In the spirit of full disclosure, I am still physically ill from what transpired Saturday night. It's very depressing to write this week's post, not because Clemson will not be included, but more so because of the manner in which they avoided inclusion. There wasn't a ton of movement in the poll this week, and that may stay true for another week, as the slate of games this weekend is so depressing that College Gameday is going to Columbia to watch South Carolina take on Missouri, which is wallowing in freakish misery right now after losing at home to Indiana. Here is this week's poll, minus Clemson for the first time since 2011.
1. Florida State (Last Week: 1)
What angers me more than Clemson somehow escaping victory in Tallahassee is the fact that Jameis Winston and his dumb face (cursing is frowned upon by management) gets off scot-free with all of his bull stuff.
2. Oregon (Last Week: 2)
I'm down on the Ducks this week after they barely held off a terrible Washington State team Saturday night. And that may not have even been possible without the missed call to end all missed calls.
3. Alabama (Last Week: 3)
Consequently, I was more impressed with the Tide than I have been so far this season. Florida hung around for a while, but Bama pulled away from the Gators in pretty dominating fashion. Amari Cooper is my Heisman front-runner at this juncture.
4. Oklahoma (Last Week: 4)
Oklahoma still isn't my favorite, but I have to give the Sooners props for beating West Virginia by two scores in a game I thought they could easily lose.
5. Auburn (Last Week: 5)
Not a pretty performance by Auburn last Thursday at Kansas State, but a win is a win. It will be interesting to see if the rest of the SEC learned anything from the defensive performance of Bill Synder's bunch, which really slowed down the Tigers' attack.
6. Texas A&M (Last Week: 6)
The Aggies are still cruising right along, but don't sleep on this week's opponent, Arkansas. The Razorbacks have been steamrolling teams with their rushing attack, and it wouldn't surprise me to see them slow down the tempo of this game and hang around.
7. Baylor (Last Week: 7)
Baylor is first in the nation is points per game and second in points allowed per game. Not that they have played anybody, but wow.
8. Notre Dame (Last Week: 9)
The Irish take on Syracuse this weekend in a sad excuse for a prime-time ABC game. Hopefully Stanford drops the hammer on them next week.
9. Michigan State (Last Week: 11)
The Spartans are still in good position to sneak into the College Football Playoff if they win out, which they should.
10. Ole Miss (Last Week: 10)
The Rebels get Alabama next week, and you know what that means: The players have no idea they actually have another opponent to take care of first. Memphis is coming to town, and while I don't think they'll win, I expect the Tigers to put a scare into the Rebels, who will be caught looking ahead.
11. UCLA (Last Week: 12)
Brett Hundley may or may not play Thursday against Arizona State, but they had better hope he does, even with the Sun Devils' starting quarterback out.
12. Georgia (Last Week: 13)
Georgia took the banner from Ohio State this week as the team that took out its frustrations from a loss on some poor, innocent opponent. Troy was the victim of this week's beat-down.
13. South Carolina (Last Week: 14)
I'll let Steve Spurrier tell you all about the Gamecocks.
14. Mississippi State (Last Week: NR)
An impressive win (that they tried to blow) at LSU at night was all it took for Mississippi State to storm from unranked into the top 15. This is a good team, but I'm about as crazy about them as I am about in-state rival Ole Miss, which is basically...eh.
15. Arizona State (Last Week: 15)
I finally find a team to knock off UCLA for me, and bam...their quarterback gets hurt. I'm still thinking the Sun Devils have a shot on Thursday without Taylor Kelly, especially if Hundley misses the game for the Bruins.
16. Stanford (Last Week: 16)
The Cardinal are on the road at Washington this week, and I would like to use this space to talk about Washington. The Huskies may have played the weirdest football game ever this past weekend. They trailed Georgia State...GEORGIA STATE...14-0 at the half, and then went on to win 45-14. Was every player in a coma during the first half? Football is so weird.
17. LSU (Last Week: 8)
Fans flocked out of Death Valley early when LSU trailed Mississippi State 34-10 in the fourth quarter, and they almost missed a historic comeback. That said, that was not a good loss for the Tigers.
18. USC (Last Week: 17)
The Trojans needed a week off after getting dismantled by Boston College. Let's see if they can regain form against Oregon State.
19. Wisconsin (Last Week: 19)
Melvin Gordon had 253 yards on 13 carries against Bowling Green. Just let that sink in for a moment. This week on Wisconsin's hilarious schedule: a home date with South Florida.
20. BYU (Last Week: 21)
The Cougars held off Virginia, a statement which isn't quite as sad as it would have been a year ago. Taysom Hill didn't exactly light it up but continues to be solid.
21. Nebraska (Last Week: 24)
Nebraska beat Miami. Cool.
22. Ohio State (Last Week: 23)
I'm not sure Ohio State is a top-25 team at this point.
23. East Carolina (Last Week: NR)
Deserved! The Pirates dismantled North Carolina to move into sole possession of first place in the ACC Coastal.
24. Oklahoma State (Last Week: 25)
Expect the Cowboys to have their way with a Texas Tech defense that had to can its coordinator for partying on the job.
25. Kansas State (Last Week: 20)
If any team feels a pain similar to Clemson's, it's the Wildcats. Like the Tigers, they squandered numerous scoring opportunities and fell short in their upset bid against fifth-ranked Auburn. But as Chad Morris can tell you, almost doesn't count.