The results from Rivalry Week set up a difficult task for voters who have turn in ballots for the updated college football rankings. But after all the dust has settled from nearly a handful of top-10 teams taking losses and a stunner in Columbus, Ohio, the Coaches Poll has settled on a top four of Georgia, Michigan, TCU and USC.
USC edged out Ohio State for the No. 4 spot by a narrow voting points margin (1381-to-1312) after the Buckeyes' 45-23 home loss to rival Michigan. Ohio State's three-spot drop from No. 2 to No. 5 was one of the notable falls from top teams, but far from the only one after a chaotic week on the field.
Further down in the rankings there was the expected adjustment for LSU, which dropped from No. 6 to No. 13 after its 38-23 loss at Texas A&M, and a similar drop for Clemson, now down to No. 11 after losing to South Carolina. Both teams were double-digit favorites heading into their regular-season finales, and while both teams are competing for a conference championship next weekend, they are entering those games without playoff hopes.
Oregon's loss to Oregon State wasn't as much of a stunner, though it did set up some movement from within the top 25. The Ducks dropped from No. 9 to No. 15 following the defeat while the Beavers soared from No. 22 to to No. 16 in the wake of one of the biggest wins of coach Jonathan Smith's career.
The bottom of the rankings saw UCF, UTSA and Mississippi State break into the top 25 while Ole Miss, Cincinnati and Coastal Carolina fell out of the rankings after losses.
Coaches Poll top 25
- Ohio State
- Penn State
- Kansas State
- Florida State
- Oregon State
- Notre Dame
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
- Mississippi State
Others receiving votes: Mississippi (83); Troy (58); NC State (58); Cincinnati (49); Boise State (37); Purdue (36); Pittsburgh (36); Coastal Carolina (26); Air Force (19); South Alabama (15); Illinois (10); Minnesota (7); Duke (7); Iowa (6); James Madison (2); Fresno State (2); Wake Forest (1)
Dropped out: No. 19 Mississippi; No. 21 Cincinnati; No. 23 Coastal Carolina