Everyone knew following Monday’s game that LSU would be No. 1 and Clemson No. 2 when the final Associated Press Top 25 football rankings were released on Tuesday.
The drama surrounded the rest of the Top 10.
The biggest surprise to me was Oregon coming in at No. 5, just behind Ohio State and Georgia.
Sure, the Ducks had a fine 12-2 record and beat a solid Wisconsin club 28-27 in its bowl game, but losses came to Auburn and to an Arizona State team that isn’t ranked. Oregon was No. 7 after the regular season.
Florida, Oklahoma, Alabama, Penn State and Minnesota rounded out the Top 10 in the AP poll.
Auburn fell to No. 14 due to its bowl loss to Minnesota and is sandwiched between Baylor and Iowa.
Below are the final selections I submitted to AP as a college football voter this season.
My Top 5: LSU, Clemson, Ohio State, Georgia and Florida. The Gators’ only losses came to LSU and Georgia, which in my mind puts them ahead of Oregon.
Rounding out Top 10: Oregon, Alabama, Oklahoma, Penn State and Minnesota. The Golden Gophers certainly helped themselves with the win against Auburn to conclude one of the best seasons ever for that program.
Just behind: Notre Dame, Baylor, Wisconsin, Iowa and Auburn. The Tigers would have easily finished in the Top 10 without the disappointing loss to Minnesota.
My next 5: Appalachian State, Michigan, Memphis, Navy and Cincinnati. App State was No. 19 in the AP poll — the first time a Sun Belt team has finished the season ranked in the Top 20.
In and out: I dropped Boise State, SMU and Southern Cal and brought in Texas A&M, Florida Atlantic and Louisiana-Lafayette as my final three.
My Top 25: LSU, Clemson, Ohio State, Georgia, Florida, Oregon, Alabama, Oklahoma, Penn State, Minnesota, Notre Dame, Baylor, Wisconsin, Iowa, Auburn, Appalachian State, Michigan, Memphis, Navy, Cincinnati, Utah, Air Force, Texas A&M, Florida Atlantic and Louisiana-Lafayette.
AP Top 25: LSU, Clemson, Ohio State, Georgia, Oregon, Florida, Oklahoma, Alabama, Penn State, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Baylor, Auburn, Iowa, Utah, Memphis, Michigan, Appalachian State, Navy, Cincinnati, Air Force, Boise State, UCF and Texas.