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Tomorrow’s top 25 today: Northwestern goes down top 10 of new college football rankings



A week without too many surprises in top 25 action provides an interesting backdrop for AP Top 25 voters as they consider the new college football rankings after week 12. After all, this is the last vote before the release of the first College Football final ranking of 2020.

The CFP selection committee and the AP voters have an interesting give-and-take relationship, with Sunday’s vote serving as an immediate response, while the CFP ranking on Tuesday night involves more debate and discussion. One can inform and / or influence the other based on what we have seen the last six seasons, but in this unique year we have never had less involvement from the committee so far into the season.

Of course, we are also dealing with a season that has yielded several numerous resumes in the top 25. Teams like Wisconsin and Oregon have played as many games as Alabama and Notre Dame have left on their schedules, making it harder to sort the ranking than usual . The Badgers will certainly fall after losing in the Northwestern, but how far will be tied to the boost that the Wildcats will surely receive after the top 1

0 win. There are also closer than expected gains from Oregon and Georgia to consider.

All in all, an interesting table setter adds to Tuesday’s release of rankings. The top four and maybe even the top six should be close to matching the AP Top 25, but everything goes when you look at the middle of the top 25. We can make some assessments for the new rankings on Sunday thanks to a more than two-month voting behavior , but there is no guarantee that they will not be affected by what the committee says this week.

This is how we think the new AP Top 25 poll will look on Sunday. Last week’s ranking in parentheses.

1. Alabama (1): No Iron Bowl lookahead problems were evident as Crimson Tide plucked Kentucky apart in a 60-point home win. Next week’s edition of the rivalry will also be at Bryant-Denny Stadium, where it’s hard to imagine anything but Alabama’s best way they’re playing right now.

Notre Dame (2): The Irish fighters were out in week 12.

Ohio State (3): Any chance of claiming No. 1 after Saturday was lost as a 35-7 second-half lead against Indiana turned into a 42-35 victory that was on the line in the final minutes. There are plenty of compliments to the Hoosiers coming out of the game, but also a critical look at the Buckeyes who are likely to avoid the Irish again in this week’s vote.

Clemson (4): The Tigers’ game in Florida State was postponed hours before kickoff, as the two medical teams could not agree to continue with the game due to a positive test from a Clemson player on Friday. As the player practiced with symptoms, there was concern that he had been contagious even though he had tested negative throughout the week. It was disappointing for both teams, but now we are waiting another week for the return of Trevor Lawrence and full strength Tiger offense.

5. Texas A&M (5): A large number of agggies in quarantine resulted in the second week in a row without action with Saturday’s date against Ole Miss being exposed. The next game on the schedule is LSU at home on November 28th.

Florida (6): Kyle Trask added three touchdowns and 383 yards that passed to his increasingly impressive season totals, but Dan Mullen will not be happy with a 38-17 win at Vanderbilt given some of the unanswered tasks and tackles that made it possible for game to be closer than many expected.

7. Cincinnati (7): Down 14-3 to UCF early on, the Bearcats showed plenty of resilience and Desmond Knight rose to the occasion in a high-scoring fight against one of the most productive offenses in the country. Saturday’s 36-33 victory is the first of three straight road games that close out the regular season, with Temple and Tulsa following ahead of the AAC Championship game on December 19th.

BYU (8): A trouncing of North Alabama leaves the Cougars right where they stood and came out this week.

9. Oregon (11): There is a sense that Oregon should be better or at least more dominant against a UCLA team that lacks its starting quarterback. The Ducks were the recipients of four UCLA turnovers and still only came out with a 38-35 victory.

10. Northwestern (19): The AP voters will skip all of Northwestern history, and as a 5-0 team with a quality win against the Badgers, they have an argument. The Wildcats will fight for a top-10 spot, whether they end up there, depending on how voters react with Indiana.

11. Miami (12): The Hurricanes had COVID-19 problems, including a positive test for coach Manny Diaz, which led to the postponement of Saturday’s game against Georgia Tech.

12. Indiana (9): As I mentioned earlier, Hoosiers will be an interesting case study on how voters choose to punish or reward “quality loss.” Ohio State is a top three team, and Indiana was right in the game at the end when all college football was set to see if this year’s streak snapping would continue for coach Tom Allen. I guess they land in front of Wisconsin, but behind the Northwestern for reasons that include the “moral victory” treatment.

Georgia (13): JT Daniels had one of the most productive quarterback performances Georgia has seen since Aaron Murray was under center, and was still playing in doubt in the fourth quarter. No movement in the rankings and questions abound about the performance of the Bulldogs defense against the Mississippi state.

14. Wisconsin (10): The door is not closed for Wisconsin, which has a memorable season, though the ground given to Northwestern in the loss will be hard to compensate by less than a month until the Big Ten Championship Game. Graham Mertz looked out of his game for the first time all season, and the offense just didn’t click like it did in dominant performances against Illinois and Michigan.

15. Coastal Carolina (15): We could see the Chanticleers jump in front of Marshall after a huge program-changing victory against Appalachian State. Mountaineers are a division enemy of the Sun Belt East in addition to being class for the conference at the moment, so it’s another step in the program’s growth to turn them off and take control of the conference championship.

Iowa State (17): Matt Campbell’s team tops right now and absolutely dominated Kansas State in a win that moved cyclones one step closer to winning a spot in the Big 12 Championship Game.

17. Oklahoma (18): Lincoln Riley now has twice as many Bedlam wins as Mike Gundy, and Riley only took over as head coach of the Sooners prior to the 2017 season.

18. Marshall (15): Saturday’s match against Charlotte was postponed due to the 49ers having staff issues following the COVID-19 test and protocol.

19. USC (20): The Trojans won a solid 33-17 victory in Utah. The defense was particularly impressive with five forced turnovers, and only one touchdown was allowed (Utes scored their second touchdown after a fumbling return) as USC secured another key division victory for its Pac-12 title hope.

20. Texas (22): The Longhorns game against Kansas was postponed to Dec. 12 due to injuries and concerns from COVID-19 for the Jayhawks.

21. Auburn (23): Taking advantage of the opponent’s mistakes is a winning recipe that has worked well under Gus Malzahn, and from the moment Smoke Monday ran a bout back at the finish line for a maroon touchdown, there was little doubt the Tigers would hold on for a win against Tennessee.

22. Louisiana (24): The Ragin ‘Cajuns game against Central Arkansas was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns in the program, including a positive test for coach Billy Napier.

23. Oklahoma State (14): There’s a chance the cowboys fall completely out of the standings, but it’s far from top 15 status to completely out of the poll, and Saturday’s result really said more about Oklahoma than Oklahoma State. Plus, a win against Tulsa gives a word to voters who take head-to-head seriously among similar teams.

24. Tulsa (25): Down 14-0 late in the game, the Golden Hurricane stormed back to force overtime with a 37-yard, last-second touchdown pass on the fourth down of the third-string quarterback. Then after both teams kicked field goals in the first overtime, Tulsa went it out on Tulane with a game-winning pick six in double overtime. Incredible and unlikely as it was, winner keeps Tulsa in the top 25.

Nevada (NR): A spotlight opportunity for the Wolf Pack against San Diego State allowed the entire nation to see what a game-breaker Romeo Doubs is in the wide receiver position and how Nevada’s defense is good enough to win Mountain West.

Expected to drop: Liberty (21)




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