Projected Top 25 College Football Playoff rankings after Week 9: No. 6-5
6. Washington Huskies
Washington certainly hasn’t been making it easy on themselves over the past couple of weeks. The Huskies found themselves in a surprising dogfight a week ago against Arizona State as the high-powered offense with Michael Penix Jr. at the helm failed to account for a touchdown. This week, it was an entirely different type of struggle as the Kalen DeBoer’s team got into a surprising shootout with the Stanford Cardinal.
Penix and the Washington offense ultimately had enough as he threw for four touchdowns on the night, though he gave everyone a scare with a late fourth-quarter interception thrown into the end zone. However, there should be warranted concern about this team as they head into the final month of the season. Injuries appear to be taking their toll on both sides of the ball for this team and they might get clipped before they make it to Vegas for the Pac-12 Championship Game.
5. Texas Longhorns
Steve Sarkisian and the Longhorns entered this game without starting quarterback Quinn Ewers available after he suffered a shoulder injury in the narrow win over Houston last week. That, however, appeared to galvanize Texas on both sides of the ball as Maalik Murphy got the start at the helm of the offense.
Murphy was definitely hit or miss throughout the day, but his highs were quite impressive, including a pair of touchdown throws. But with Jonathan Brooks continuing to look like a star workhorse and the defense holding BYU to under 300 yards of total offense while forcing three turnovers, the Longhorns cruised to the 35-6 win.
With Texas’ only loss coming to another Top 10 team in Oklahoma while also having a road win at 7-1 Alabama, I think the committee vaults them ahead of Washington in the Top 25.