Week 10 CFN Rankings - The Top 25

Posted Nov 4, 2012

Week 10 CFN Rankings - The Top 25. LSU lost, but should it be rewarded for the performance against Bama?

CFN 2012 Rankings

Nov. 4, Week 10

- 2012 BCS Rankings
- 2012 AP Rankings
- 2012 Coaches' Poll
- Scoreboard & Game Recaps
- CFN Week 10 Rankings No. 26 to 124

1. Alabama 9-0
Last Week: W, LSU 21-17
Why Alabama Should Be No. 1: The Crimson Tide did what few other have in recent years, win in Death Valley on a Saturday night. On a night when it did not put forth an "A" game, ‘Bama and QB AJ McCarron were heroic when it mattered most, driving 72 yards in the final 90 seconds to stun No. 5 LSU in its own building.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Yeah, the win in Baton Rouge was immense, but the Tide looked more vulnerable than at any point in the season. Florida probably had a slightly easier time with LSU than did ‘Bama, which was outgained by more than 100 yards on the night, and really stumbled on third downs.

2. Oregon 9-0
Last Week: W, USC 62-51
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: What's left for the Ducks to prove? They went into The Coliseum and answered their remaining critics by slapping around the Trojans D for 730 yards and a history book-defying 62 points. There's no one left on the regular season schedule capable of slowing down a Chip Kelly attack that's yet to be held below 42 points.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: All of that talk about this being Oregon's best D in years probably has died down a bit, right? The Ducks didn't play a whole lot of defense in Los Angeles, giving up 615 yards and seven offensive touchdowns to the Trojans.

3. Kansas State 9-0
Last Week: W, Oklahoma State 44-30
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Wildcats continue to dispose of ranked opponents with relative ease, spanking the visiting Cowboys behind four turnovers and a crucial 100-yard return from Tyler Lockett. Using a total team effort approach, Kansas State has rung up 154 points in the last three games with West Virginia, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: The K-State D showed a little more softness than usual in Manhattan, yielding more than 500 yards in the Week 10 win. What's the status of QB Collin Klein's right wrist? Arguably the most valuable player in America, he did not finish the game, a concern heading into the final three regular season games.

4. LSU 7-2
Last Week: L, Alabama 21-17
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: You can't complain about the Tigers' two losses, to one-loss Florida and unbeaten Alabama this past Saturday night. The Tigers played a terrific game against the defending champs, shutting down their offense for most of the evening, and getting what might have been the long-awaited breakout game from QB Zach Mettenberger.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Obviously, there isn't a better two-loss team in the country, but those two losses are going to put somewhat of a ceiling atop LSU's upward mobility. The offense has been sporadic and inconsistent for much of the season, saddled with a shuffled line and the up-and-down play of Mettenberger in the passing game.

5. Georgia 8-1
Last Week: W, Ole Miss 37-10
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Bulldogs shook off a post-Cocktail Party hangover—and a 10-0 deficit—to race past a dangerous Ole Miss team. Spearheaded by a great game from QB Aaron Murray and the defense, Georgia is one more small step away from locking down a date with the West Division champ for an SEC title.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Yeah, Georgia has earned some street cred with back-to-back wins over Florida and Ole Miss, but the schedule is still somewhat soft when compared to other SEC heavyweights. As far as one-loss teams go, the Bulldogs' flub to South Carolina, 35-7, is a particularly bad eyesore.

6. Notre Dame 9-0
Last Week: W, Pittsburgh 29-26
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: Call it ugly or whatever, but the Irish's triple-overtime, comeback win over Pitt was the stuff of which championships are made. Notre Dame, clearly off after beating Oklahoma in Norman a week ago, battled back from a 20-6 fourth-quarter deficit to remain unbeaten this late into the season for the first time in two decades.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Needing to rally to defeat an average Pitt team in South Bend didn't help the Irish's cause in the court of public opinion. The erratic behavior of the offense and QB Everett Golson has nearly cost this team on multiple occasions against inferior opponents in 2012.

7. Florida 8-1
Last Week: W, Missouri 14-7
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Gators snapped out of their post-Cocktail Party hangover just in time to avoid Mizzou's upset bid. The defense is among the nastiest in America, and wins over surging Texas A&M, LSU and South Carolina ensure that Florida will remain in top 5 contention.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Florida flat-out played poorly on Saturday, a week after looking sloppy in the lone loss to Georgia. The offense continues to be feeble and painfully inconsistent, managing just 11 first downs and 276 total yards in the Week 10 win.

8. South Carolina 7-2
Last Week: Idle
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Gamecocks got a well-deserved break in the action after facing Georgia, LSU, Florida and Tennessee in successive weeks. Spearheaded by one of the most talented defenses in the country, South Carolina hammered the SEC East frontrunner Bulldogs, and slipped by the Vols two weeks ago.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Since raising the bar with the blowout of the Dawgs, South Carolina has not been very sharp. The Gamecocks didn't measure up versus the Tigers and the Gators, and almost got picked off by an average Vols team. The season-ending injury to RB Marcus Lattimore robs an already erratic offense of its best offensive weapon.

9. Texas A&M 7-2
Last Week: W, Mississippi State 38-13
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Aggies are fitting into the SEC West quite well in their debut in the division. They've now whipped Auburn and a pretty good Mississippi State team for 101 combined points in consecutive wins. A&M's only losses have come against two of the nation's premier teams, Florida and LSU.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Better offenses will move the ball on the Aggies D, much the way Louisiana Tech did in October. That high-powered, Johnny Manziel-led attack was impotent in games with the Gators and the Tigers, a troubling sign with a visit to Tuscaloosa up next.

10. Florida State 8-1
Last Week: Idle
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Seminoles have bounced back from their lone loss of 2012—a one-pointer on the road—by winning three straight games convincingly. They own a victory over ranked Clemson and a Miami team, at Sun Life Stadium, that's now in the driver's seat to win the ACC Coastal Division.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Florida State has played a very weak non-conference schedule, and hasn't been tested the way other top 10 programs have this season. NC State is a decent team, but not what would be labeled a quality loss for a ‘Noles team that once had visions of a national title shot in 2012.

11. Clemson 8-1
Last Week: W, Duke 56-20
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: Since losing to Florida State on Sept. 22, the Tigers have kept their foot on the gas, and haven't tapped the brakes since. They've won five in a row, none by less two touchdowns, riding a high-octane offense that just got done slapping around Duke for more than 700 yards of exquisitely balanced offense.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Ranked victims? Anywhere? To be fair about Clemson's gaudy numbers, they've largely come against second-rate opponents, many of whom will be fortunate to finish the season in a postseason game. The Tigers' signature win of the year came against a Virginia Tech team that's now a game under .500.

12. Ohio State 10-0
Last Week: W, Illinois, 52-22
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Buckeyes dominated exactly the way they were supposed to on Saturday in Columbus, more than tripling the output of the Illini. QB Braxton Miller did his thing, but RB Carlos Hyde continues to be a factor in Urban Meyer's high-scoring offensive attack.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: When compared to other unbeaten teams in the FBS, Ohio State's schedule is light on notable wins. There's Nebraska and Penn State, but the program lacks that one game that stands out as a true defining victory that can elevate it to a higher spot in the rankings.

13. Oklahoma 6-2
Last Week: W, Iowa State 35-20
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Sooners bounced back from their second defeat of the season, navigating a tricky trip to Jack Trice Stadium behind the passing of Landry Jones and the running of Brennan Clay. Oklahoma's two losses have come against Kansas State and Notre Dame, two of the premier teams in the country.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: The losses to the Wildcats and the Irish get somewhat devalued by the fact that both occurred in Norman. The Sooners have been inconsistent on a macro level in the running game this season, both when they're running it and when they're attempting to stop it.

14. Oregon State 7-1
Last Week: W, Arizona State 36-26
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Beavers recovered from their lone loss of the year with an impressive win over the Sun Devils. It'll be a tough road, but Oregon State still controls its own destiny in the Pac-12 North, courtesy of impressive September road wins over Arizona and UCLA.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Oregon State's lone loss came against a mediocre Washington squad that's just a game above .500. The O-line has been just average in Corvallis, ranking 87th in sacks allowed, and blocking for the nation's 105th-ranked ground game.

15. UCLA 7-2
Last Week: W, Arizona 66-10
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: All of a sudden, the Bruins are the hottest Pac-12 team this side of Eugene. They've won three in a row, capped by an impressive 66-10 rout of the same Arizona team that just defeated USC a week ago. UCLA also owns a win over Nebraska, which is the favorite to win the Big Ten championship.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: The loss to Cal on Oct. 6 is becoming increasingly worse as the season comes to an end. The Bruins were dominated by the Bears in Berkeley, 43-17, by a team that's now 3-7 and unlikely to win another game this season.

16. Nebraska 7-2
Last Week: W, Michigan State 28-24
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Huskers notched their biggest road win of the season, beating the Spartans in the waning seconds to remain in control of the Big Ten Legends Division. The league's best offense cranked out nearly 500 yards, behind the running of QB Taylor Martinez and RB Ameer Abdullah, against a stout and talent-laden Michigan State D.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Nebraska hasn't exactly been blowing people out in 2012, narrowly escaping its Big Ten foes throughout the fall. The defense can be susceptible to breakdowns on occasions, a bunch of which occurred during a 63-38 loss to Ohio State on Oct. 6.

17. Mississippi State 7-2
Last Week: L, Texas A&M 38-13
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: Hey, it's never a plus to lose back-to-back games, but Alabama and Texas A&M are two of the country's top 10 programs. There's still an opportunity for this squad to rally around the passing of Tyler Russell, running of Ladarius Perkins and play of the D to win 10 games in 2012.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: It's one thing to lose to highly-ranked opponents. It's another thing entirely to get outclassed in consecutive games by a combined score of 76-20, which is what's happened to the Bulldogs. This team still doesn't have a signature win, and time is running out on that quest.

18. Stanford 7-2
Last Week: W, Colorado 48-0
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Cardinal took care of business as expected in Boulder, easily disposing of an overmatched Colorado team. Stanford has fallen twice by a touchdown or less, but remains in the mix for a Pac-12 North title, thanks in large part to a rugged and well-coached defense.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: No one ought to get too excited by the five offensive touchdowns scored by Stanford over the weekend. A matchup with Colorado is a poor barometer for success, especially for an offense that has had problem with consistency and sustained excellence all season long.

19. Louisville 9-0
Last Week: W, Temple 45-17
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: After falling behind early to Temple, the Cardinals self-corrected mistakes on the fly and never looked back in a blowout win. The offense continues to be balanced, while Teddy Bridgewater's five touchdown passes were further proof of his maturation as a hurler.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: The record looks great, but the lineup of victims most certainly does not. The Cards' best win of the year? Take your pick between North Carolina and Cincinnati, neither of which was by more than five points.

20. Texas 7-2
Last Week: W, Texas Tech 31-22
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: It shouldn't be. Call this a shaky, the team-has-the-talent-to-do-more ranking. Consistency is the issue, along with a shaky defense, but the offense finally started to look a bit better in a nice win over Texas Tech. Don't look now, but everything is set up nicely with home games against Iowa State and TCU before getting a shot at doing something special against Kansas State.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Texas 21, Kansas 17. The loss to West Virginia is looking worse and worse, and while beating Ole Miss, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech is nice, what Longhorn team are we getting next week? This is the flakiest of the flaky teams with this much talent.

21. Arizona 5-4
Last Week: L, UCLA 66-10
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Wildcats own wins over Oklahoma State and USC, riding one of the country's highest powered and versatile offenses. Arizona is second to only Oregon in Pac-12 offensive machines, rolling out 520 yards per game.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Arizona has been horrible outside of Tucson this season, coming up very small in games with Oregon, Stanford and UCLA. Saturday night in the Rose Bowl, the Cats were obliterated by the Bruins, 66-10, performing like an FCS opponent.

22. USC 6-3
Last Week: L, Oregon 62-51
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: Few schools in America have a more exciting passing attack than the one at Troy. As long as Matt Barkley is upright, and Marqise Lee and Robert Woods are running routes, the Trojans are going to be a dangerous team.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: As Pac-12 favorites go, USC wound up being an imposter in 2012. The Trojans were whipped by the Ducks in The Coliseum, a second straight defeat. The D has gotten trampled in the back-to-back losses, yielding 101 combined points to Arizona and Oregon.

23. Northwestern 7-2
Last Week: Idle
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Wildcats are off to an improbable 7-2 start, ensuring that the current senior class will be the winningest five-year class in school history. Prior to going on a bye, they defeated Iowa to remain on the fringe of contention in the Legends Division.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: It's been a nice year for Pat Fitzgerald's squad, but where are the statement wins? Northwestern has largely feasted on mediocrity, riding the backs of the likes of Syracuse, Boston College and Minnesota to get to this point.

24. Michigan 6-3
Last Game: W, Minnesota 35-13
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: No Denard. No problem. Playing without their starting quarterback, the Wolverines hung up their most points in three weeks to hold on to the Little Brown Jug. QB Devin Gardner accounted for three touchdowns, while the D held a sixth opponent to no more than 13 points in a game.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: Yeah, Michigan has fallen to three quality opponents, Alabama, Notre Dame and Nebraska, but where are the quality wins? Michigan State and Minnesota are decent, but neither school qualifies as refrigerator material.

25. Louisiana Tech 8-1
Last Week: W, Texas-San Antonio 51-27
Why The Ranking Should Be Higher: The Bulldogs are one of the nation's scoring machines, ringing up at least 52 points in all but two games this season. Louisiana Tech's only loss of the year came by two points to a Texas A&M team that has shot up into the top 10 with consecutive blowouts of Auburn and Mississippi State.
Why The Ranking Should Be Lower: The more Louisiana Tech plays, the worse its schedule looks. Not only do the Bulldogs play in the WAC, but their so-called signature wins came versus 3-6 Virginia and 2-7 Illinois. The defense is flimsy, particularly by the standard set by other ranked teams.
- CFN Week 10 Rankings No. 26 to 124