With everyone in action, and at least a few big games to look at, there was plenty of opportunity for movement in the rankings this week. Did anyone actually make a big jump though?
1. TCU (Last week: 1) The Horned Frogs hold on to the top spot after completely demolishing Stephen F Austin last Saturday. It helped that the only two teams that could legitimately push them for the top spot had some struggles in their games.
2. Oklahoma (Last week: 3) Why do the Sooners jump up into the second spot over the Bears? Because even though they looked lost in the first half on the road against a good Tennessee team, they still found a way to settle in and make a great comeback. Not to mention the spectacular finish in overtime, I’ve seen enough from them to know that they can handle a serious challenge this year.
3. Baylor (Last week: 2) The Bears had problems in the first half with their second straight overmatched opponent. What concerns me here is the defense. They’ve given up a lot of points to two bottom-feeder type teams. I’m just imagining what Big 12 offenses will do to them. Unfortunately for them, they have an off week this Saturday, so no chance to get those images out of my head.
4. West Virginia (Last week: 5) As I mentioned last week, the next few spots are going to be very fluid, as these teams are all pretty similar and putting one ahead of the other will solely be based on highly subjective and variable criteria. This week, West Virginia gets to lead this group, as they pounced on Liberty early and really only started giving up points in the second half when the game was no longer in doubt. This is what you do to overmatched opponents.
5. Kansas State (Last week: 4) The Wildcats are playing without their starting quarterback, and this was the perfect type of game to break in the new guy. The uncertainty surrounding how he will stand up to
6. Oklahoma State (Last week: 6) The Cowboys didn’t do anything particularly impressive in their game against Central Arkansas, but they did solidify my perception of them as a middle of the pack team that took care of business against a lower-tier opponent at home.
7. Texas Tech (Last week: 7) The defense was improved enough to keep Texas from leapfrogging them in the power rankings. I’m still a bit skeptical about how they will hold up to Big 12 offenses, but there isn’t any better reason to believe in the teams below them either.
8. Texas (Last week: 8) Turns out that I was right to stop myself from dragging them below the Cyclones, as they were able to put together a good defensive showing and decent offensive performance against Rice. Just like I wasn’t going to panic after that ugly loss to the Irish, I’m not going to get all giddy over the impressive first start for freshman QB Jerrod Heard
9. Iowa State (Last week: 9) Things were going pretty well for the Cyclones, leading at the half by a TD. But the offense couldn’t get going in the second half, and the defense couldn’t hold against the Iowa attack. The win would have gone a long way towards getting them out of the bottom two, but they just couldn’t pull it off.
10. Kansas (Last week: 10) The bye week came at a perfect time for the Jayhawks, as it prevents them from looking any worse than they did after the first quarter Saturday. Memphis spotted them an early lead, and then pulled the rug out from under them and absolutely destroyed them the rest of the way.
So who is ranked wrong? Is there some team that just can’t possibly be as good/bad as their ranking says they are? Fire away in the comments.