What another great week of college football! It’s officially time to break down our refreshed top 25 via my SAM (Simulated Adjusted [Elo] Model) model.

Let’s jump into it.

The SAM model gives us the same top 4 teams as the AP poll, which is a great sign! To any CFB watcher, these teams are clearly the best of the best–how could we trust this model if it couldn’t identify those 4 as the leaders? Some other big takeaways from week 2:

  • UNC at 5. This team is off to a hot 3-0 start–while they’ve struggled at times, they’ve ground out tough wins on the road, which the model has clearly rewarded
  • TCU’s dive into the top 10. The Horned Frogs annihilated their first two opponents, giving them a boost into week 3 (see the 96-point change in their SAM rating). Their next 4 games will be a true test of their skill as they face SMU, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Oklahoma St.
  • Tennessee outpaced Pitt in week 2, earning them a spot in the top 25
  • Washington (14) vs. Little Brother (15) will be a thrilling matchup to watch this weekend. Is a top 10 spot on the line for either team?
  • Florida has fallen out of the top 25! The model really punishes teams for losses, especially early on!
  • Notable misses: BYU, Baylor, Oregon, Kentucky

As two weeks have gone by, we can start to take a look at what direction teams are trending compared to the NCAAF’s best and worst-rated teams.

TCU’s climb to the top
Arkansas outperforming league expectations
Is Pitt about to tank?
Disappointment in Nebraska

What to watch for in week 3:

  • BYU vs. Oregon: Can one of these teams claw their way into the SAM top 25?
  • Washington (14) vs. MSU (15): The winner could push themselves into the top 10, while the loser could very well drop out of the top 25
  • Miami (10) vs. Texas A&M: Here is Miami’s chance to prove their worth against a high-caliber team!
  • Penn State (6) vs. Auburn (17): Which team is officially back? We’ll find out this weekend!