Another Saturday, another wonderful slate of college football to grace the airwaves. But, this Saturday has passed, so you know what that means – AP released their new weekly rankings. Of course, these college football top 25 rankings have their fair share of head-scratchers. But you need not worry, dear reader, because I am here to give my own spin on these rankings for your enjoyment!
Moving forward, this will be a weekly series to catch you up with the fast-moving world of college football. Buckle up, make sure to check out last week’s college football top 25 rankings and get ready for a fun run this season! Below, we will be breaking down the AP college football top 25 rankings for Week 7.
Breaking Down the AP College Football Top 25 Rankings
The triumphant return for one of the top programs to grace the field in recent years. The Bulldogs have proven they can survive the close games, and win decisively in other contests.
2. Ohio State
The Buckeyes had trouble for what seemed like .02 seconds against the Spartans. That’s a good summation of their season- the very little struggle against opponents. But then again, have they fought an opponent on their level yet?
Jimbo Fisher almost pulled off another miracle upset for two years in a row. The Aggies played a close game, but Nick Saban and company live to fight another day. Their undefeated record only furthers their chances for the playoffs, but they slid in the rankings from this close game.
Ah yes, Clemson rounding out a familiar top-four spot in the rankings. While familiar, I do not think it’s justified. Other teams fall in rankings due to “quality losses”… but Clemson shoots to this high of a spot for a “quality win” over Boston College?
First of all, they had a somewhat close game in the first half against Indiana. Which was a bit concerning. Secondly, Michigan being a top-five program is nothing new. But, let’s wait until they fight stronger conference foes. If they choke down the stretch, all I’m saying is ” I told you so”.
The Volunteers are now 2-0 against the best conference in college football, aka the SEC. Their meteoric rise up the polls has been as fun to watch as the games they play. The Vols are riding high and have a tough slate against their fellow ranked conference members.
The Trojans fell a spot, but I don’t think it has much to do with them, more so that Tennessee faced a tougher opponent last week. The Trojans handily beat the Washington Huskies last week, and the Huskies have certainly been stumbling from a lack of grace lately. Lincoln Riley still coaches the best team in the PAC-12.
8. Oklahoma State
“Oklahoma, where the grass is green”… at least for the Cowboys. Texas Tech continues to play tight games against the Big 12. While Okie State held off the Red Raiders, it didn’t help their rankings. I wouldn’t be upset with switching spots with Clemson in this week’s iteration of said rankings.
9. Ole Miss
You’ll constantly hear that the SEC is the best conference in college football. However, Ole Miss tranced Vanderbilt… which isn’t saying much for them this week. While I understand this lack of competition holding their spot in the rankings, it doesn’t explain how Clemson jumped to the fourth spot.
10. Penn State
To me, the Nittany Lions should always be in the top 25. Furthermore, they should consistently be in the top 10. If neither of these two criteria are met, then call the national guard, because something isn’t right.
Chip Kelly is back? And by extension, the Bruins are back? Stop rubbing your eyes, dear reader. The UCLA Bruins are back in the top 15 and climbing. However, they play Oregon next week, and that game will surely decide both teams’ fate in the rankings going forward.
Oregon might be “Ore-gone” if they lose next week to UCLA. The Ducks have been at odds with themselves and with the Associated Press this season as they have struggled to prove their dominance. Just because they bully teams they should beat, doesn’t mean they can hang with the big kids. Well, they get their chance to prove it soon.
The Horned Frogs probably took the cake for the most entertaining game this week. They squared off against the highly-touted Kansas Jayhawks in Lawrence. However, the long-distance trip didn’t show any signs of jet lag for the Horned Frogs, as they bested the Jayhawks, 38-31.
14. Wake Forest
Well, in last week’s rankings I wrote about how the Demon Deacons would rise in the rankings from here on out. But, I did not think it would move in increments of one spot at a time. They trampled over Army in week six, and will hopefully climb the rankings faster going forward.
15. North Carolina State
Once again, the official rankings baffle me. How is it that they sled down a spot in the rankings, even though they won against Florida State? Why does the AP punish teams for winning? The Wolfpack can compete, ain’t no doubt about it.
16. Mississippi State
Once again, Mike Leach can do no wrong, in my eyes. The Mississippi State Bulldogs are rising the rankings after hammering the Arkansas Razorbacks. But we shouldn’t sleep on Mike Leach. The effect he has on programs is real. And to further bolster his legacy, he is proving he can bring his magic to the SEC.
17. Kansas State
Iowa State gave them a run for their money, but the Wildcats still hung in there until the very end and escaped with a victory. The Wildcats find ways to win and this new era of Kansas being a football state is fun to watch. Let’s see them continue this for the rest of the year.
Somehow, we’re here. While it is fun to have the ACC get more representation here outside of Clemson, the Orange dominated Wagner. You are not alone if you’re wondering who the Wagner Seahawks are. With that being said, does that mean that the Syracuse Orange is a top-25 program? I’ll leave that up to you to decide.
A truly tough loss to TCU this past weekend makes the Jayhawks slip down to the current spot. However, they still had a good team outing against the Horned Frogs that has me and the Associated Press still believing in the Jayhawks. Conference play will only get tougher for them, but each victory should prove beneficial to their ranking.
The Utes fell to the Bruins this past weekend and are feeling the consequences of losing. Of note, the second loss on the season still warrants a spot in the top twenty. This past weekend does raise the question if the Utes can walk the walk this season.
The Bearcats are consistently winning, outside of one loss this year. But, they are seemingly fighting for their life to stay in the rankings. If they find themselves ranked higher after moving to the Big 12, it would just go to show the bias towards the Group-of-Five conferences.
Admittingly, I am very biased against the Longhorns. But, there isn’t much for me to dispute this week as they trampled the Oklahoma Sooners, 49-0. Oh wait, I forgot that Oklahoma is dead in the water this year. So, no, I don’t think it justifies this ranking.
The SEC’s Wildcats have been fun to watch this year. That’s why it’s a shame they’ve lost two weeks in a row and have now fallen to the edge of the rankings. But, of course, these count as “quality losses” so the Wildcats will hang in here for now.
The last two spots are surprises for everyone. If you would have told me that Illinois would be ranked this year, I would have thought I was in a coma and woke up in a different reality. My point is, nobody saw this one coming.
25. James Madison
The Sun Belt is proving that they are serious contenders in the Group-of-Five. Additionally, James Madison leaped to the FBS this year and has already found itself in the rankings. Hats off to the Sun Belt and to the Dukes as well.