Week 2 marked the first (nearly) full weekend of college football action in his adjusted 2020 fall season with the ACC and the Big 12 joining the AAC, Conference USA and Sun Belt on the field for the first set of rankings-shaking results of the year. Before the season began, we decided to rank the 76 teams playing football this fall for our full FBS-wide analysis, which in recent years has been the CBS Sports 130.
Now trimmed to the CBS Sports 76, the rankings are ready to be reracked for the first time since the preseason to reflect our takeaways from Week 2 action. Of course, we still have yet to see more than a dozen of those 76 teams with the SEC getting started later this month and other teams still sidelined because of postponements, but that does not mean the rankings are absent of intrigue.
You can check out the biggest movements in the entire 76-team set below, but one playoff contender making a small, but notable jump is the Texas Longhorns. Start rolling through those jokes about Texas and whether or not we have reached "back" status, but the sheer dominance of the season opening win against UTEP seemed to confirm a growing buzz from Austin. Tom Herman knows that 8-5 hasn't been good enough; Sam Ehlinger knows 8-5 hasn't been good enough. After making changes at offensive and defensive coordinator, the Longhorns have a refocused energy on achieving those Big 12 championship goals.
We won't be able to really put this new top 10 status to the test until early October when the 'Horns hit the teeth of their Big 12 schedule, but in a bad week for the league with three losses to the Sun Belt, the success of Texas serves as a sign that the conference has more to offer to the College Football Playoff race than Oklahoma seeking its fourth straight playoff appearance.
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 26-76 on our rankings page.
- No. 28 Army (+27): The only 2-0 team in FBS has beaten its two opponents by a combined score of 79-7. Our experts lowered the expectations for the Black Knights in the preseason polling after a five-win season in 2019, but it looks like Jeff Monken has the program right back to the level that saw double-digit wins in both 2017 and 2018.
- No. 23 Louisiana (+20): The Ragin' Cajuns didn't just beat ranked Iowa State, they shut out the Cyclones in the second half and looked just as physical and athletic as their Big 12 hosts. That win is going to allow Louisiana to hold water in comparisons against power conference teams all season as long as it remains in the Sun Belt title race, something we expect after two straight conference title game appearances under Billy Napier.
- No. 21 BYU (+19): A thumping of Navy is going to set up one of the most interesting cases for college football rankings, as BYU is going to have a limited number of games but could very well wind up with an undefeated record. The toughest opponents on the schedule are Houston, Army and Western Kentucky, and the efficiency shown in a 55-3 win against Navy suggests all of those games are winnable.
- No. 31 Marshall (+17): This rise in the rankings comes with just one data point, a 59-0 rout of Eastern Kentucky. It's a case where the absence of other action allowed for a boost, but Marshall should absolutely be considered one of the top handful of teams in Conference USA and therefore one of the top 30 or 40 teams in this 76-team FBS landscape. Holding onto that ranking will be on the line this weekend with a tough matchup against Appalachian State.
- No. 40 Florida State (-18): No team had a more disappointing weekend than FSU. Another blown fourth-quarter lead, another game where the offense just could not generate the first downs and touchdowns it needed to win. The Seminoles were favored by double digits and had the on-paper talent and experience advantage against Georgia Tech, but Mike Norvell's opener as the new coach looked awfully similar to too many results from the previous seasons of frustrations.
- No. 38 Iowa State (-21): The big question here will be how the Cyclones respond. They were pushed around at the line of scrimmage by Louisiana and could not generate much success through the air with star quarterback Brock Purdy. The program has hit a point under Matt Campbell where we assume a floor of bowl eligibility and a ceiling of one big upset win per year against a Big 12 power. After losing to Louisiana, those levels might need to be reassessed for our 2020 expectations.
Check out the rest of the CBS Sports 76: Teams ranked 26-76