Washington Football team claws way back to sixth ranking

BOULDER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23: Myles Gaskin
BOULDER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23: Myles Gaskin /
BOULDER, CO – SEPTEMBER 23: Myles Gaskin
BOULDER, CO – SEPTEMBER 23: Myles Gaskin /

The Washington Football team is still just four games into the season. But they are trying to land in the nation’s top four to earn another invitation to the NCAA playoffs

NCAA football is a tough business. Some things are decided on the field. Other things are decided off the field. Right now, the national rankings are a combination of both. And such is the fate of the Washington Football team.

As of today, the Huskies are 4-0. They have won by a significant margin in each of their first four games.  Two wins occurred at home.  Two wins occurred on the road, including a win on the east coast and a victory over last year’s Pac-12 championship opponent.

And the nation believes that is only good for sixth place in the nation.  Oh well, that will have to do for now.

Lots of football to play

The Pac-12 is still hotly contested. Each week the ranks of the undefeated thin, so the teams that emerge unscathed will continue to rise in the rankings. Right now, there are four undefeated teams in the Pac-12: Utah, USC, Washington and Washington State. And this weekend, the USC Trojans travel to play the Washington State Cougars. That translates into at least one team falling out of the undefeated ranks.

But there is more excitement. Utah hosts Stanford, a 2-2 team many thought would challenge for the Pac-12 championship this year. Washington travels to face Oregon State. On paper, that is a win. Still, after an emotional win at Colorado, the Oregon State Beavers could benefit from a trap game effect. Regardless of the outcomes, there will be fewer undefeated teams in the Pac-12 next week.

NCAA Playoffs invitation only go to Pac-12 Champs

But Washington cannot be content to remain at six, or even climb to five. You see, it’s the top four spots in the nation which land the invitations to the NCAA playoffs. And with the current trend, it will certainly take the Pac-12 championship to land that invitation.

That championship is the goal for more than repeating a dominance over the Pac-12. It’s the lone doorway to the NCAA playoffs. Last season, the Huskies tasted post season play. Now they have an appetite for more.

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It’s a long season. The Washington Football team face eight more opponents before any post season discussions begin. But it’s never too early to keep it all in perspective.  Sixth won’t cut it. The team needs to win the Pac-12 and then defeat two nationally ranked opponents.

That is the objective. And while the team has fought hard to get to this point, the real fight is still ahead.