College Football Power Rankings: The state of Florida looks to be making its way back
This week's Power Rankings feature UCF at No. 11 four total teams from the Sunshine State
Following an exciting night of college football that saw two sets of top-10 teams square off simultaneously, the only question that remains is whether there will be a shakeup in this week's Power Rankings. Before we get to that, let's take a look at some of what we have learned one month into the season.
It appears as if this is one of the best Alabama teams in history. Under our noses, Nick Saban has reshaped the CrimsonTide into an elite passing team. (Four of the top 14 receivers in the SEC are from Alabama.) If quarterback Tua Tagovailoa isn't the leading Heisman Trophy contender, he's damn close.
Clemson won a game with last year's scout team quarterback and a kid who began the week as a third-stringer (Chase Brice). Is Kelly Bryant having second thoughts about preserving his eligibility and leaving four games into the season?
I'd love UCF to play any of the top four right now. The Knights are out of strength-of-schedule bullets with no more Power Five opponents on the schedule, but they could play with anybody. And speaking of the state of Florida, it looks to be on its way back to being the state of Florida. Sort of. Florida, Miami, South Florida and UCF are a combined 16-2. Florida State is one of the most disappointing teams of 2018.
And now a couple quick hitters before we get to this week's Power Rankings.
- Oklahoma could win back-to-back Heismans. Is it possible Kyler Murray is better than Baker Mayfield?
- Parity is on life support if you (like me) continue to believe the College Football Playoff contenders don't extend much past Bama, Ohio State, Clemson and Georgia.
- In some form or another, Notre Dame (this season), Michigan (this month) and Texas (the last two weeks) are "back.".
- Five weeks in, there are 14 undefeated teams. Three of them are from the American Athletic Conference. One of them is Cincinnati. I can't tell you five things about the Bearcats.
- The condition of Nebraska football (0-4) has descended into the comedic. For some reason, Bill Murray was at the Purdue game Saturday. I never thought I'd write these words: Nebraska has the second-longest losing streak in the country and longest in the Power Five (eight games).
- Ohio State's players are a far, far better story than their coach.
- At 1-4, Old Dominion is one of the best stories of the season.
- Is John Calipari jealous of Mark Stoops?
- Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich has resurrected the Warriors and the run-and-shoot.
- The polls are closed: Keegan Brewer and North Texas have clinched the
|1||Alabama||Just another Saturday kicking college football's ass. After a 42-point thrashing of Louisiana, the Tide are winning by 41.5 points per game. Their 271 points through five games are more than 67 Bama teams scored in entire seasons. Nick Saban's only issue is keeping Bryant-Denny Stadium filled for four quarters.||--||14-1|
|2||Ohio State||The Buckeyes stayed in the playoff chase with one of the most meaningful wins of the season. Give 'em credit for rallying from 12 down with eight minutes to play against Penn State and the magic that is Trace McSorley. Bucks are the best team in the Big Ten and second-best team in the country.||1||13-1|
|3||LSU||Aside from Alabama, the Tigers may have had the most impressive first month of the season -- wins over two top 10 teams, the continued evolution of Joe Burrow, the increased credibility of Ed Orgeron, the shut down ability of the defense. Nov. 3 vs. Alabama can't come soon enough.||1||10-3|
|4||Georgia||Not sure if Kirby Smart has developed a feature back. Not sure if Kirby Smart wants to develop a feature back. Elijah Holyfield and D'Andre Swift are part of tailback-by-committee that has Georgia No. 2 in SEC rushing.||1||11-3|
|5||Clemson||The Tigers are a diminished team without Kelly Bryant. We know that now after the injury to Trevor Lawrence. Chase Brice saved Clemson's bacon against Syracuse, but if he has to play for an extended time, the Tigers are in danger.||1||15-0|
|6||Notre Dame||Brian Kelly played ping-pong with media Saturday regarding his starting quarterback. C'mon, BK. If it isn't Ian Book, there are issues. Right now, there are few with the Irish who are 5-0 for the third time since 2012.||2||12-1|
|7||Oklahoma||The defense continues to be the biggest question after a 66-33 win over Baylor. In the last two games, the opposition has held the ball for 82 minutes (68 percent of the time). Opposing teams have run twice as many plays (188-94) in that span. When does a suspect defense begin to run out of gas?||2||12-2|
|8||Auburn||For the first time in six years, the Tigers posted back-to-back rushing games under 100 yards. Auburn rushed for only 96 yards in a sluggish win over Southern Miss. You want ugly? There were eight punts, a fumble and a missed field goal by the Tigers.||2||8-5|
|9||West Virginia||Just when you thought Texas Tech was going to a factor in the Big 12, Will Grier smacked down the Red Raiders. Murray and Grier (17 passing touchdowns each) should be neck-and-neck for the Heisman after the first month of the season.||1||8-4|
|10||Washington||Jake Browning became UW's all-time passing leader in a rout of BYU. It was the most complete performance of the season for the Huskies who still have Pac-12 and playoff possibilities intact.||1||10-4|
|11||UCF||Have mercy. No really, call off the dogs, Josh Heupel. The Knights are the Group of Five version of Alabama having beaten the opposition by a combined 128 points. That's more points than 49 teams have scored. McKenzie Milton has positioned himself for another Heisman run after accounting for six touchdowns against Pittsburgh.||1||12-1|
|12||Kentucky||Yes, the Wildcats can contend in the SEC East. Benny Snell Jr. gained 99 yards, and Kentucky scored on four straight possessions to take a 24-3 lead at halftime. Texas A&M next.||3||10-3|
|13||Miami (FL)||The Canes ran North Carolina out of the building 47-10 on Thursday night. In other news, the Turnover Chain applied for overtime pay. Six turnovers gained against the Tar Heels makes it 12 on the season, third nationally.||1||7-6|
|14||Stanford||Just when we thought the Cardinal were rounding into shape, K.J. Costello is sacked five games and Bryce Love has to leave with an ankle injury. It's official: Everyone in the Pac-12 North has a loss.||7||9-4|
|15||Penn State||How is McSorley not allowed to make a play on fourth down against Ohio State? McSorley, the top rushing Power Five quarterback. McSorley, the Nits spiritual leader. McSorley, despite one of the best games of his career, was commanded to hand off against a stacked Ohio State defensive line on fourth down. A depressing end (for Penn State) to a wonderful game.||2||9-4|
|16||Texas||The Longhorns won at K-State for the first time in 16 years setting up an interesting Red River Shootout. Texas and Oklahoma for the Big 12 lead. Defense continues to fuel the Horns.||2||10-4|
|17||Colorado||There is one undefeated team left in the Pac-12. The Pac-12 South is entirely up for grabs. Why not the Buffaloes (4-0), who blasted UCLA on Friday? A case can be made for Steve Montez being the best quarterback in the conference.||5||5-7|
|18||Michigan||A worrisome slog at Northwestern. The Wolverines spotted the Wildcats a 17-7 lead then methodically came back to win 20-17. Nice repair work in September by Jim Harbaugh after an opening loss to Notre Dame.||2||10-3|
|19||Wisconsin||Bye. All the Badgers goals are still within reach despite a damaging loss to BYU on Sept. 15. October begins with a visit by Nebraska riding a program-record eight straight losses.||2||8-5|
|20||Oregon||Nice rebound from Stanford. The Ducks post their first Pac-12 road win in almost two years Saturday at Cal. Justin Herbert threw for two more touchdowns. After a bye week, Washington comes to town for North Division showdown.||1||9-4|
|21||Florida||The Gators are rounding into shape after a line-of-scrimmage win at Mississippi State. Florida was won consecutive true SEC road games. You know who else has done that in the Strength Everywhere Conference this season? Nobody.||NR||10-3|
|22||South Florida||Bye. It's not often a team moves into the Power Rankings while sitting on the couch. But the Bulls get the nod because of Power Five wins over Georgia Tech and Illinois at this point.||NR||7-6|
|23||Michigan State||The still-sluggish Spartans move to 3-1 with a sluggish 31-20 win over sluggish Central Michigan. Big Ten home opener this week vs. Northwestern.||NR||7-6|
|24||Boise State||The only thing hazy about Boise's performance was the surroundings. Smoke from a nearby fire clouded conditions in a 20-point win at Wyoming. Broncos jump back into New Year's Six contention after Brett Rypien went for 300-plus for the fourth consecutive game.||NR||10-3|
|25||Hawaii||It's time to credit Cole McDonald and John Ursua. McDonald, Hawaii's quarterback, leads the nation in touchdown passes (24). Ursua leads the nation in catches (50), receiving yards (771) and touchdown catches (12). The Warriors join Alabama, LSU, Kentucky, Georgia, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ohio State, Clemson and Cincinnati for most wins in the country.||NR||8-6|
Out: San Diego State, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Mississippi State, BYU
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