Georgia is No. 1 in the College Football Playoff selection committee’s initial rankings of the season.
The rankings, unveiled Tuesday night, have the Bulldogs one spot ahead of Alabama.
Both teams are undefeated and currently on course to meet in the SEC Championship game in Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Notre Dame, whose only loss was by one point to Georgia in September, is ranked No. 3 by the committee. Defending national champion and once-beaten Clemson is No. 4.
The rest of the committee’s top 10: Oklahoma at No. 5, Ohio State at No. 6, Penn State at No. 7, TCU at No. 8, Wisconsin at No. 9 and Miami at No. 10.
Although media and coaches' polls have been ranking teams since August, the selection committee's rankings are the ones that count in ultimately deciding which teams qualify for the four-team playoff that determines the national championship.
Road to Atlanta: UGA’s three routes to the playoff
The committee will re-rank the teams each week through Dec. 3, when it will place the top four in the national semifinals, which this season will be played in the Rose and Sugar bowls on New Year’s Day. The semifinal winners will meet for the national title in Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Jan. 8.
The AJC’s Tim Tucker keeps you updated on the latest happenings on the Road to Atlanta and college football’s national championship game. You’ll find more on myAJC.com.