While a pair of top-10 teams losing in Week 8 -- one of them in historic fashion -- sparked some of the notable changes in this week's college football rankings, there's an interesting storyline developing in the voting points for the CBS Sports 130, our comprehensive ranking of all 130 FBS teams.
Our CBS Sports and 247Sports experts still have Cincinnati as the No. 2 team in the country behind Georgia, but there is growing momentum behind Alabama, which already started ahead of Oklahoma and Ohio State heading into the weekend and now has closed the gap with Cincinnati for that No. 2 spot. Both Alabama and Cincinnati were caught in close and competitive games early on Saturday, but the difference was the Crimson Tide pulled away from Tennessee for a 52-24 win while the Bearcats held on late for a 27-20 victory against Navy.
Another minor adjustment that could be attributed to style points is Oklahoma giving up the No. 4 spot to Ohio State after the Sooners escaped an upset scare at Kansas and the Buckeyes lit up the scoreboard at Indiana. Oklahoma, which is still undefeated at 8-0, didn't fall past No. 5, checking in ahead of Michigan and Michigan State, which are similarly undefeated but both off in Week 8 ahead of their rivalry game this coming Saturday.
Further down in the rankings, Ole Miss and Wake Forest made notable moves up into the top 10 after wins with Pittsburgh (No. 15) and Iowa State (No. 20) also seeing upward momentum after Week 8 results. Oklahoma State's drop after taking its first loss of the season to the Cyclones resulted in a fall only six spots to No. 14, while Penn State's nine-overtime loss to Illinois at home as a 23-point favorite resulted in a drop of more than a dozen spots. For more on the Nittany Lions and other double-digit moves in the CBS Sports 130, check out the Mover's Report below the top 25 table.
College football experts from CBS Sports and 247Sports contribute ballots each week, which are averaged together for our rankings. You can see the top 25 below and 26-130 on our rankings page.
|19||San Diego State||7-0||21|
- No. 38 Wisconsin (+19): At the risk of overreacting to results against Illinois, Army and Purdue, it sure seems like Wisconsin is playing some of its best football of the season right now. It's good timing, too, with Iowa coming up on Saturday in a huge game for the Big Ten West race.
- No. 55 Miami (+18): While the preseason expectations of a top-15 team are long gone, the youth movement at Miami has powered an effort that hasn't quit on the season. After falling short at North Carolina in heartbreaking fashion, the Hurricanes finished on the winning side of another ACC thriller, this time against a quality NC State team. No 3-4 team is going to really have a great argument to move inside the top 40 but an adjustment from outside the top 70 is warranted.
- No. 31 Oregon State (+12): One of the best wins in the Pac-12 this weekend was Oregon State handing Utah its first conference loss of the season and in doing so preserving the Beavers spot in a tie for first place in the Pac-12 North. Coach Jonathan Smith is one win away from having his alma mater bowling for the first time in four years and a couple wins from putting real pressure on rival Oregon in the division.
- No. 41 Minnesota (+11): After beating Maryland, the Golden Gophers now have three wins in a row against conference opponents since that stunning loss to Bowling Green. Minnesota has some tough games left on the schedule, but it's a contender to win the division as it sits tied for first place in the Big Ten West with Iowa.
- No. 52 LSU (-10): The win against Florida sparked a 17-spot move up and the ensuing loss at Ole Miss has the Tigers pulled right back, closer to the FBS average after the 31-17 loss dropped LSU to 4-4 on the season.
- No. 24 Coastal Carolina (-12): Losing at Appalachian State on a last-second field goal is not a bad loss, and it's not surprising to see the Chanticleers remain inside the top 25 as Wednesday's result marks the only defeat of the season so far. The issue, from a rankings perspective, will be the difficulty to climb back inside the top 15 with a remaining schedule that features few opportunities for wins that will grab the voters' attention.
- No. 40 Clemson (-13): Any voters who were waiting to see if Clemson would have its "get right" game have given up. The Tigers have a good defense, an offense that has not clicked and an injury report that can nearly fill out its own depth chart. The Tigers are 4-3 after the loss at Pitt and at every step there have been some voters to believe in this team's talent, but now the double-digit drop has come for coach Dabo Swinney's squad.
- No. 20 Penn State (-14): Everything about the Illinois loss is going to make Penn State fans unhappy. The opponent, the setting and especially the way it played out over nine overtimes with so many failed opportunities to win the game. Our voters seem to have a less emotional view with the rankings reaction, because the Nittany Lions' profile is still worth ranking in the top 20 even in the wake of that immensely disappointing result against the Fighting Illini.
Check out the rest of the CBS Sports 130: Teams ranked 26-130