I took a lot of heat from Texas A&M fans last week for ranking the Aggies No. 8 -- four spots lower than the selection committee ranked them a couple of days later.
Mandel 1, Committee 0.
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West Virginia (7-1)
I was puzzled last week why the committee buried WVU all the way at 20th. Their resume isn't amazing, but they did beat 5-4 BYU out of conference. They ran for 341 yards Saturday against Kansas.
The Tigers' offense sputtered in the first half against Vandy without injured QB Sean White, who came in after halftime. RB Kamryn Pettway (25 carries, 173 yards) notched his fourth straight huge game.
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Penn State (7-2)
The Nittany Lions have morphed into an offensive juggernaut since that big Ohio State win. On Saturday, Saquon Barkley notched 211 rushing/receiving yards in a 41-14 rout of 5-4 Iowa.
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The Badgers hadn't defeated Northwestern in Evanston since 1999. Speedster Jazz Peavy (46-yard rushing TD, 73 yards receiving) and Wisconsin's defense put an end to that, 21-7.
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Coach Bobby Petrino and his players took their No. 7 committee ranking as a slight and put up 52 on BC. "We deserve to be in that fourth spot -- at least the fourth spot," said receiver Jaylen Smith.
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Ohio State (8-1)
After several underwhelming weeks, Ohio State's offense kicked into a high gear in a 62-3 rout of Nebraska. QB J.T. Barrett threw four TDs, and Curtis Samuel gained 178 yards on 13 touches.
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The Huskies were unfazed by the second of back-to-back road games Saturday at Cal, with QB Jake Browning throwing six TDs and the defense notching three interceptions in a 66-27 rout.
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The Wolverines continue to be absolutely dominant at home -- where they've played seven of their nine games. Jabrill Peppers played all over the field once again in Saturday's 59-3 rout of Maryland.
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Clemson's most complete performance of the season (54-0 over Syracuse) came despite Deshaun Watson leaving in the first half with a bruised shoulder. The Tigers can clinch their division next week.
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We knew 'Bama's defense was dominant, but once again it shut down LSU star Leonard Fournette (17 carries, 35 yards). Tide QB Jalen Hurts (221 total yards) took over the game in the fourth quarter.