The 2021-2022 NCAA football season has been an extremely surprising one so far, full of many dominant performances and upsets throughout the 12 weeks of football. The Georgia Bulldogs, Alabama Crimson Tide, Cincinnati Bearcats, Michigan Wolverines and Ohio State Buckeyes are the top teams as of now, and each team has had an interesting journey to their top 5 spots.
The number one ranked Georgia Bulldogs have had one of the most successful seasons in college football history. Led by their spectacular defense, including defensive tackle Jordan Davis, they only allow a phenomenal average of 6.9 points per game with a 31 point gap between themselves and their opponent. The Bulldogs are currently the favorites to win the National Championship. Georgia will face Alabama in the SEC championship, hoping to extend their perfect season and secure the one-seed in the playoffs.
The Crimson Tide, coached by Nick Saban and led by freshman quarterback Bryce Young on offense, is one of the most successful football teams in the 21st century. Along with the leadership by Young, the team has dominated most of their games this season including a 42-21 win over Ole Miss. However, they have suffered one truly devastating loss against a now ranked Texas A&M . This one loss should not keep them out of the playoffs, yet it does show that the team is not perfect and will definitely have to perform very well to beat top-tier opponents. Alabama faces Georgia in hopes of winning the SEC and making their way into the playoffs.
The Cincinnati Bearcats have not received much respect from football fans or analyzers this season, but it is indisputable that they are a strong team. They continue to prove themselves and push their way into the playoffs. Quarterback Desmond Ridder and running back Jerome Ford lead the team each week to victory. The Bearcats have not had many tough matchups this year, aside from one strong win against #6 Notre Dame. Cincinnati hopes to extend their perfect season and lock themselves in the playoffs with a win over Houston in the American Championship.
The Michigan Wolverines are emerging as a top team in college football due to a lot of impressive wins on the season. The Wolverines have one tough loss on the season against Michigan State, where they lost 37-33, however, a few weeks later, Michigan beat the Ohio State Buckeyes 42-27. This win was vital to the Wolverines playoff push, due to Ohio State’s status and performance on the season. Arguably the best player on Michigan, Aidan Hutchison, leads the team in sacks, 12, and also has two forced fumbles on the season. The run-heavy Michigan offense is led by a dual backfield made up of Blake Corum and Hassan Haskins adding up to roughly 2,300 total yards and 32 touchdowns. Michigan faces Iowa in the Big10 Championship, hoping to make the playoffs for the first time in a long time.
The Ohio State Buckeyes are the last team featured in the Week 12 AP Poll top 5. The Buckeyes are a team that was questioned from the start on whether they would succeed or not. As of now, they have proved all haters wrong except their one loss to Oregon. The team has a fabulous passing attack commissioned by quarterback C.J. Stroud and wide receivers Chris Olave, Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Garrett Wilson. This trio of wide receivers has combined for a total of 163 receptions and 2,508 yards on the season, leading their team to a number of statement wins, week in and week out. The Buckeyes dominated Michigan State, however a week later, Michigan crushed all hopes Ohio State had, knocking them out of the Big10 Championship and most likely the playoffs.