College Football Power Rankings: Georgia, Oregon make big moves as Michigan State slides
Dennis Dodd's new college football rankings see the SEC and Big Ten dominating the field
It's early, but it's also not a surprise.
The young season is on track to be the most explosive in history. Through the first full two weeks, teams averaging 32.8 points per game. That would obliterate the record of 30.08 points per team in 2016.
There's a long way to go but all the indicators are there. There are already two 1,000-yard passers in K.J. Carta-Samuels of Colorado State and Cole McDonald of Hawaii. Wisconsin's Jonathan Taylor is on pace to challenge Barry Sanders' single-season rushing record (2,628). (If he keeps going this way, Taylor will reach 2,587 yards.)
Twelve teams are averaging 50 points per game. The last teams to do that over a full season were Florida State and Baylor in 2013. You won't find the Noles or Bears in this week's Power Rankings, however.
You will also find the SEC and Big Ten each with five teams in. Arizona State is in the Power Rankings for the first time in recent memory. Not bad for a dude (Herm Edwards) two games into his rookie season as a college head coach.
While we're at it, it's worth mentioning these teams not pictured here:
- Chip Kelly hast lost consecutive college games in one season for the first time in his career. UCLA has 38 points in two games. Kelly's Ducks at Oregon did that 40 times in 53 games.
- Kevin Sumlin's past and present. His old team (Houston) whipped his new team, Arizona, 45-18. He's now 0-2 this year. That's a first for Sumlin as a head coach. Arizona hasn't gone winless in the first two games in 37 years.
- Kansas are not within a Hail Mary of this list, but the Jayhawks do deserve mention. The longest road losing streak in FBS (nine years!) ended with a 31-7 KU win at Central Michigan. Call quarterback Peyton Bender "Mr. Reliable."
- Hawaii became first FBS team to start 3-0 this season with a 43-29 win over Rice.
Let's take a look at the latest Power Rankings.
|1||Alabama||The subtext is the subtext for national champions until further notice. In a rout of Arkansas State, Jalen Hurts appeared in his second game. He's only got two more to go until burning a year of eligibility. Meanwhile, Tua for Heisman?||--||10-0|
|2||Clemson||Such a weird quarterback configuration. Senior Kelly Bryant is definitely the starter and the rock. He played the last six series against Texas A&M, helping preserve a 28-26 win. But freshman Trevor Lawrence -- the Fabio of Football -- threw a 64-yard touchdown on his first snap. How do you not keep playing both?||--||10-0|
|3||Auburn||We loved the Tigers after Week 1. Hard to judge in a walk-through against Alabama State. Does it matter? We'll know more really fast with LSU coming to town. Freshmen accounted for 457 of the 568 yards against the Hornets.||--||6-4|
|4||Georgia||Shame on me for picking the upset. Should have known the rout of South Carolina was coming. This quarterback thing is going to be interesting. Jake Fromm is the most accurate Power Five signal caller in the country (79.4 percent). Meanwhile, Justin Fields is actually better (88.8 percent) but hasn't thrown enough passes to qualify.||2||9-1|
|5||Oklahoma||Just to remind everyone: Lincoln Riley is 14-2 as a coach. Is it possible the Sooners are better than last year? OU's quarterback (Kyler Murray) accounted for 375 total yards and five touchdowns against UCLA. Where have we heard that before?||1||9-1|
|6||Ohio State||Dwayne Haskins has more touchdown passes (nine) than 125 teams. Five of those came Saturday against Rutgers. Blame the rain if you must, but The Shoe was filled with less than 100,000 for the first time in 115 games. TCU next.||1||9-1|
|7||Wisconsin||Taylor has that Heisman Trophy gleam in his eye again. Wisconsin's tailback went for a career-high 253 yards against Nevada. The 417 rushing yards were the most of the Paul Chryst era.||--||6-4|
|8||Notre Dame||Brandon Wimbush has no rushing touchdowns through two games after rushing for a quarterback school-record 10 in the first 10 games of last season. Irish squeaked by Ball State. Yikes!||--||10-0|
|9||West Virginia||It was only Youngstown State -- coming off a loss to non-scholarship FCS Butler --- but a win is a win. Will Grier tossed four more touchdown passes, giving him nine. Receiver Gary Jennings tripled his touchdown receptions from all of 2017 (one in 97 catches) with three.||--||8-1|
|10||Stanford||Welcome back to notoriety, Bryce Love. In a near-skunking of USC, Love rushed for 136 yards. More importantly, Stanford may have announced itself as a serious challenger to Washington the Pac-12 North.||--||6-4|
|11||LSU||After a win over Southeastern Louisiana, Ed Orgeron is 8-1 in the regular season since the Troy loss. Stuff is about to get real, though, with Auburn coming up this week.||--||8-2|
|12||Virginia Tech||It seemed the Hokies beat both William AND Mary in a 62-17 rout of The Tribe. Backup Ryan Willis got some quality time in place of Josh Jackson. The former Kansas QB saw his most action in two years (4-of-7 passing, 37 yards) since transferring.||--||4-5|
|13||UCF||The Knights beat South Carolina State 38-0, posting their first shutout since beating South Carolina State 38-0 two years ago. The nation's longest winning streak grows to 15 games.||1||9-0|
|14||TCU||Sometimes it seems like KaVontae Turpin is 27 years old. The 5-foot-9 senior returned a punt for 78 yards and caught a 42-yard pass, both for scores against SMU.||1||4-6|
|15||Washington||Rolled over North Dakota 45-3. The concern is with Myles Gaskin who, if you take away a 24-yard run Saturday, is averaging only 3.2 yards per carry.||1||7-3|
|16||Boise State||I can remember a time when a cogent argument could be made for UConn joining the Power Five. No disrespect, but the Broncos continued to make the Huskies irrelevant in football piling up 818 yards in a 55-point win. Best Group of Five team?||2||8-2|
|17||Penn State||Sort of a surprising stomping of Pittsburgh given the Appalachian State game. The Nittany Lions scored the last 44 points. Trace McSorley kept the nation's longest active streak alive throwing a touchdown in his 30th consecutive game.||2||7-3|
|18||Oregon||Five of Justin Herbert's 39 career touchdown passes are against FCS teams. Nonetheless, we believe. Ducks and Herbert bludgeon Portland State 62-14.||5||6-4|
|19||Mississippi State||A complete evisceration of Kansas State. Nick Fitzgerald debuted throwing for 154 yards and rushing for 159 more. The Dawgs defense held K-State to only 213 yards.||1||6-4|
|20||Arizona State||Herm Edwards wasn't born yesterday, but he hadn't coached in college in 29 years. Does it matter after the Sun Devils' biggest win in years? Herm was a master in clock management as his team maneuvered into position for the game-winning field goal. Only 11 Power Five teams have allowed fewer points (only 20 in two games).||6||6-4|
|21||Michigan State||Maybe the Spartans aren't as good as we thought. They blew a 10-point, fourth-quarter lead to Arizona State, losing 16-13. "One loss doesn't mean the end of everything," safety Khari Willis said. Yeah, but it's starting to feel that way.||8||6-4|
|22||Miami (FL)||Everybody but the equipment staff played in a 77-0 win over Savannah State. Nine different players scored touchdowns in the biggest win (by victory margin) in school history.||1||5-5|
|23||Michigan||All is well once again after the Notre Dame debacle. Michigan steamrolls Western Michigan all the way back to Kalamazoo. Not bad for Shea Patterson after two games - 32-of-47 passing for 352 yards and three touchdowns.||1||9-1|
|24||Colorado||Mike MacIntyre's tears were enough for me. The Buffs' coach guided CU to an historic win over Nebraska while watching his son Jay catch eight balls including two touchdowns. Spoiling Scott Frost's Nebraska debut moved Colorado to 2-0 for the third straight year.||2||5-5|
|25||Texas A&M||A corner was turned Saturday night in College Station. The Aggies are going to be more competitive than we thought based on a two-point loss to Clemson. Go ahead and say it because Jimbo Fisher all but did: It was a moral victory.||3||6-4|
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