What an insane week of college football it was, as No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 all lost – Clemson, Michigan and Washington all went down. But since they all lost and there aren’t exactly a slew of once-beaters, they aren’t falling far. Alabama is just a machine, and Ohio State is back rolling again.
The Crimson Tide, coming off their emotional battle and 10-0 victory at LSU blasted Mississippi State to make it 10-0 on the campaign. Next up is Chattanooga in Tuscaloosa.
2. OHIO STATE
For a second straight week the Buckeyes were smoking. In the blowout of Maryland, it was 45-3 at the half. The Spartans may be in for a beat down, as Ohio State is surely sore over last season’s results. Then come the Wolverines.
It was a crushing loss for the Tigers, as they fell 43-42 in Death Valley to Pitt. All of their first downs came via the pass, then Clemson couldn’t run out the clock. The Tigers head to Wake Forest and then host South Carolina. Their playoff hopes aren’t dead.
The Cardinals came out flying in the second half and pulled away from Wake Forest after a shaky first 30. Now comes the big showdown with Houston on Thursday night, conjuring memories of Phi Slamma Jamma vs. The Doctors of Dunk.
The Huskies went down to Southern Cal for their first loss of the season. But a win at Cal and then Washington State in the Apple Cup would put them in the PAC-12 Championship Game with a shot at the playoff.
The Wolverines suffered a heart-breaking one- point loss to Iowa and now sit at 9-1. Indiana comes to town, and then it’s the big one with Ohio State. If they win those two and then the Big Ten Championship Game, a playoff berth should await.
The Badgers took another big step towards the Big Ten Championship Game with an impressive win over Illinois. Expect the Badgers to be 9-2 after visiting Purdue. They have an outside playoff shot if some things were to break right.
8. WESTERN MICHIGAN
It’s 10-0 after a Tuesday night win over Kent State. A major bowl is in the card if the Broncos can keep taking care of business. Buffalo comes to town this week, as 11-0 is in WMU’s sights.
The Runnin’ Utes cranked up the offense in a 49-26 win over Arizona State to stay right in the thick of the PAC-12 race. Next up is Oregon on Saturday, then Colorado. Utah must avoid the look-ahead. How funny would that have sounded six years ago.
What a job Mike McIntyre has done in Boulder. The Buffs are 8-2 and host Washington State in a possible PAC- 12 title game preview. Then Utah comes to Boulder, likely to decide who goes to play the Cougars or Washington.
11. PENN STATE
The Nittany Lions avoided an upset scare at Indiana and with the win improve to 8-2 on the season.
The Sooners blasted Baylor 45-24 to remain undefeated in Big XII play. After the 1-2 start, Bob Stoops did a great job keeping his team focused and they are sniffing another conference title. It’s a biggie Saturday at West Virginia.
13. WEST VIRGINIA
It was a big win for the Mountaineers over Texas as they remain right in the thick of the Big XII race. Now comes a monster showdown with Oklahoma in Morgantown.
14. OKLAHOMA STATE
The Cowboys are playing good. They survived a one-point scare against Texas Tech and now head to TCU and Oklahoma to close out the season. If they win them both, the Big XII title will be theirs.
15. TEXAS A&M
The Aggies just can’t beat the Mississippi schools. Losses to Mississippi State and Ole Miss the last two weeks have crushed their championship dreams. A&M hosts the Road Runners of UTSA this week, then LSU comes to town.
It was a tough loss for the Tigers in Athens, as they fell to Georgia 13-7, knocking them out of SEC Championship Game contention. Alabama A&M is next and then comes the Iron Bowl in Tuscaloosa.
17. BOISE STATE
It’s another outstanding season for the Broncos, who routed Hawaii 52-16 on the island to make it 9-1. UNLV comes to town before a big showdown with Air Force.
After falling to Alabama, the Tigers got a huge bounce-back win over Arkansas. The Hogs have had the Tigers number these last couple of years. It’s a big one Saturday with Florida, as the SEC East is on the line for the Gators.
Big Red, staggered from the beat down by Ohio State, edged Minnesota 24-17 and now take on Maryland. Wisconsin has the path to the Big Ten Championship Game, but if Nebraska wins out, the Huskers would go with a Badgers loss.
The Volunteers cranked up the offense in a 49-36 win over Kentucky. Tennessee sits at 7-3. Wins over Missouri and Vanderbilt and a Florida loss to LSU would put the Vols in Atlanta.
21. SOUTHERN CAL
The Trojans got their biggest win of the season with an upset of Washington, knocking the Huskies from the ranks of the unbeaten. USC has come a long way since the trouncing by Bama. They go to UCLA, then host the Irish.
The Gators avoided the upset and Will Muschamp vengeance with a 20-7 win over the Gamecocks in The Swamp. Florida needs an upset win at LSU to make it back to the SEC Championship Game for a second straight season.
23. VIRGINIA TECH
The Hokies got dominated by Tech in Blacksburg, with the Yellow Jackets racing to a 30-7 lead and winning 30-20. They head to Notre Dame this week, then close out with the Wahoos.
24. NORTH DAKOTA STATE
The five-time defending Division 1-AA (now FCS) national champions are rolling once again, even after losing heralded quarterback Carson Wentz, the second pick in the draft.
25. NORTH CAROLINA
The Tar Heels had a 14-point lead get away and lost 28-27 at rival Duke last Thursday. It stung double with Virginia Tech’s loss to Tech. Carolina hosts The Citadel and then N.C. State.