When the first ever College Football Playoff poll was released around this time last season, your Mississippi State Bulldogs were undefeated and sat atop every team in the land at No. 1. While that's not the case this season after losses to LSU and Texas A&M, the committee's early opinion of the Dogs still appears to be a positive one.
The playoff committee released its first top 25 poll of the 2015 season on Tuesday night, and MSU found itself at No. 20 right behind SEC foes Ole Miss and Texas A&M.
I must say, I was surprised to see that much love for the maroon and white. I expected to see State somewhere around 23 to 25. MSU is ranked 24th in the AP poll and 25th in the coaches, which they recently snuck into after the bye week.
It goes to show the committee sees what a lot of other poll voters don't, that MSU is a last second missed field goal away from sitting at 7-1 and still in the thick of the SEC West race.
Teams aren't rewarded for close losses (nor should they be) but it's good to see the committee take into account the strength of schedule of SEC teams. Alabama was another surprise within the conference, coming in at No. 4.
With home games against No. 18 Ole Miss and No. 4 Alabama remaining on the back end of MSU's schedule, there is plenty of opportunity to keep climbing the ladder.
MSU finished the 2014 season ranked No. 7 in the final College Football Playoff rankings.