NEW YORK (AP) — Clemson is ranked fourth in the first College Football Playoff Poll, released on Tuesday night.
Georgia is ranked first, Alabama is second, Notre Dame is third. The top four teams at the end of the season will advance to the College Football Playoff on January 1.
Clemson is 7-1 so far this year with wins over six teams with winning records, the most of any team in the nation. Those six teams (Auburn, Louisville, Virginia Tech, Boston College, Wake Forest and Georgia Tech) are also ranked in the top 40 of many of the latest computer rankings.
Clemson, Alabama and Ohio State are the only schools to be ranked in each of the 20 College Football Playoff Polls in the four years of the system. This is the 13th straight ranking that Clemson has been in the top four, a streak that dates to the first poll of the 2015 season.
Oklahoma and Ohio State were the next two in the selection committee's initial top 25.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart clearly was influenced by his former boss, Nick Saban, on the subject of dealing with national polls.
"They would talk about rat poison a lot and things like that," Smart said Monday, referring to Saban's description for outside rankings and praise for his Alabama team. The comment drew a laugh, even from Smart.
Georgia and Alabama, Southeastern Conference rivals, are both undefeated and have been dominating their competition. The Bulldogs' one close game was at Notre Dame in September, a 20-19 victory.
The Fighting Irish (7-1) have not lost since, including blowouts of Michigan State, Southern California and North Carolina State.
The rest of the top 10 is Penn State, TCU, Wisconsin and Miami (Fla.).
The Badgers and the Hurricanes are both unbeaten, but neither has a marquee win over a highly-ranked opponent.
College Football Playoff Poll (October 31, 2017)
1. Georgia (8-0), 2. Alabama (8-0), 3. Notre Dame (7-1), 4. Clemson (7-1), 5. Oklahoma (7-1), 6. Ohio State (7-1) 7. Penn State (7-1), 8. TCU (7-1), 9. Wisconsin (8-0), 10. Miami (FL) (7-0), 11. Oklahoma State (7-1), 12. Washington (7-1), 13. Virginia Tech (7-1), 14. Auburn (6-2), 15. Iowa State (6-2), 16. Mississippi State (6-2), 17. Southern California (7-2), 18. UCF (7-2), 19. LSU (6-2), 20. NC State (6-2), , 21. Stanford (6-2), 22. Arizona (6-2), 23. Memphis (7-1), 24. Michigan State (6-2), 25. Washington State (7-2).