The college football season is just over one month away, and while neither the AP Poll nor the Coaches' Poll has been released, we do have one major indicator to take a look at - ESPN's 'Football Power Index.' The Worldwide Leader has put together a formula that does its best to predict a team's performance based on a number of factors, including strength of schedule. Here's a quick definition of the measure:
The Football Power Index (FPI) is a measure of team strength that is meant to be the best predictor of a team's performance going forward for the rest of the season. FPI represents how many points above or below average a team is. Projected results are based on 10,000 simulations of the rest of the season using FPI, results to date, and the remaining schedule. Ratings and projections update daily.
It won't surprise anyone to see that Ohio State, which won last year's College Football Playoff, is on top. The Buckeyes are followed by Alabama, Baylor, TCU and LSU. Georgia, Oregon, Texas A&M, Ole Miss and Arkansas round out the top ten. Here are the top 20, per ESPN.
Oddly enough, even though Alabama is ranked second, the Crimson Tide is predicted to win just 8.7 games - most likely because of its top-ranked strength of schedule. If you're wondering, the team with the easiest schedule in the top 20 is Baylor.
You can check out the entire Football Power Index here.