Ohio State ranked sixth in the first ranking, dropped to 13th after losing to Iowa and moved to ninth after beating Michigan State. It stayed ninth last week after beating Illinois.
The final playoff ranking will be announced at noon Sunday on ESPN. The two semifinal games are the Sugar Bowl and Rose Bowl. Both games will be played on Jan. 1. The national championship game will take place Jan. 8 in Atlanta.
The rest of the rankings include: No. 9 Penn State; No. 10 Southern California; No. 11 TCU; No. 12 Stanford; No. 13 Washington; No. 14 Central Florida; No. 15 Notre Dame; No. 16 Michigan State; No. 17 LSU; No. 18 Washington State; No. 19 Oklahoma State; No. 20 Memphis; No. 21 Northwestern; No. 22 Virginia Tech; No. 23 Mississippi State; No. 24 N.C. State; and No. 25 Fresno State.
If the Buckeyes beat Wisconsin, their resume could be compared against Alabama if it comes down to those teams for the final spot in the playoff.
Ohio State would have victories over No. 4 Wisconsin, No. 9 Penn State, No. 16 Michigan State and losses to Oklahoma and unranked Iowa.
Alabama, which doesn’t play again, would have victories over No. 17 LSU, No. 23 Mississippi State and No. 25 Fresno State and a loss to Auburn.