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Like George Kittle, Iowa football is soaring right now.
Like George Kittle, Iowa football is soaring right now.
Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Your 9-0 Iowa Hawkeyes are ranked fifth in the second College Football Playoff rankings of the season, released Tuesday night.  Iowa moved up to 8th in both the AP and Coaches polls this week, so for the second straight week the the College Football Playoff committee likes Iowa more than the pollsters.  Iowa was ranked ninth last week and moved up this week thanks in part to losses to last week's #2 (LSU), #7 (Michigan State), and #8 (TCU) teams, although they also moved ahead of Baylor (who dropped from #4 to #6).

CFP rankings

Iowa is one of two undefeated Big Ten teams with a chance to make the Playoff.  Ohio State, still the defending national champions, is the other undefeated Big Ten squad and they're ranked 3rd.  Michigan State fell from the ranks of the undefeated in, uh, controversial fashion last weekend and dropped to 13th.  They remain one spot ahead of Michigan, ranked 14th.

Two of Iowa's vanquished foes join them in the new rankings: Northwestern, ranked 21st last week, moves up to 18th this week, while Wisconsin enters the poll at #25.  Pitt was seemingly on the cusp of joining the rankings, but back-to-back losses to North Carolina and Notre Dame have dropped them to 6-3 and likely ended any shot of them cracking the rankings this season, unless they can run the table and get by North Carolina for a spot in the ACC Championship Game.

Two one-loss are ranked ahead of Iowa, Alabama and Notre Dame.  Alabama's toughest remaining game might be this weekend when they venture to Starkville, home of 60,000+ cowbells (as well as Dak Prescott and the rest of the Mississippi State football team).  Difficult environment + quality opponent + potential letdown (after their emphatic thumping of LSU last week) = upset?  Maybe.  Notre Dame's schedule is light for the next few weeks, but a massive game at Stanford looms on Thanksgiving weekend.

But anyway: Iowa's in the top five.  This is fun. Enjoy it. Can't stop. Won't stop. Three more weeks to go.