Buckeyes take sole possession of AP poll feat
Baylor is No. 2 and Utah is up to fourth behind No. 1 Ohio State in The Associated Press college football poll.
The Bears have their best ranking ever. They reached No. 3 three times previously, including once last season.
Voters spread first-place votes around to six teams in the Top 25 released Sunday. The Buckeyes received 27, down 11 (38) from last week. Baylor has 13 and Utah has 16. No. 3 TCU received three first-place votes and No. 5 Clemson and No. 9 Texas A&M each received one.
Ohio State started the season a unanimous No. 1, but as the Buckeyes have sputtered support has slipped. Ohio State pulled away from Maryland in the second half Saturday for a 49-28 victory.
Now, there isn’t much separation in the top four. The Buckeyes have 1,411 poll points, 21 more than Baylor. TCU is four points ahead of Utah.
Ohio State is No. 1 for the 102nd time in the history of the AP poll, breaking a tie with Oklahoma for the most times on top of the rankings.
Teams that have been No. 1 in the AP poll more than 60 times.
102 – Ohio State
101 – Oklahoma
98 – Notre Dame
91 – Southern California
73 – Alabama
72 – Florida State
70 – Nebraska
68 – Miami
— Utah has its best ranking since finishing No. 2 in final 2008 poll. The Utes previous best regular-season ranking was No. 5 in 2004.
— No. 8 Florida has its best rankings since 2012 and No. 12 Michigan has its best since 2013.
— No. 7 Michigan State slipped three spots from No. 4, the second straight week the undefeated Spartans dropped after a close win against a losing team.
— No. 19 Oklahoma dropped nine spots after losing to Texas.
— No. 20 Northwestern fell seven places after being shut out by Michigan.
Southern California and Georgia both started the season ranked in the top 10 with what seemed like legitimate hopes to reach College Football Playoff.
Six weeks into the season, both traditional powers are out of the rankings and likely out of the playoff chance. The Trojans flopped on Thursday at home against Washington and the Bulldogs blew a 21-point lead at Tennessee on Saturday.
Georgia is out of the rankings for the first time since the end of 2013.
— With first-year coach Tom Herman, No. 24 Houston is ranked this week for the first time since the final 2011 Top 25. Those Cougars with coach Kevin Sumlin were 12-0, but lost the Conference USA title game.
— No. 25 Duke is back after making a brief appearance earlier this season.
RANKED VS. RANKED
No. 8 Florida at No. 6 LSU. The Gators could all but wrap up the SEC East against Heisman front-runner Leonard Fournette.
No. 4 Michigan State at No. 12 Michigan. The Spartans have won six of the last seven but that was BH — Before Harbaugh.
No. 10 Alabama at No. 9 Texas A&M. The Crimson Tide is tough when it has no room for error.
No. 18 UCLA at No. 15 Stanford, Thursday night. The Cardinal have won seven straight against the Bruins.
No. 17 Iowa at No. 20 Northwestern. Huge Big Ten West matchup.