College Football Power Rankings for Week 5 (Oct. 4th, 2013)

alabama-number-oneLast week’s college football action featured a very high-profile matchup between #6 LSU and #9 Georgia. And this game was as good as advertised, with Georgia escaping with a 44-41 win at home. QB Aaron Murray threw a 25-yard touchdown to Justin Scott-Wesley with 1:47 remaining to pull out the victory.

After playing four very tough opponents to open the year, Georgia is now in the national championship race, despite having one loss. They’ll be hoping that some of the following teams lose so they can move up in the AP rankings and into a BCS National Championship game spot.

1. Alabama Crimson Tide (4-0); beat Ole Miss 25-0, retains same ranking – Alabama made a ranked Ole Miss team look quite pedestrian in this shutout. And this is a big accomplishment, given that the Rebels have one of the nation’s best offenses. They gained just 205 yards of total offense in this game though.

2. Oregon Ducks (4-0); beat Cal 55-16, retains same ranking – Even in heavy rain, the Ducks couldn’t be slowed down. Oregon QB Marcus Mariota threw a couple of TD passes in this monsoon. The same can’t be said of Cal freshman Jared Goff, who came into this contest with a nation-leading 453 passing yards per game. He couldn’t grip the ball and finished 3-of-6 for 11 yards before being replaced.

3. Ohio State Buckeyes (5-0); beat Wisconsin 31-24, retains same ranking – Ohio State has now won 17 straight games after dispatching the braxton-miller-ohio-state#23 Badgers. Braxton Miller threw for 281 yards and four touchdowns after sitting out for a couple of games with an injury. He and the Bucks face an even bigger test on the road at #16 Northwestern.

4. Clemson Tigers (4-0); beat Wake Forrest 56-7, retains same ranking – Tajh Boyd became just the second ACC quarterback besides Philip Rivers to throw for 100 career touchdown passes in this route. Clemson now goes on the road to face a mediocre Syracuse team.

5. Stanford Cardinals (4-0); beat Washington State 55-17, retains same ranking – Stanford pounded Washington State by tallying 238 rushing yards with five different backs. QB Kevin Hogan added another 286 passing yards and three TD’s for the unbeaten Cardinals.

6. Georgia Bulldogs (3-1); beat LSU 44-41, moves up 3 spots – The Bulldogs make the biggest jump in our rankings, thanks to their win over the Tigers. Assuming Georgia can run the table from here on out, they’ll likely be in the national title game.

7. Texas A&M Aggies (3-1); beat Arkansas 45-33, moves up 1 spotmike-evans-texasNot surprisingly, Johnny Manziel had another big game after gaining 320 yards of total offense and throwing two touchdown passes. WR Mike Evans also continues to impress after catching 6 balls for 118 yards and two touchdowns in this contest.

8. Louisville Cardinals (4-0); bye week, drops 1 spot – The Cardinals had a week to rest before their American Athletic Conference opener at Temple. It may be a while before Louisville runs into any real tough opponents.

9. Florida State Seminoles (4-0); beat Boston College 48-24, moves up 1 spot – FSU got off to a rocky start after going down 17-3 to the Eagles. But super freshman Jameis Winston brought the Seminoles out of their funk by connecting with Kenny Shaw on a hail mail TD before halftime. FSU has now topped 40 points in every game this year.

10. LSU Tigers (4-1); lost to Georgia 44-41, drops 4 spots – You can’t fault the Tigers too much for losing to a strong Georgia team on the road. But LSU could’ve moved into the top 5 if they’d mustered a winning drive with 1:47 left.

College Football Power Rankings for Week 5 (Sept. 26th, 2013)

stanford-football-asuLast Saturday was relatively mild in terms of excitement for the college football world. There were no truly high-profile matchups involving top 10-ranked teams. But that’s not to say that some of college football’s best didn’t face stiff competition. This is especially the case with Stanford, as they took on unbeaten and ranked Pac-10 foe Arizona State. The Cardinals made it look easy though as they dominated the first half and grabbed a 29-0 lead. That said, you can definitely expect to see Stanford moving up this week’s power rankings.

1. Alabama Crimson Tide (3-0); beat Colorado State 31-6, retains same ranking – After surviving a 49-42 shootout against Texas A&M, the Tide faced a much softer opponent in Colorado State. There was never any doubt in this contest with Alabama going up 17-0 in the first half. But QB AJ McCarron still wasn’t happy with how the offense executed in this game. They’d better be sharper against #21 Ole Miss this weekend.

2. Oregon Ducks (3-0); bye week, retains same ranking – Oregon got a week to rest up before their first Pac-10 game of the season. They face California in what should be a pretty easy win, especially with the game being at home.

3. Ohio State Buckeyes (4-0); beat Florida A&M 76-0, retains same ranking – Backup QB Kenny Guiton continues to take advantage of his opportunity to shine in Braxton Miller’s absence. The senior threw a school-record six touchdown passes in this route of the hapless Rattlers. Now the Bucks face a real opponent in #24 Wisconsin this week.

4. Stanford Cardinals (3-0); beat Arizona State 42-28, moves up two spots – Stanford made Arizona State look like some no-name Division III school in the first half. The second half wasn’t quite so impressive, but then again, the game was already over by this point. All in all, it was a much better outing than their 34-20 win against Army last week.

5. Clemson Tigers (3-0); beat NC State 26-14, drops one spottajh-boyd-clemsonClemson came into this contest averaging 45 points a game, but wasn’t able to do any serious damage until scoring a late first-half TD. From here on out, it was all about protecting their small lead in a game filled with poor execution. Tajh Boyd did put up pretty good numbers, though, after throwing for 244 yards and three touchdowns.

6. LSU Tigers (4-0); beat Auburn 35-21, drops one spot – Much like Clemson, LSU only falls because of Stanford’s dominant half against Arizona State. Jeremy Hill ran right over previously unbeaten Auburn en route to amassing 184 rushing yards and three touchdowns. The 6’2″, 235-pound back looked nearly unstoppable last Saturday.

7. Louisville Cardinals (4-0); beat Florida International 72-0, retains same ranking – This was a stat-padder for Teddy Bridgewater as he threw for four touchdowns on the evening. More impressive though was the fact that Louisville held FIU to just 30 yards of total offense, which is a school record.

8. Texas A&M Aggies (3-1); beat SMU 42-13, retains same ranking – In yet another blowout, A&M led 32-6 at the half. This game turned into more of an opportunity for defensive coordinator Mark Snyder to try out different guys and find a winning combination – something that’s been a priority since giving up 49 points to Alabama.

9. Georgia Bulldogs (2-1); beat North Texas 45-21, retains same ranking – This game was actually close early on, with North Texas forcing a second-quarter tie. But QB Aaron Murray was able to pull the Bulldogs out of a funk thanks to 408 yards passing and four total touchdowns.

10. Florida State (3-0); beat Bethune-Cookman 54-6, retains same ranking – Jameis Winston had his worst game as a college player after completing 10-of-19 passes for 148 yards and two touchdowns. But a large part of this was due to several drops by his teammates. In any case, it didn’t matter too much against a dominated Bethune-Cookman team.

College Football Power Rankings for Week 4 (Sept. 20th, 2013)

alabama-texas-amNow three weeks into the 2013 college football season, we’ve already see some big matchups. The most notable involved the defending champion Alabama Crimson Tide taking on Mr. Heisman Johnny Manziel and the Texas A&M Aggies last weekend. Despite strong performances by Manziel, WR Mike Evans and RB Ben Malena, the Tide proved too much to handle. That said, it’s little surprise who our top team is in this week’s power rankings.

1. Alabama Crimson Tide (2-0); beat Texas A&M 49-42 – Alabama may have given up 628 yards of total offense to the Aggies, but then again, they were facing an elite team. The Tide did what they needed to do to win, and put lots of points on the board themselves.

2. Oregon Ducks (3-0); beat Tennessee 59-14 – Oregon hung the first loss on a previously unbeaten Tennessee team, and looked incredible while doing so. Marcus Mariota showed why he’s one of the top prospects heading into the 2014 NFL Draft after putting up 456 passing yards and 4 TD’s against the hapless Vols.

kenny-guiton-osu3. Ohio State Buckeyes (3-0); beat Cal 52-34 – Most teams would struggle mightily in the absence of their Heisman Trophy candidate. But the Buckeyes just inserted backup QB Kenny Guiton for Braxton Miller (sprained MCL) and scored 52 points on the Golden Bears. OSU still hasn’t been beaten since 2011.

4. Clemson Tigers (3-0); beat NC State 26-14 (Sept 19th) – You could make a case for the Tigers being as high as number two on this list. After all, they beat Georgia to open the year and polished off a tough NC State team on the road. Assuming the wins keep coming, Clemson will keep climbing.

5. LSU Tigers (3-0); beat Kent State 45-13 – The Tigers quickly put the Golden Flashes away after scoring 21 points in the first quarter. Following two easy home victories, they face their biggest test since TCU, as unbeaten Auburn comes to Baton Rouge.

6. Stanford Cardinals (2-0); beat Army 34-20 – Few people expected Army to go into the half only trailing by 7 last Saturday. But the Cardinals were able to pull away thanks to a pair of second-half Tyler Gaffney touchdowns. Stanford will try to look more impressive this week against fellow unbeaten Arizona State tomorrow.

teddy-bridgewater-draft7. Louisville Cardinals (3-0); beat Kentucky 27-13 – Nobody expects the Louisville-Kentucky rivalry game to be a cakewalk. And this was definitely the case in the first half as the Cardinals led just 10-3 at the half. Interestingly enough, Louisville relied on RB Senorise Perry (100YDS, 2TD) to carry them in the second half, rather than famed QB Teddy Bridgewater.

8. Texas A&M Aggies (2-1); lost to Alabama 49-42 – A&M is hurting after a close loss at home to the Crimson Tide. But with a ton of offensive talent and plenty more quality opponents on the schedule, the Aggies’ title hopes haven’t been dashed just yet.

9. Georgia Bulldogs (1-1); beat South Carolina 41-30 – Nobody’s going to argue with Georgia’s early strength of schedule after facing Clemson and South Carolina to open the year. The Bulldogs piled up 536 yards of offense to top the Gamecocks and avoid starting 0-2.

10. Florida State Seminoles (2-0) – Star freshman QB Jameis Winston is definitely living up to the hype after throwing six touchdowns in his first two games. And as many people have pointed out, this is more than the five incompletions he’s thrown. Assuming Winston remains poised, FSU should be undefeated when they travel to Clemson in Week 8.