NCAA Football News

AP College Football Poll 2015: Week 9 Top 25 Rankings Announced

The college football season is becoming defined by game-winning plays on special teams. Did anyone see that coming?

Michigan and Florida State certainly didn't.  

As has been the norm this season, Week 8 offered another crazy slate of exciting finishes and surprising results for college football fans. Let's take a look at how the Associated Press and Bleacher Report polls were impacted by those results and analyze the week's action.

 

 

Analysis

Welcome to the one-loss club, Utah and Florida State.

USC stunned the Utes on Saturday night, as linebacker Cameron Smith's three interceptions—including one returned for a touchdown—paced the Trojans in their 42-24 upset win.

"These guys want to prove to everybody what type of team they are," interim head coach Clay Helton said, per ESPN. "When we play together and play like we did tonight, they're a very hard football team to beat. There's a lot of talent in that room."

While Utah remained in first place in the Pac-12 South, the loss dropped it down to a pool of one-loss teams that will be jockeying for position for one of the four spots in the playoff. Ohio State, Baylor, TCU, Michigan State, Clemson, LSU and Oklahoma State remain the top-ranked unbeaten programs.

Stanford remains in control of the Pac-12 North after a 31-14 win over Washington on Saturday, as California picked up its second conference loss Thursday night, losing to UCLA 40-24. Washington State remains a game behind the Cardinal, though at this point, Utah and Stanford seem to be on a collision course for the Pac-12 title game. 

Florida State's chances of reaching the ACC title game—or the College Football Playoff—were dealt a major blow Saturday, as the Seminoles lost to Georgia Tech 22-16, with Lance Austin returning a blocked field goal 78 yards for the game-winning touchdown as time expired. 

A certain fanbase up North could sympathize with Florida State's heartache, as Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk noted:

Another playoff contender, Alabama, nearly dropped out of the one-loss club, needing a late touchdown run from star running back Derrick Henry to get past Tennessee 19-14. It was certainly far from Alabama's finest performance, though the Crimson Tide kept their national title hopes alive.

"They just found a way to win, because we didn't play that great," Alabama head coach Nick Saban said rather succinctly, per ESPN.

Next week promises another intriguing slate of games, as Florida faces Georgia, USC takes on California, Notre Dame travels to Philadelphia to battle unbeaten Temple (yes, you read that correctly) and Stanford and Washington State clash in a key Pac-12 showdown.

It may not look like the greatest collections of matchups on paper, but if the last two weeks are any indication, another slew of upsets and crazy finishes are likely on tap.

 

 

Read more College Football news on BleacherReport.com

Pages