansas Razorbacks (7-4)

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