College Football Rankings: Top 25, week 5
Autumn is officially in the air, and conference showdowns littered the schedule on the last weekend of September. Four games matched two teams from The Tailgater Top 25 Poll against one another — #19 Ole Miss at #1 Alabama, #16(t) South Carolina at #22 UCF, #16(t) Oklahoma at #25 Notre Dame, and #5 LSU at #14 Georgia.
We also saw #2 Oregon, #7 Ohio State, #13 Washington and #14(t) Oklahoma State in their first conference action of the season; all but the Cowboys managed to win against their league rivals, Mike Gundy’s team falling 30-21 at West Virginia. That result led to the most precipitous drop in the Tailgater poll this week, as Oklahoma State went from 14th completely out of the top 25 into the land of “Also Receiving Votes”.
Before we analyze any further, though, here’s how our ballots combined to form the Week 5 poll after the conclusion of the first month of the 2013 regular season:
ALSO RECEIVING VOTES: Oklahoma State (4), Virginia Tech (1)
The other major fall in the rankings was endured by LSU, who lost a 44-41 shootout at Georgia and fell seven spots from 5th to 12th. The drop left only Alabama and Georgia in the top ten this week — the first time this season that the league has featured fewer than three teams in the top ten.
The biggest beneficiary of the movement this week is the Pac-12, which now has four teams — #2 Oregon, #3 Stanford, #7(t) UCLA and #10(t) Washington — within the top ten slots of the poll. Georgia also enjoyed a five-spot bump after beating the Tigers between the hedges, the largest individual climb up the ladder this week. (Texas Tech had the second-biggest surge, climbing from 22nd to 18th this week without even playing a game.)
The movement was most noticeable at the bottom of the poll, where four new teams climbed into the rankings this week to replace four others that lost this weekend. Arizona State, the team that finally led USC to fire Lane Kiffin after a 62-41 beatdown of the Trojans in Tempe, joins undefeated Northern Illinois and Maryland in the poll for the first time this year. All three are tied for 22nd with seven points in the polling. Michigan State also re-entered the poll after a week’s absence, tied with UCF for the final slot in the top 25.
Our individual ballots are below.