A crazy week in college football featured shocking losses for Oklahoma and Michigan.
So far this season, there is a look of real parity in between the conferences. The Big 10 leads the way with 5 teams in the top 25. The ACC, Big 12, and SEC all have 4 teams. The PAC 12 and American each have 3. Georgia Tech-Miami, Texas Tech-West Virginia, Oklahoma-Texas, Auburn-LSU, Navy-Memphis, and Utah-USC are this week’s top contests.
Receiving Consideration: Texas A&M (4-2), Georgia Tech (3-1), Stanford (4-2), Memphis (4-1), South Carolina (4-2), Houston (4-1), Utah (4-1), West Virginia (3-2), Louisville (4-2), and Iowa (4-2).
25. Texas Tech 4-1 [Last Week: NR, Defeated Kansas 65-19]—The Red Raiders’ visit to Morgantown this week will definitely be a matchup worth watching.
24. Kentucky 5-1 [Last Week: NR, Defeated Missouri 40-34]—Mark Stoops has the Wildcats playing competitive football. A narrow loss to Florida is the only blemish.
23. Navy 5-0 [Last Week: NR, Defeated Air Force 48-45]—The American Conference boasts a nice assembly of top-tier teams so far in 2017.
22. UCF 4-0 [Last Week: #23, Defeated Cincinnati 51-23]—East Carolina should not be much of a challenge for UCF this week.
21. NC State 5-1 [Last Week: #25, Defeated Louisville 39-25]—Ryan Finley and NC State are a team on the rise. They get to face Clemson at home in what may be the toughest contest ahead for the Tigers.
20. San Diego State 6-0 [Last Week: #20, Defeated UNLV 41-10]—SDSU faces a test this week against a down Boise State team.
19. South Florida 5-0 [Last Week: #19, BYE]—The Bulls were off this week ahead of their contest against Cincinnati.
18. Michigan 4-1 [Last Week: #7, Lost to Michigan State 14-10]—Five turnovers spurred a loss against the Spartans and a heavy tumble for the program. Harbaugh cannot seem to coach the Wolverines to a successful offense.
17. Michigan State 4-1 [Last Week NR: Defeated Michigan 14-10]—The Spartans created upheaval in the Big 10 by knocking off the Wolverines. Can they build on that momentum at Minnesota this week?
16. Oklahoma State 4-1 [Last Week #18: BYE]—The Cowboys had a bye week and should easily dispatch of Baylor this week.
15. Notre Dame 4-1 [Last Week: #21 Defeated UNC 33-10]—The Fighting Irish get a big jump not due to the merit of this past week’s win but because their W over Michigan State and L to Georgia continue to look better and better. Brian Kelly, previously very much on the hot seat, now looks pretty safe.
14. Virginia Tech 5-1 [Last Week: #16, Defeated Boston College 23-10]—Virginia Tech may still be in control of its own playoff destiny. Winning out would give the Hokies another shot against Clemson.
13. Miami 4-0 [Last Week: #15, Defeated Florida State 24-20]—A great game against Florida State puts Miami in a position to really make some noise in the ACC. They cannot look past Georgia Teach, though.
12. USC 5-1 [Last Week: #14, Defeated Oregon State 38-10]—In a rout against the Beavers, Sam Darnold extended his streak of games throwing an interception to seven. He has thrown 10 in that time span.
11. Auburn 5-1 [Last Week: #13, Defeated Ole Miss 44-23]—This game wasn’t as close as the final score makes it seem. Auburn now looks to reverse a trend by winning in Death Valley this weekend.
10. TCU 5-0 [Last Week: #11, Defeated West Virginia 31-24]—A major win over a Big 12 contender has TCU on the rise. A trip to Kansas State poses a potential trap game this week.
9. Wisconsin 5-0 [Last Week: #10, Defeated Nebraska 38-17]—Where does Wisconsin find these backs? Jonathan Taylor is the real deal.
8. Ohio State 5-1 [Last Week: #9, Defeated Maryland 62-14]—Every week, the Buckeyes’ loss to Oklahoma looks more like a fluke. Ohio State ran through a decent Maryland team.
7. Oklahoma 4-1 [Last Week: #4, BYE]—A shocking loss to Iowa State is a major shakeup on the college football landscape. This is a bad loss, and they are only saved by a really good win over Ohio State.
6. Penn State 5-0 [Last Week: #8, Defeated Northwestern 31-7]—The game was never in doubt as the Nittany Lions handled a scrappy Northwestern team. They have an off-week before Michigan, which they will now be favored for. This team, however, does not look as good as the one-loss Buckeyes they play on the road October 28, though.
5. Washington State 6-0 [Last Week: #6, Defeated Oregon 33-10]—I’ve had my doubts about this Mike Leach coached team, but they are very much in the thick of the playoff conversation.
4. Georgia 6-0 [Last Week: #5, Defeated Vanderbilt 45-14]—The Dawgs are head-and-shoulders above everyone else in the SEC East. Kirby Smart has done a remarkable job with this program.
3. Washington 6-0 [Last Week: #3, Defeated Cal 38-7]—Cal is a solid football team, not bad but not a joke either. The Huskies steamrolled them.
2. Clemson 6-0 [Last Week: #2, Defeated Wake Forest 28-14]—The real story is the injury to QB Kelly Bryant, but the Tigers can beat Syracuse this week without him.
1. Alabama 6-0 [Last Week: #1, Defeated Texas A&M 27-12]—Did Alabama look a little more human? It’s telling that a three-score win over a respectable SEC West opponent makes the Tide look vulnerable.