Minnesota Ranked Ahead of 4 Major College Football Playoff Contenders in Week 12 MaxDiff Fan Poll

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - NOVEMBER 09: Quarterback Tanner Morgan #2 of the Minnesota Golden Gophers looks to pass against the Penn State Nittany Lions during the third quarter at TCFBank Stadium on November 09, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

While the 13-member College Football Playoff Selection Committee hasn't shown the unbeaten Minnesota Golden Gophers a lot of love in 2019, the latest MaxDiff Fan Perceptions Poll believes in the Gophers in a major way.

As an unofficial voice of the nation's college football fandom from a less formalized perspective, the Week 12 MaxDiff Top-25 Poll is derived from more than 1,400 fans' opinions that weight in on which teams are the most overrated and underrated relative to their official rank.

Even though the Gophers climbed to the No. 8 spot in the second CFP Rankings of the season, the latest MaxDiff Poll highlights a staunch disagreement by voting the Gophers as in fourth-best team in the country – ahead of the CFP Selection Committee's No. 4 Georgia, No. 5 Alabama, No. 6 Oregon, and No. 7 Utah.

The Gophers certainly impressed quite a number of people with their Week 11 upset win over then-No. 4 Penn State as 7.5-point home underdogs, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. However, last Saturday's win was Minnesota's first victory over a ranked opponent and just its third win over an opponent with a winning record as of Nov. 13, 2019.

Despite avoiding top-25 competition through 10 weeks of the 2019 season, the Gophers will certainly have their shot to further prove themselves in the month of November. The Gophers' November schedule currently features three ranked matchups, with Penn State serving as the first.

The Gophers hit the road to battle No. 20 Iowa (No. 19 per MaxDiff) as 3-point away underdogs this Saturday, with a season finale against rival No. 14 Wisconsin (No. 14 per MaxDiff) awaiting them back in Minneapolis in Week 14.

Minnesota Big Ten Championship Scenarios

At 9-0 and 6-0 in Big Ten play, the Gophers have the luxury of multiple scenarios that would send them to the 2019 Big Ten championship game.

If Minnesota wins its next two games, the Gophers clinch the Big Ten West. With a Week 12 win over Iowa, and either a Wisconsin loss to Nebraska in Week 12 or a Wisconsin loss to Purdue in Week 13, Minnesota clinches the Big Ten West as well.

If Iowa wins out and both Wisconsin and Minnesota lose in Week 13, a Week 14 Wisconsin win over Minnesota would send Iowa (6-3 Big Ten, with the head-to-head win advantage over Minnesota) to the Big Ten title game instead of Minnesota (6-3 Big Ten) and Wisconsin (5-4 Big Ten).

Minnesota College Football Playoff Odds

At +10000 odds to win it all this year, Minnesota currently has the third-worst odds to win the 2020 CFP among the 11 remaining teams, leading only Baylor (+12500) and Michigan (+12500).

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David Hayes is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David Hayes also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username DavidWHayes. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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