AP Top 25: Notre Dame, Clemson rise; Ohio St, Penn St tumble
Notre Dame and Clemson climbed while Ohio State and Penn State tumbled out of the top 10, leaving the latest Associated Press college football poll looking a lot like the College Football Playoff rankings — with one big difference.
Alabama remained No. 1 in the AP Top 25 on Sunday , as it has been since the preseason . No. 2 Georgia picked up three more first-place votes for a total of five. In the playoff rankings, Georgia is No. 1 and Alabama is No. 2. Notre Dame moved up two spots to No. 3 and Clemson did the same to No. 4. Oklahoma jumped three spots to No. 5, leaving those three in the same order as the selection committee had them on Tuesday.
Unbeaten Wisconsin slipped two spots to No. 6 but is now the highest ranked team in the Big Ten. Ohio State fell eight spots to No. 11 after getting blown out at Iowa and Penn State dropped nine to No. 16 after spending all season in the top 10.
For the first time this season, the Big Ten has only one team ranked in the top 10. The conference has had as many as four teams in the first 10 at times this season, but with Michigan State, Penn State, Ohio State and Michigan beating up each other, plus surprising losses by those East Division powers to Iowa and Northwestern the past two weeks, the Big Ten has devoured itself.
— Notre Dame has its highest AP ranking since the 2012 season, when the Irish had an unbeaten regular season and reached No. 1 before losing the BCS title game to Alabama.
— No. 7 Miami has its best ranking since 2013, when the Hurricanes reached No. 7 for two weeks in late October. That team lost four of six to finish the season unranked. The last time Miami was ranked in the top 10 in November was 2005.
— No. 12 Michigan State made the biggest move in the rankings, jumping 12 spots after beating Penn State on a last-second field goal.
— No. 10 Auburn jumped up six spots after winning at Texas A&M .
— No. 19 Washington State also moved up six places in the rankings after beating Stanford .
— No. 9 Washington moved back into the top 10, jumping three spots after blowing out Oregon .
— No. 17 Virginia Tech slid three spots after losing at Miami .
Iowa's surprising romp of Ohio State pushed the Hawkeyes into the rankings for the first time this season at No. 25. It's the first time since September 2005 that both Iowa and Iowa State are ranked at the same time. The Cyclones are 24th. The last time Iowa and Iowa State were both ranked in November was 2002.
— No. 21 Michigan is back in the Top 25 after being out for two weeks.
— No. 22 South Florida moved back in after being out for a week.
— No. 23 West Virginia is back in again. The Mountaineers, who started the season ranked, have made six poll appearances this season but never for more than two consecutive weeks.
— LSU dropped out after losing to Alabama .
— North Carolina State is out after a second straight loss , this time to Clemson.
— Stanford fell out of the rankings again after losing for the third time this season.
— Arizona is out after one week following a loss to USC .
Big Ten — 6
Big 12 — 5
SEC — 4
Pac-12 — 3
ACC — 3
American — 3
Independent — 1
RANKED vs. RANKED
For the second straight week, seven games match ranked teams, which ties an AP poll-era (1936-present) record.
No. 1 Alabama at No. 18 Mississippi State. With some help from Georgia, the Tide can clinch the SEC West.
No. 2 Georgia at No. 10 Auburn. The Bulldogs already have clinched a trip to Atlanta as SEC East champs, but this is for playoff positioning.
No. 3 Notre Dame at No. 7 Miami. Just like old times. The first meeting between the Irish and Hurricanes as top-10 teams since 1990.
No. 5 Oklahoma vs. No. 8 TCU. The winner grabs sole possession and firm control of first place in the Big 12.
No. 6 Wisconsin vs. No. 25 Iowa. Badgers can clinch the Big Ten West.
No. 11 Ohio State vs No. 13 Michigan State. First in the Big Ten East on the line.
No. 12 Oklahoma State at No. 24 Iowa State. Cyclones already have victories against TCU and Oklahoma.
Follow Ralph D. Russo at www.Twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP
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