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  • The CSD College Football Top 25 For Week 3 – A New #2 After Ohio State’s Loss

The CSD College Football Top 25 For Week 3 – A New #2 After Ohio State’s Loss

IMPORTANT: Something that I do differently, especially in the early season when we don’t know as much, is I don’t drop teams if they lose a game to another top 10 or top 25 team (see Auburn, who actually moved up despite losing, because they played on the road against Clemson.) To me, a loss to a top 25, especially one possession losses (Auburn, Notre Dame) is better than beating up on Rutgers and Montana (cough, cough Washington). Washington and Miami will have to beat somebody real to move ahead of Auburn and Notre Dame respectively, that’s just how I do my top 25, if you do it differently, that’s okay.

Rank Team Change Result Explanation
 1  Alabama (2-0)  None  Beat Fresno State 41-10  It’s Alabama, they destroyed Fresno State, and they’ll probably destroy Colorado State this week too. The win against Florida State is still probably the second most impressive win of the season (#1 being Ohio State on the road) and there is no way I’m moving Alabama down from this spot unless they lose.
 2  Oklahoma (2-0)  Up 3  Beat Ohio State 31-16  As mentioned above, beating Ohio State on the road is the most impressive win of the season up to this point, and Oklahoma takes over the Buckeyes spot because of it. Thanks to the Sooners’ big win, the Big 12 might not get left out of the playoff this time!
 3  Penn State (2-0)  None  Beat Pittsburgh 33-14  Penn State’s offense has worked like a well oiled machine, and even though Clemson’s win over Auburn was against a better team, Penn State stays #3. Iowa on the road in two weeks will tell us if the Nittany Lions deserve this spot, or if they will drop.
 4  Clemson (2-0)  None  Beat Auburn 14-6  No way I’m moving my preseason playoff pick out of the top four, sure it was at home, and sure it was by one possession, but like I said in the preseason, this year’s defense is even better than last year’s and they shut down Jarrett Stidham and the Tiger offense.
 5  USC (2-0)  Up 5  Beat Stanford 42-24  I said last week that I was moving USC down because of the close call with Western Michigan, but that they could earn their way back with a win, and they did just that. The Trojans dominated Stanford on all sides of the ball, and they control their own destiny to a playoff spot.
 6  Florida State (0-1)  Up 1  Bye Week  Florida State moves up one because of Ohio State’s loss despite the ‘Noles game against Arkansas State being cancelled due to hurricane Irma. With the 1 in the loss column already, they could be passed on by some, but a loss to the #1 team in the country shouldn’t drop you from 3rd to 13th (ahem, AP Voters).
 7  LSU (2-0)  Up 1  Beat Chattanooga 45-10  In Bill Connelly’s S&P+, LSU ranks #2 in the country (Florida State is #3), and for good reason. Their impressive performance in week one was followed by an FCS opponent, but LSU will go on the road to face a criminally underrated Mississippi State team. We’ll see if I have them too high, or if the AP Voters have it right for once.
 8  Ohio State (1-1)  Up 2  Lost to Oklahoma 31-16  The loser of the Ohio State-Oklahoma game was always going to fall in my rankings, I just expected it to be Oklahoma. JT Barrett was ineffective, and Baker Mayfield tore the house down on the road. Ohio State is by no means out of the playoff picture, they’ll just take a step back for now.
 9  Michigan (2-0)  None  Beat Cincinnati 36-14  Jim Harbaugh took care of work in week two against Cincinnati, so they stay where they are, right below their arch rival Buckeys. I’d be surprised if the Wolverines didn’t go into their October 21st game @ Penn State undefeated, the schedule looks manageable.
 10  Auburn (1-1)  Up 2  Lost to Clemson 14-6  Jarrett Stidham couldn’t get anything going against the Clemson defense, but going on the road to Death Valley, and holding the Clemson offense to just 14 points, and keeping it a one possession game means Auburn actually moves up in my rankings thanks to Stanford’s loss.
 11  Oklahoma State (2-0)  Up 3  Beat South Alabama 44-7  Right now I see Auburn as that buffer between the title contenders (#1-9) and the “almost theres” (#10-15) I wasn’t as high on Oklahoma State preseason, but they’ve grown on me after two impressive performances. They’ll move into the top ten with a win over Pitt.
 12  Washington 2-0)  Up 1  Beat Montana 63-7  Washington moves up one. I’m a big guy on going out and playing tough in nonconference, so I don’t punish teams for losses (See Auburn, FSU, Notre Dame) and Washington’s non-con is the most cupcake piece of garbage I’ve seen. They won’t get into the top ten until they play a real team.
 13  Wisconsin (2-0)  Down 7  Beat Florida Atlantic 31-14  Don’t let that 31-14 final fool you, Florida Atlantic had Wisconsin on the ropes for awhile. I’ve always been kind of low on Wisconsin, and last week I gave them a chance and moved them into the top ten, this week I instantly regretted it, and moved back towards my stance on Wisconsin, they struggle with cupcakes, but have an easy schedule, make the Big Ten Title Game, and then get killed.
 14  Stanford (1-1)  Down 3  Lost to USC 42-24  The Stanford-USC game obviously wasn’t non conference, but I still don’t penalize teams for losing to a top five team on the road. David Shaw has time to right the ship, and Stanford is still a contender in the Pac-12, even with the loss this early in the season.
 15  Georgia (2-0)  Up 2  Beat Notre Dame 20-19  After Auburn-Clemson ended, and Oklahoma was in control of Ohio State, I switched over to NBC, and Georgia impressed me. Jake Fromm wasn’t great, but Georgia’s two headed monster at running back kept Notre Dame’s defense honest, and I would say Georgia is the favorite in the SEC East.
 16  Notre Dame (1-1)  Down 1  Lost to Georgia 20-19  AP Voters shock me. Notre Dame lost to a minimum top-20, if not top-15 team by one point, and they drop completely out of the top 25. That’s unreasonable. Brandon Winbush looked good, and well, there really isn’t anybody from 17-130 that deserves this spot, some teams like Louisville and Mississippi State certainly have opportunities to jump Notre Dame, let’s see if they take them.
 17  Florida (0-1)  Down 1  Bye Week  Florida had their game cancelled this week because of the hurricane, and the drop one due to Georgia’s win. I mentioned earlier how I saw Auburn as the buffer between Tier one and Tier two. Right now I think Notre Dame and Florida are that buffer between tier two and three, with Tennessee this week, we will see if I was right to keep the Gators in the Top 20.
 18  TCU (2-0)  Up 7  Beat Arkansas 28-7  Like I said in the Notre Dame piece, after #15, nobody really excites me, so TCU’s win against Arkansas this week really helped their case, and they jump all the way to 18th, after the classic Gary Patterson defense returned to shut down the Razorbacks.
 19  Miami (1-0)  Down 1  Bye Week  Just like FSU and Florida, Miami’s game was cancelled this week due to the storm, and next week’s game will also be cancelled. Until then, and with just an FCS win under their belt, the Canes won’t move much.
 20  Louisville (2-0)  Down 1  Beat North Carolina 47-35  Lamar Jackson looked really good on the road, but the defense gave up a lot against a North Carolina team that struggled against Cal. Louisville moves down a spot thanks to TCU, but this game against Clemson could move them into the top 15 with a win.
 21  Kansas State (2-0)  None  Beat Charlotte 55-7  Central Arkansas in week one, Charlotte in week two, Kansas State stays right where they are at #21. Bill Snyder and company have Vanderbilt this week, which could be a very interesting game, we’ll see if this team is for real, or not as the Wildcats go on the road.
 22  Mississippi State (2-0)  NEW  Beat Louisiana Tech 57-21  Right now Mississippi State is the #1 darkhorse team in America, and they’ll probably lose to LSU on Saturday, but for now, I’m keeping them in here, so if they do pull the upset, I can say I told you so, because this team deserves to be ranked after a complete pounding of a Louisiana Tech team that has been at the top of Conference USA for years.
 23  Oregon (2-0)  Down 3  Beat Nebraska 42-35  The defense really struggled, and even though they got the win, I’m still trying to figure out this Oregon team. The Ducks will go to Laramie to face Josh Allen and Wyoming this week, and then they will begin conference play, starting with Arizona State.
 24  UCLA (2-0)  NEW  Beat Hawai’i 56-23  I didn’t want to put them in after last week, but Josh Allen had another crazy game, and I just had to put the Bruins into my top 25. They’ve got Memphis (who is coming off of a bye week due to Irma) on the road before Pac-12 play begins, potentially a look-ahead spot?
 25  Virginia Tech (2-0)  Down 3  Beat Deleware 27-0  The Bud Foster defense blanketed Deleware, but what the box score won’t tell you, is the offense struggled to move the ball down the field, even against an FCS opponent. They’ll have two more cupcakes before facing my #4 team in the country, Clemson.

Dropped Out: #23 Tennessee, and #24 Colorado (No fault of their own, I just think Mississippi State and UCLA are better teams right now, they are right on the cusp, so they can certainly earn their way back)

Just Missed The Cut

 #26 Tennessee – Had a fine week, I just think there are 25 better teams, a win against Florida will certainly get them back into the Top 25.

#27 South Carolina – Wins over NC State and Missouri, and they have Kentucky this weekend, they are a darkhorse contender in the crowded SEC East

#28 USF – I never had them ranked to start the year, and they haven’t done anything over the first two weeks to convince me they deserve to be ranked

#29 Colorado – I  put them kind of as a knee jerk reaction for beating Colorado State, who beat Oregon State, but after Oregon State’s performance this week, that win is a little less impressive

#30 Washington State – They probably should’ve lost to Boise State, but the crazy comeback keeps them in the top 30, they should easily take care of Oregon State and Nevada the next two weeks.

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