Notre Dame Football: Irish debut at No. 4 in College Football Playoff rankings

Notre Dame football is ranked No. 4 in the first College Football Playoff rankings of 2018.

In what is quickly becoming the most anticpated night of the college football regular season, the College Football Playoff committee released its first rankings of the year Tuesday night on ESPN. The 2018 Notre Dame football team made it’s debut at No. 4 in the rankings.

This is right where most people expected the Irish to land. With an unblemished record, three top-25 wins and arguably the best win of the college football season under its belt (Michigan), the Irish brought a strong resume to the table. Only Alabama, Clemson and LSU were ahead of the Irish.

The LSU Tigers came in at No. 3 like many experts predicted. They’ll host Alabama this coming Saturday, and the loser of that game will likely fall out of the top four as long as Clemson and Notre Dame win their respective matchups.

Michigan and Georgia rounded out the committee’s top six.

As expected, UCF was the highest ranked Group of Five team, coming in at No.12. That puts them in position to lock up the New Year’s Six bowl bid set aside for the highest ranked Group of Five team. It also puts them in position to make a run at the top four — in the event that total chaos breaks out in the Power 5 conferences.

As far as Notre Dame is concerned, this is just confirmation that all they need to do is win to get in. After some back and forth about just how strong their schedule is/was in 2018, their final four games all present enough challenges, both competitively and logistically, to keep the Irish in the top four in they were to win out.