Louisville Football: 5 Reactions About The Final AP Poll

We take a look at our five reactions to the final AP Poll and where the Louisville football team finished in the last ranking of the year.

The 2016 season was full of ups and downs, but it sure was a great time to be a Louisville football fan. Well, at least for nine of the 13 weeks that the Cardinals played. All kidding side, it was an eventful season that will help launch the Cards into the next step going into 2017.

We saw Alabama finally fall, numerous Big Ten teams lose, and the rise of Lamar Jackson. It was a season to remember and one that we will not soon forget.

With that being said, let’s take a look at our five reactions to the final AP Poll:

Dec 30, 2016; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles running back Dalvin Cook (4) celebrates with defensive back Levonta Taylor (1) and linebacker Josh Brown (51) after a game against the Michigan Wolverines at Hard Rock Stadium. The Seminoles won 33-32. Mandatory Credit: Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

5. Florida State Didn’t Get Bumped Up Enough

Yes, I know most of you believe that Louisville should have been playing in the Orange Bowl over Florida State, but that couldn’t be further from the truth right now. If the Cardinals would have played the Wolverines, I’m sure that would have been one of our least favorite Louisville performances, maybe of all-time.

The Seminoles came into their match-up with Michigan as they tenth ranked team in America, however a win over the Wolverines only moved them up two spots?

Guys like Demarcus Walker and Dalvin Cook had this FSU football team playing extremely well in the second half of the season and they deserved to finish 2016 with a better ranking than number eight.

Jan 2, 2017; Pasadena, CA, USA; USC Trojans coach Clay Helton poses with the Leishman Trophy after the 103rd Rose Bowl against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Rose Bowl. USC defeated Penn State 52-49 in the highest scoring game in Rose Bowl history. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

4. Was USC Really The 3rd Best Team In America?

While I did think that the Trojans win over Penn State to lock up the Rose Bowl was impressive, I don’t think that should have launched them six spots in the final AP Poll. They finished the season 10-3 and apparently the Associated Press believes that they are the best team behind Alabama and Clemson.

Yeah, not so fast people.

The was a football team that struggled big-time at the beginning of the season, but after a few changes, were able to knock of #4 Washington and make their way into a New Year’s Six Bowl.

However, I’m not too sure they would have succeeded against programs like Ohio State, Oklahoma, or Florida State this season.

Dec 31, 2016; Phoenix, AZ, USA; An Ohio State fan reacts after a Clemson interception during the third quarter during the 2016 CFP semifinal at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher/The Arizona Republic via USA TODAY Sports

3. How Are There Still 4 Big Ten Teams In The Top Ten?

I just don’t understand why the Associated Press and the College Football Playoff committee was so obsessed with the Big Ten Conference in 2016. The only team that made it into the playoff was Ohio State, but they were demolished by the National Champions. Heck, they didn’t even score one point.

Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin, and Michigan all finished inside of the AP’s top ten in their final poll. It’s just a little surprising to me since all of those teams, except for the Badgers, lost their bowl games.

From watching all of the bowl games, it was pretty clear that the Big Ten wasn’t the best football conference in America this year. It was clearly the ACC and it wasn’t close.

Jan 9, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA; Clemson Tigers celebrate after winning the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game against the Alabama Crimson Tide 35-31at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

2. Mixed Emotions About Clemson Winning The National Title

This was definitely a tough pill to swallow, watching Louisville’s conference-rival take home the National Championship. Not to mention, this comes just a few years after Florida State won the title as well.

It’s a bitter pill to swallow because it shows every Louisville fan the hard truth about their football program. While there are great things happening, they are still a few steps behind the elite football programs in the ACC.

With that being said, the Cards had Clemson beat down in South Carolina, but weren’t able to pull out the win. Louisville is closing the gap with Clemson and Florida State, but there is still more work to do and that’s just fine.

Dec 31, 2016; Orlando , FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) hands the ball off against the LSU Tigers during the first half of the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

1. Satisfied With Louisville’s Final Ranking At No. 21

Honestly, I think we all should be satisfied with where the Cardinals finished this season in the AP Poll, especially since they lost their last three football games of 2016. It looks like the Lamar Jackson-effect had it’s hold on the Associated Press in their final college football ranking.

It hurts to think about those final three games, but Louisville ultimately didn’t have the offensive line and discipline to remain one of the best teams in the country. However, I do believe that they were there for most of the 2016 season.

The biggest key for them going forward is trying to figure out how to sustain that success for 12 games. There is a ton of upside for this football team moving into next season and it definitely doesn’t hurt that Lamar Jackson will be starting at quarterback.

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