Last weekend’s college football action was highlighted by the Clemson Tigers taking on Florida State. Clemson was slightly favored because they were playing at home and their star QB, Tajh Boyd, was a senior. Nevertheless, FSU turned in a dominating performance en route to a 51-14 win.
The Seminoles defense stifled Boyd by holding him to 158 yards and one touchdown pass, while picking him off twice. Meanwhile, their super-freshman QB, Jameis Winston, put himself near the top of the Heisman Trophy race by throwing for 444 yards and three TD’s. And this big victory moves the Seminoles further up our power rankings too.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide (7-0); beat Arkansas 52-0, retains same ranking – Outside of a 49-42 victory over Texas A&M, Alabama has completely dismantled opponents this season. Their next opponent, Tennessee, figures to be a little tougher competition than Arkansas. But expect this home contest to be yet another easy victory for the Tide.
2. Oregon Ducks (7-0); beat Washington State 62-38, retains same ranking – Leading Heisman Trophy candidate Marcus Mariota had his “worst” game of the season after fumbling twice. However, it wasn’t nearly enough to give the Cougars a real chance at winning. And Mariota still threw for 327 yards, combined for three TD’s and avoided any interceptions yet again this season.
3. Florida State Seminoles (6-0); beat Clemson 51-14, moves up two spots – While people thought that FSU had a shot at beating Clemson, nobody could’ve predicted the massacre that they pulled off. If the Seminoles can run the table in the ACC, they could be competing in the National Title game in January.
4. Ohio State Buckeyes (7-0); beat Iowa 34-24, drops one spot – Last game was a little close for comfort for the Bucks. However, they were able to overcome a 7-point halftime deficit thanks to 251 combined rushing yards from Braxton Miller and Carlos Hyde. OSU now has 19 straight victories, which is the longest streak in D1 college football.
5. Miami Hurricanes (6-0); beat North Carolina 27-23, moves up five spots – Miami just joined our power rankings last week, and now they’ve accelerated to the fifth spot, following losses by Clemson, LSU, Texas A&M, Louisville and UCLA – four of which have dropped out. They’re going to have to play better, though, than beating a 1-5 team by four points. Taking care of the football will be the challenge for the Hurricanes moving forward.
6. Missouri Tigers (7-0); beat Florida 36-17, unranked last week – Maty Mauk engineered a win over 22nd-ranked Florida by throwing for 295 yards in his first career start. The freshman filled in for an injured James Franklin, who watched the game from the sidelines. Missouri is now in good position to win the SEC East and play in the conference championship game.
7. Stanford Cardinals (6-1); beat UCLA 24-10, unranked last week – Stanford only spent one week out of our top 10. They got back in after shutting down the Bruins and breaking the game open with two TD’s in the third quarter. The Cardinals could take an even bigger jump up the rankings if they can beat Oregon on the road. But this is a huge ‘If.’
8. Baylor Bears (6-0); beat Iowa State 71-7, unranked last week – This game got ugly really quick after Baylor jumped out to a 37-0 halftime lead. The Bears nearly pitched a shutout, but the Cyclones got a late touchdown. Baylor has another fairly easy game this Saturday as they travel to Kansas.
9. Clemson Tigers (6-1); lost to Florida State 51-14, drops five spots – The Seminoles really seem to have Boyd’s number since he’s experienced two very bad losses in a row to them. They will try to get back on track as they travel to Maryland.
10. Texas Tech (7-0); beat West Virginia 37-27, unranked last week – Texas Tech actually trailed in this game heading into the fourth quarter. However, they came back and won thanks to two TD’s in the final period. Freshman Davis Webb was on fire as he threw for 462 yards and two scores. But he and the Red Raiders will definitely have to earn their ranking in a road game against Oklahoma on Saturday.