This week might have been the hardest rankings yet, as almost every team from 16-25 lost or weren’t playing. We have six new teams in the rankings, some leaping pretty high from the status of the unranked.
1. Texas (1) – The Longhorns proved that last week wasn’t a fluke, totally destroying Missouri and leaving no doubt to their legitimacy. But of course the schedule doesn’t get any easier with Okie State.
2. Alabama (2) – The Crimson Tide have an annoying habit of letting mediocre competition hang out. That’s going to eventually cost them.
3. Penn State (3) – It took awhile for Penn State to wake up, but it eventually had its way with Michigan. Huge game coming up at Ohio State.
4. Oklahoma (5) – The Sooners overcame any hangover they might have had by disposing of a good Kansas team. That, plus Texas’ success, knocks them up a rung.
5. Texas Tech (4) – The Red Raiders are still unbeaten, but they aren’t exactly winning style points, struggling with a bad Texas A&M team after going overtime at home against a mediocre Nebraska squad.
6. USC (6) – USC earned some style points, putting 69 up on hapless Washington State. Too bad Wazzu might be the worst team in Division I-A.
7. Florida (7) – Gators got to take a step back and observe some of the carnage. Florida is still in pretty good position.
8. Ohio State (10) – The Buckeyes finally broke out and played the way they were expected to in the preseason, drilling Michigan State. Big showdown with Penn State awaits.
9. Georgia (9) – Kind of like Texas Tech, Georgia isn’t exactly doing itself favors in the style point department.
10. Oklahoma State (11) – No letdown for the Cowboys, who dispatched Baylor easily. They have a huge showdown with nemesis Texas upcoming.
11. Utah (13) – Utes have been quiet, but they keep winning and now seem to be the next BCS buster possibility.
12. LSU (14) – It won’t make headlines, but the Tigers’ win over South Carolina was definitely no joke.
13. Boise State (16) – Another team that’s quietly moved up the ranks, Boise State made short work of Hawaii Friday.
14. South Florida (20) – Talk about being in the right spot at the right time, the Bulls make a huge jump up, thanks to everyone else around them losing, by beating a bad Syracuse team.
15. TCU (NR) – A humongous jump for the Horned Frogs, but a well-deserved one. They kicked the living stuff out of undefeated BYU, and their only loss is to Oklahoma.
16. BYU (8) – Had to place the Cougars here below TCU on priniciple. Still, its crazy to see three Mountain West teams this high in the poll.
17. Ball State (22) – Another mid-major, the Cardinals moved up five slots without playing. Of course, being undefeated will do that for ya.
18. Pittsburgh (NR) – The Panthers jump up pretty high from the masses of the unranked thanks to a fifth straight win, blowing out a good Navy team, plus a lot of chaos.
19. Kansas (15) – I didn’t drop the Jayhawks much, as they performed pretty well in a losing effort at Oklahoma. However, a loss vs. Texas Tech next week will probably dump them from the rankings.
20. Tulsa (NR) – The Golden Hurricane may have the most prolific offense in the nation, as they put up nearly 500 yards in the first half Saturday against UTEP. FYI, Division I-A schools in Oklahoma are a combined 20-1 this year.
21. Missouri (12) – I penalized the Tigers more than Kansas because they weren’t even in the game with Texas. It was 28-0 early in the second quarter and Mizzou was never within 25 from that point on.
22. Georgia Tech (NR) – The ACC is a jumbled mess of decent but not spectacular teams. The Yellow Jackets get the nod due to quality road victories over Boston College and Clemson.
23. Boston College (NR) – The Golden Eagles never get any hype, but come every October, they seem to be right in the mix.
24. Oregon (25) – The Ducks didn’t play, which was probably a good thing considering all the carnage in this area of the rankings.
25. Florida State (NR) – The Seminoles aren’t impressive, but they have won three straight since looking meek against Wake Forest. That’s good enough for now.
Under consideration: Virginia Tech, Minnesota, California
Dropped out: No. 17 Virginia Tech (lost to Boston College), No. 18 California (lost to Arizona), No. 19 Michigan State (lost to Ohio State), No. 21 Wake Forest (lost to Maryland), No. 23 North Carolina (lost to Virginia), No. 24 Vanderbilt (lost to Georgia).