1. Georgia: (37-0 win vs Arkansas)
Georgia has scored 99 points and allowed ZERO in their last two games.
Shutting out Vanderbilt is whatever, but the Bulldogs handled my 9th ranked Razorbacks team handily.
Arkansas came into the game averaging 261 yards on the ground and was able to gain 75 yards in that department on Saturday.
Georgia has the best college football defense I’ve seen since I’ve been alive. I’m 22 years old.
2. Alabama: (42-21 win vs Ole Miss)
Much was said about Lane Kiffin and the high-powered Ole Miss defense potentially upsetting Alabama, but the Crimson Tide doubled up the Rebels on Saturday.
Heisman hopeful Matt Corral had just 213 yards passing and two total touchdowns on the day.
Bryce Young had 241 yards passing, a touchdown, and an interception.
Talented RB Jase McClellan went down with an injury in this one.
However, Brian Robinson Jr totaled 36 carries for 171, and four scored in this one. He will be huge moving forward.
3. Oklahoma: (37-31 win vs Kansas State)
Good news for OU fans? Oklahoma found some rhythm on offense.
Rattler had 267 total yards, two touchdowns, and an interception in this one.
Marvin Mims got it going finally Saturday, as he had 71 yards on four receptions, as did Kennedy Brooks on the ground (15-91-1).
If this offense continues to improve and this defense (who had their worst defensive game of the season) can continue to play good football, Oklahoma can escape October without losing.
4. Iowa: (51-14 win vs Maryland)
I won’t lie. When Iowa came into my 23rd ranked Maryland Terrapins home field, I was nervous the Hawkeyes could potentially lay an egg.
Five Taulia Tagovailoa interceptions & SEVEN turnovers later, this team proved to me they’re the real deal.
Not only did the defense show up per usual, but this offense (that I’ve questioned at times) played solid.
Quarterback Spencer Petras threw for 259 yards three scores, one of them to Tyler Goodson, who had 151 total yards in this one.
5. Cincinnati: (24-13 win vs Notre Dame)
The Bearcats came into Notre Dame Stadium and put the country on notice on Saturday.
Desmond Ridder totaled 323 total yards and three touchdowns to lead his program to a victory in its very first top ten regular-season matchups in program history.
No team outside of the Power Five conference has made the college football playoff, but if Cincinnati wins out, they have an excellent chance to be the first.
6. Penn State: (24-0 win vs Indiania)
Penn State shut out Indiana thanks to eight forced punts, two turnovers, and a blocked field goal.
Quarterback Sean Clifford threw for 178 yards and three touchdowns (one interception) in this one, two of which went to Jahan Dotson (8-84-2).
His other TD pass went into the hands of Sophomore TE Brenton Strange.
Penn States’ matchup at Iowa next week is essentially a play-in game for the college football playoff.
7. Oregon: (24-31 loss vs Stanford)
Oregon was STUNNED by Stanford late in this one.
The Cardinals had the ball under two minutes to go on their 13-yard line. They drove down the field to force overtime with the aid of a questionable at best roughing the passer penalty on the potential number one overall pick, Kayvon Thibodeaux.
A defensive holding call allowed a touchdown pass from Cardinals backup quarterback Tanner McKee (230 passing yards & three touchdowns) to wideout Elijah Higgins (6-62-1)to force overtime with zero time remaining in the game.
In overtime, a McKee touchdown pass to John Humphreys (4-53-1) gave Stanford the go-ahead touchdown and what would be a game-winning play.
8. Ohio State: (52-13 win vs Rutgers)
It seems like a week of rest did CJ Stroud well.
His five touchdowns went to Chris Olave (5-119-2), Garrett Wilson (3-71-1), Jeremy Ruckert (4-40-1) & Mitch Rossi.
On the ground, the team-leading rusher was a talented Freshman, Treveyon Henderson (8-71-1).
After a two-interception performance last week against Akron, the Buckeyes intercepted Rutgers quarterback Noah Vedral three times in this one.
Ohio State appears to be playing much better football on the defensive side of the ball and very well could make a run still for the Big-10 title.
9. Notre Dame: (13-24 loss vs Cincinnati)
Notre Dame has always appeared to be a quarterback away, and it seems they have a QB problem.
Jack Coan and talented Freshman Tyler Buchner both threw interceptions in this one, as it was Drew Pyne who had to come off the pine again in this one (Corny, I know).
However, Pyne completed just 9 of 22 passes for 143 yards and a touchdown.
I believe Notre Dame needs to figure out who the starting quarterback will be for this Fighting Irish team & I think they should look towards the future and name Buchner the starter.
In 2019, he had the most TOTAL YARDS at the QB position in the NATION. (Missed his senior year due to COVID restrictions)
Buchner adds an exciting dynamic with his legs this Notre Dame offense needs.
10. BYU: (34-20 win vs Utah State)
BYU is undefeated with two top 25 wins against Utah & Arizona State.
They kept their train rolling against Utah State on the back of Tyler Allgeier, who had 240 total yards and three touchdowns.
In this one, Baylor Romney got the start again at Quarterback, as he completed 15 of 19 pass attempts for 187 yards and a touchdown.
He exited with a head injury in this one, so Cougar fans will want to keep an eye on his (or Jaren Hall’s) availability for next week’s game.
11. Arkansas: (0-37 loss vs Georgia)
Look, I know they lost. I know they scored ZERO points (even Clemson could muster a mere three points against Georgia), but I can’t bump the Hogs too far down for losing to the best team in the nation.
Next week the Razorbacks will look to rebound against an Ole Miss team that allowed Alabama running back Brian Robinson Jr to rush for 171 yards and four scores against them.
I expect this team to rebound and have their way on the ground.
12. Costal Carolina: (59-6 win vs ULM)
This one was essentially a bye week for Coastal Carolina.
Grayson McCall completed all 13 of his passes for 216 yards and two scores.
Reese White paced the team in rushing with 95 yards, while Braydon Bennett tallied 74 on the ground and two scores.
Isaiah Likely led the team with 95 yards and two touchdowns.
13. Kentucky: (20-13 win vs Florida)
In the air, Kentucky got outgained on the ground, was less efficient on third down, AND had the ball a less time than the Gators but STILL won.
In large part due to this play below:
Will Levis completed 7 of 17 pass attempts for 87 yards, a touchdown, and an interception. He also added 21 yards on the ground on six carries.
Speaking of production on the ground, Chris Rodriguez Jr totaled 99 yards and a score on 19 attempts.
Wan’Dale Robinson had four receptions for 64 yards and was the recipient of Levis’s only passing touchdown.
14. Oklahoma State: (24-14 win vs Baylor)
OSU hasn’t allowed more than 23 points all season & continued their strong defensive performance against my 19th ranked Baylor Bears team that just beat a good Iowa State squad the week before.
This Cowboys offensive line has improved as the year has gone on, and it showed Saturday.
As a result, Jaylen Warren ran the ball 36 times for 125 yards and two scores.
Dual-threat quarterback Spencer Sanders chipped in 76 yards on the ground but struggled to get things going with his arm in this one, throwing for just 182 yards, one touchdown, and three interceptions.
Oklahoma State will need him to play like he did last week against Kansas State (344 yards passing, three total scores) if they’re going to compete in the Big-12 this year & beat Oklahoma and Texas.
15. Michigan State: (48-31 win vs Western Kentucky)
Michigan State barely survived a Nebraska team that’s better what most people thought last week & responded well this week.
Kenneth Walker struggled last week to get anything going but amassed 126 yards on the ground and three scores on 24 carries.
Quarterback Payton Thorne completed 20 of 30 pass attempts for 327 yards and a touchdown.
Jayden Reed hauled in Thorne’s only touchdown pass as he had four receptions and 127 yards on the day.
Jalen Nailor paced the team in receptions (8) & yards (128).
If Michigan State can continue to run the ball effectively, they’ll be a hard team to beat.
16. SMU: (41-17 win vs USF)
I’ve had SMU ranked a whole week before the AP poll after their win against a TCU squad I had ranked 22nd in the nation.
They’re still undefeated, thanks to Tanner Mordecai’s 329 total yards, four touchdowns (leading the country in TD passes) effort.
Two of his TD’s were caught by Senior Danny Gray, who tallied seven receptions for 74 yards. He has a TD in every game so far this season.
Another WR on the Mustangs with a touchdown in every game? Junior, Rashee Rice. He had eight receptions for 71 yards and a score in this one.
Senior wideout Reggie Robinson Jr also caught a TD (5-54), extending his streak to three games.
Running-back Tre Siggers had a breakout performance against TCU last week, as he tallied 110 yards on the ground and kept the momentum going with 86 yards and a score against the Bulls on Saturday.
17. Michigan: (38-17 win vs Wisconsin)
The AP polls NINTH ranking of Michigan is…crazy. This team is 5-0, yes, but they have ZERO top 25 wins according to my “Cream of the Crop” rankings.
If you want to count the Washington win as a top 25 win, go ahead (ranked 20 in AP preseason poll), but that team lost to MONTANA this year.
Besides that game, their wins consist of Western Michigan, Northern Illinois, Rutgers, and a now 1-3 Wisconsin team.
How many more losses can a team have before we stop calling them a “good team”?
Michigan has played well this year but hasn’t played anyone.
18. Wake Forest: (37-34 win vs Louisville)
Wake Forest is undefeated, and the ACC’s only hope is to reach the college football playoff.
They survived Louisville in this one, thanks to a late FG by Nick Sciba.
Quarterback Sam Hartman has proven to be a reliable QB this season. He had 359 total yards, three total touchdowns, and an interception in this one.
His touchdown passes came to Taylor Morin (6-122) & A.T. Perry (3-25), but wideout Jaquari Roberson paced the team with six receptions and 135 yards.
Justice Ellison had 67 yards and a touchdown for Demon Deacons at the RB position.
19. Florida: (13-20 loss vs Kentucky)
It’s hard to believe that Florida was a failed two-point conversion from sending their game against Alabama into overtime with ALL the momentum two weeks ago, after their performance against Kentucky this week.
Emory Jones had played solid this season but was late on his decision on the option play against Alabama when the team went for two and didn’t do enough to give his team the win this weekend.
It might not be fair, but one must wonder if the Gators need to give Anthony Richardson a shot at being the starting quarterback.
He offers just as much as Jones in the ground game & is a much more developed passer.
20. Ole Miss: (21-42 loss vs Alabama)
Ole Miss rushed for 372 yards and a touchdown last week against Tulane, something I thought they could and NEEDED to exploit against Alabama.
78 yards did NOT cut it, especially when Matt Corral had just 213 yards and one touchdown.
That was their first loss of the season & it was against an outstanding Alabama team, so that I couldn’t bump them down too much.
With Corral at the helm, they shouldn’t drop too many more games.
21. Arizona State: (42-23 win vs UCLA)
Arizona State came into the season as my 18th ranked team.
After losing to an Unranked BYU team in my rankings, I dropped them out of my poll, but they have responded well since that loss, including last week’s victory over my 17th ranked UCLA team.
Jayden Daniels is heating up. Last week against Colorado, he combined for 311 total yards and two touchdowns.
This week against UCLA, a Sun Devils team who runs the ball frequently to start the season relied on Daniels to win the game with his arm, and he did just that.
Daniels completed 13 of 19 pass attempts for 286 yards and two scores in the air.
Additionally, he chipped in 45 yards on the ground.
As long as Daniels is playing well, this team will be tough to beat.
22. Texas: (32-27 win vs TCU)
Ever since losing to a good Arkansas team, Texas has looked very good, and part of it is thanks to the play of Casey Thompson.
This weekend, he had a rough game, completing just 12 of 22 pass attempts for 177 total yards, one touchdown, and an interception.
However, the Longhorns have the best player in college football in Bijan Robinson.
Robinson had 238 total yards and two touchdowns.
23. Baylor: (14-24 loss vs Oklahoma State)
The Baylor Bears came into last week undefeated, with the nation’s sixth-ranked rushing attack.
However, their ground game was bottled up for the most part, as the team finished with 107 yards rushing in the night.
They averaged 272 yards per contest in their first three games.
If the Bears want to be contenders in the Big-12, they’ll need consistency in the ground game moving forward.
24. NC State: (34-27 win vs Louisiana Tech)
After a double-overtime upset win against Clemson last weekend, the Wolfpack survived a solid Louisiana Tech football team.
Devin Leary threw for 251 yards and two touchdowns in this one.
Lead wideout Emeka Emezie had four receptions for 67 yards.
Running-back Ricky Pearson Jr had 90 yards and a touchdown.
25. Auburn: (24-19 win vs LSU)
Deciding between the Auburn Tigers & the Maryland Terrapins was a tough one for me.
Maryland, my 23rd ranked team last week, blew an opportunity to beat what was then my 5th ranked Iowa team at HOME and looked terrible while doing so.
But it led me to question, should the Terps fall out of the top 25 because they lost to the 2nd best defensive unit in the country?
However, I decided to go back to my pre-season crush of Bo Nix and the Auburn Tigers.
I thought that Nix would take a step up this season and that he & Tank Bigsby would be enough to beat Alabama… a pre-season BOLD prediction of mine.
Auburn’s close loss against Penn State in the white-out game pushed them out of my top 25, but Nix and company looked impressive Saturday night.
Auburn’s defense has yet to give up more than 28 points this season, and if Nix can continue to play well, this team can continue to be a top 25 team.