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CFB Transitive Property Report - Week 10

Checking in on who’s beaten whom this year in college football

NCAA Football: Syracuse at Clemson
Clemson is still the nation’s transitive property champions
Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time to take another look at the college football landscape through the eyes of the transitive property. This is your source for creating outrageous arguments for your team’s superiority over its rivals. If you’re not sure what you’re looking at, you might want to go back and check out my last post, where I explain what you’ll find below and how to have some fun with it.


Transitivity Rankings

Only five teams remain unbeaten at this point in the season, and these five (Clemson, Alabama, Michigan, Western Michigan, and Washington) occupy the top five spots in the rankings. Right behind them are Louisville and Troy, both of whom have lost to Clemson and nobody else. All the way at the bottom we find the “Hapless Six” - teams with either no FBS wins or only wins against fellow hapless teams. Everyone else is stuck in a free-for-all in the middle, with each team having beaten (in the transitive sense) every other team in the group.

Due to their aforementioned victories over Louisville and Troy, Clemson is still leading the combined transitivity rankings (they actually dropped to number 2 behind Alabama after week 8, but regained the top spot the following week). Their lead is somewhat precarious, though, and simply winning out will not be enough to maintain it. They are safe so long as either Louisville or Troy continues to win. However, losses by those two teams may spell the end of the Tigers’ reign, as their average win length is around a half-game worse than the Tide’s. Michigan is in strong position to overtake them as well.

Interactive Path Finder

On to my favorite section of the post, the interactive path finder! This is where you uncover your team’s transitive paths to victory over any potential opponent. The longest path of the week is Iowa State’s journey to defeat Colorado, checking in at 12 games and visiting each time zone in the lower 48.