The field for the College Football Playoff is beginning to thin. Who's got the inside track to finish in the top four? Find out in this week's Power Rankings.

By Martin Rickman
October 27, 2014

Every neighborhood had one: the house that would give out pencils or raisins or stickers instead of candy on Halloween. You’d still go by their house in the hopes they finally wised up and changed their ways, but without fail there you were, stuck with one of those faded yellow Pencilmates (with the graphite that broke off when you started writing anyway) instead of the good stuff.

It was still something, so you couldn’t put it with the houses that deliberately turned their lights off and ignored the doorbell, pretending not to be home rather than having the courage to face the kids and say, “Nah, we don’t give out anything on Halloween.” The Raisins Lady deserved some praise, but it was never a contender for Top Trick Or Treating Spot.

That’s the part of the season we’ve reached in the Power Rankings. There are teams out there who have rightfully earned a place in the top 25, but they’re not going to make the playoff. They’ve either hurt themselves too much and too early, don’t (or won’t) have the wins to make it count, or in the case of a team like Marshall, just don’t play anybody good enough to prove it. You can’t skip over them because they still might surprise you, but we’ve come to know what to expect.

As for everybody else, they’re going house to house and filling up their pillowcases with all the sugary deliciousness. In just a few weeks, they’ll be dumping out their bags on the coffee table to compare what they got, and some teams are going to end up with a better haul than others.

• STAPLES: Is the SEC West as good as we thought? Punt, Pass & Pork

Next five: Wisconsin, UCLA, Georgia Tech, Stanford, Missouri

• ​ELLIS: Marcus Mariota separates from the pack in Heisman Watch

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