College football rankings: Top 25 teams re-ranked by quarterback rating

What would the college football rankings look like if the AP Top 25 was reordered by passer rating? Which quarterbacks are doing the most in 2023?

Washington Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr.
Washington Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr. / Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Week 4 college football rankings are out and Georgia still reigns supreme. But that's not what we're looking at here today.

The Georgia Bulldogs have been judged as the best team in the country in the view of AP voters but they still have question marks at quarterback. So do the Alabama Crimson Tide and others.

What does the Top 25 look like if passer rating was the primary judge?

College football rankings: Comparing passer ratings

*Primary starter passer rating via

  1. USC [Actual AP ranking: 8] — Caleb Williams: 223.07
  2. Washington [7] — Michael Penix Jr.: 209.58
  3. Notre Dame [11] — Sam Hartman: 200.89
  4. Miami [18] — Tyler Van Dyke: 197.81
  5. Oklahoma [14] — Dillon Gabriel: 197.18
  6. LSU [13] — Jayden Daniels: 189.08
  7. Michigan [2] — JJ McCarthy: 189.06
  8. Washington State [16] — Cameron Ward: 187.65
  9. Missouri [23] — Brady Cook: 185.23
  10. Oregon [9] — Bo Nix: 180.53
  11. Alabama [12] — Jalen Milroe: 173.36
  12. Kansas [24] — Jalon Daniels: 172.96
  13. Ole Miss [20] — Jaxson Dart: 171.04
  14. Texas [3] — Quinn Ewers: 168.28
  15. Georgia [1] — Carson Beck: 164.27
  16. Florida [22] — Graham Mertz: 162.12
  17. Ohio State [4] — Kyle McCord: 159.66
  18. Florida State [5] — Jordan Travis: 158.15
  19. North Carolina [15] — Drake Maye: 154.70
  20. Fresno State [25] — Mikey Keene: 151.43
  21. Penn State [6] — Drew Allar: 149.00
  22. Utah [10] — Nate Johnson: 144.96
  23. Oregon State [19] — DJ Uiagalelei: 142.80
  24. Tennessee [21] — Joe Milton III: 142.28
  25. Duke [17] — Riley Leonard: 140.37

It should surprise absolutely no one to see USC's Caleb Williams, Washington's Michael Penix and Notre Dame's Sam Hartman at the top of the charts in terms of passer rating. They're the only QBs with 200+ ratings in the Top 25 and Penix and Williams are neck-and-neck for the Heisman right now.

But No. 18 Miami gets a huge boost thanks to the play of Tyler Van Dyke. The Hurricanes upset Texas A&M on the strength of his five-touchdown outing and he's been slinging it all year. Oklahoma's Dillon Gabriel isn't far behind.

The real surprise here is probably Jalen Milroe outdoing quarterbacks like Quinn Ewers of Texas, Carson Beck of Georgia, Kyle McCord of Ohio State and Jordan Travis of Florida State. The Alabama quarterback was benched for a game but poor play from Tyler Buchner and Ty Simpson proved he's the Tide's best option.

Beck (and Michigan's JJ McCarthy) simply hasn't been tested but his failure to throw a touchdown pass in a 24-14 victory over South Carolina has hurt his rating.

At the back of the pack, Penn State's Drew Allar had a shaky outing against Illinois but followed that up with four touchdowns against a stout Iowa defense, so the Nittany Lions shouldn't be too worried.

Tennessee, however, can only stick with Joe Milton for so long if he maintains a passer rating that puts him outside the Top 50 nationally.

Bo Nix rises, Shedeur Sanders falls. dark. Heisman Rankings. Heisman rankings