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Alabama holds onto No. 1 spot in Power Rankings after Week 13

College football is setting up for its big finale. Heading into the drama of rivalry week, how do the top teams compare in Power Rankings?

Finales are tricky. How do you sum up something that meant so much and had so much work put into it with one episode or a single event? By their very nature, finales only invite failure and disappointment.

If you leave it up to interpretation (think The Sopranos) you run the risk of not saying enough for your viewer. If you check off all the boxes and make it neat and tidy (Breaking Bad, for instance), you’re not giving your audience enough credit. The shows that get canceled and really shouldn’t have been -- Freaks and Geeks comes to mind, and more recently, the short-lived Fox show Enlisted -- sometimes get it right on accident. There’s something more natural about an unexpected finish.

Finales are, well, final, but when they’re scripted, they don’t feel that way. Thankfully we don’t have to worry about that with college football. The end of the regular season has plenty of storylines that need closure, but even when we think we have it all figured out, something like the 2013 Iron Bowl happens. As finales go for the general college football viewing public, that was perfect. Unless of course you’re an Alabama fan.

It’s time to see what happens when we close the book on the 2014 regular season before conference championships effectively put a coda on the year and set the stage for the first College Football Playoff.

• ELLIS: Bowl Projections: Can Baylor make late playoff surge?

1. Alabama Crimson Tide

PREVIOUS: 1

RECORD: 10-1

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2. Florida State Seminoles

PREVIOUS: 2

RECORD: 11-0

3. Oregon Ducks

PREVIOUS: 3

RECORD: 10-1

Next game: Saturday at Oregon State

4. Baylor Bears

PREVIOUS: 4

RECORD: 9-1

Next game: Saturday vs. Texas Tech

5. Mississippi State Bulldogs

PREVIOUS: 5

RECORD: 10-1

6. TCU Horned Frogs

PREVIOUS: 6

RECORD: 9-1

Next game: Thursday at Texas

7. Ohio State Buckeyes

PREVIOUS: 7

RECORD: 10-1

Next game: Saturday vs. Michigan

8. Michigan State Spartans

PREVIOUS: 8

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Saturday at Penn State

9. Georgia Bulldogs

PREVIOUS: 10

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Saturday vs. Georgia Tech

10. Kansas State Wildcats

PREVIOUS: 11

RECORD: 8-2

Next game: Saturday vs. Kansas

11. UCLA Bruins

PREVIOUS: 12

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Friday vs. Stanford

12. Arizona State Sun Devils

PREVIOUS: 13

RECORD: 9-2

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Next game: Friday at Arizona

13. Arizona Wildcats

PREVIOUS: 14

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Friday vs. Arizona State

14. Wisconsin Badgers

PREVIOUS: 15

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Saturday vs. Minnesota

15. Auburn Tigers

PREVIOUS: 16

RECORD: 8-3

Next game: Saturday at Alabama

16. Colorado State Rams

PREVIOUS: 18

RECORD: 10-1

Next game: Friday at Air Force

17. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

PREVIOUS: 19

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Saturday at Georgia

18. Marshall Thundering Herd

PREVIOUS: 17

RECORD: 11-0

Next game: Saturday vs. Western Kentucky

19. Missouri Tigers

PREVIOUS: 21

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Friday vs. Arkansas

20. Oklahoma Sooners

PREVIOUS: 23

RECORD: 8-3

Next game: Dec. 6 vs. Oklahoma State

21. Ole Miss Rebels

PREVIOUS: 9

RECORD: 8-3

Next game: Saturday vs. Mississippi State

22. Clemson Tigers

RECORD: 8-3

Next game: Saturday vs. South Carolina

23. Louisville Cardinals

RECORD: 8-3

Next game: Saturday vs. Kentucky

24. Boise State Broncos

RECORD: 9-2

Next game: Saturday vs. Utah State

25. Minnesota Golden Gophers

RECORD: 8-3

Last game: Beat Nebraska, 28-24 Next game: Saturday at Wisconsin

Next five: Nebraska, Arkansas, LSU, USC, Memphis

• STAPLES: Rivalry week set to bring playoff picture into focus