Two Southeastern Conference schools are leading the pack in the AP Top 25 football rankings released Sunday afternoon. LSU, following its win over Florida on Saturday night, moved into the No. 2 slot behind Alabama after being at No. 5 a week ago.
It marks the 29th time the SEC has had the top two ranked teams in the country – the 27th time since 2000 – with a big showdown between the Crimson Tide and Bengal Tigers set for Nov. 9 in Tuscaloosa. Alabama has home games with Tennessee and Arkansas before LSU comes to town, while LSU visits Mississippi State before hosting Auburn.
Georgia barely stayed in the Top 10 after its overtime home loss to South Carolina. The Bulldogs slid from No. 3 to No. 10 in the poll, just behind Florida and just ahead of Auburn. Ironically, Notre Dame, a team Georgia beat several weeks back, is now at No. 8.
My Top 5: Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, LSU and Oklahoma. A week ago, I went with Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Ohio State and Oklahoma with LSU sitting at No. 6. I dropped Georgia to No. 10 and moved LSU up two slots into the No. 4 spot ahead of Oklahoma. Both LSU and Oklahoma have seven-point wins over Texas, but LSU’s win over Florida on Saturday convinced me the Bengal Tigers deserved to jump Oklahoma.
Rounding out Top 10: Wisconsin, Penn State, Florida, Auburn and Georgia. The AP rankings have Georgia above Auburn, but I believe Auburn’s overall body of work is more impressive after watching the Bulldogs drop a home game to a sub-par team.
The next 5: Notre Dame, Oregon, Michigan, Boise State and Utah. The AP rankings have Notre Dame at No. 8, but I have a hard time putting the Irish ahead of a Georgia team that beat them. My pick of Michigan at No. 13 – the Wolverines are 16th in the AP poll – is based on believing the lone blemish against Wisconsin wasn’t really an upset after all.
Just behind: Arizona State, Texas, Baylor, Minnesota and Iowa. The newcomer here is an undefeated Minnesota team, which entered the AP rankings at No. 20.
The final 5: SMU, Appalachian State, Missouri, Cincinnati and Tulane. App State of the Sun Belt has been in my rankings for several weeks and makes its first appearance in the AP poll at No. 24. Tulane enters my poll as the final selection. The only loss for the Green Wave was at Auburn.
Jon’s Top 25: Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, LSU, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Penn State, Florida, Auburn, Georgia, Notre Dame, Oregon, Michigan, Boise State, Utah, Arizona State, Texas, Baylor, Minnesota, Iowa, SMU, Appalachian State, Missouri, Cincinnati and Tulane.
AP Top 25: Alabama, LSU, Clemson, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Penn State, Notre Dame, Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Oregon, Utah, Boise State, Texas, Michigan, Arizona State, Baylor, SMU, Minnesota, Cincinnati, Missouri, Iowa, Appalachian State and Washington.