While Georgia and Alabama remain No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, in the CBS Sports 130, our comprehensive ranking of every FBS team in college football is starting to indicate a shift of power within the top five. Cincinnati has generally been at the forefront of top-five shifts in recent weeks, and this edition of the rankings has proven no different. The Bearcats continue to struggle against conference competition, and their latest close call has once again made a difference.
Our voters moved Cincinnati from No. 3 to No. 2 following Iowa's loss to Penn State in October, and the Bearcats spent the next three weeks defending that position as the Crimson Tide slowly closed the gap. The narrow wins over AAC foes for Cincinnati finally had their cumulative effect as it dropped back to No. 3 just last week. Now a near-upset at the hands of Tulsa has led to a second straight week of falling in the rankings after a win. The Bearcats dropped two more spots to No. 5, seeing both Oklahoma and Ohio State each move up to No. 3 and No. 4, respectively, despite the Sooners being idle in Week 10 and the Buckeyes narrowly escaping Nebraska.
While Michigan State checked in at No. 3 in the College Football Playoff Rankings, the Spartans were at No. 5 in the CBS Sports 130, so the result from their loss at Purdue was not that significant. Thanks to the win against Michigan, Mel Tucker's group has a pretty high floor as a one-loss team and checks in this week at No. 7, one spot ahead of the Wolverines.
While there wasn't a ton of major movement near the top of the rankings, Wake Forest did land down six spots at at No. 13 after suffering its first loss of the season at North Carolina. Further down, Wisconsin continued its late season climb up five spots to No. 24 while we saw Fresno State drop nine spots to No. 36 after a 40-14 home loss to Boise State. For more on movement up and down within 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.
- No. 28 Purdue (+15): The Boilermakers aren't only getting respect for a profile that includes wins against both Iowa and Michigan State, but also a conference record that has Purdue right in the middle of the Big Ten title race. Remaining in the four-way tie for the division lead is going to be tough and require a win against Ohio State, but this is a team and a program that is built for the challenge.
- No. 34 Tennessee (+15): There is some eye test adjustment going on with the Vols because we've seen this team improve, even in losses, over the last month. Saturday's thrilling win against Kentucky was confirmation of that improvement and provided a quality head-to-head win for rankings purposes.
- No. 43 North Carolina (+11): Like Tennessee, the Tar Heels are caught between the weight of four losses and yet boosted by a quality win that requires recognition. Beating previously undefeated Wake Forest adds to last month's win against Miami and a high-scoring loss to Notre Dame to justify some upward momentum for a team that has two huge ACC road games left on the schedule at Pitt and NC State.
- No. 31 SMU (-11): A 7-0 start had the Mustangs surging in the rankings. But there is a fast snap back when the losses not only arrive but pile up quickly near the end of the season. Maybe it's regression to the mean or maybe SMU is losing steam late, but it's hard to argue for the Mustangs as a top-30 team after the 28-25 loss to Memphis in Week 10.
- No. 35 Kentucky (-14): The 22-spot drop over the last two weeks is a result not only of the three-game losing streak but a reassessment of the profile that looked so sterling at 6-0. The Wildcats got all the way up to No. 10 in the CBS Sports 130 thanks to momentum from wins against Florida and LSU, but those wins don't carry the same weight given how the season has gone for each team.
- No. 64 Florida (-27): Dan Mullen is shaking up the staff on both sides of the ball following the worst stretch of football since he arrived as the head coach in Gainesville. Florida has lost four of its last five and given up at least 34 points in three straight defeats. Odds still favor the Gators -- now 4-5 on the year -- making the postseason, but finishing at 6-6 or 7-5 is far too average for a program with championship expectations.
Check out the rest of the CBS Sports 130: Teams ranked 26-130