Update: There was a glitch that prevented the rankings from showing. The glitch is fixed and the rankings are up.
You may be wondering why there is a big picture of the Blessed Mother to lead off the post. It’s simple. I and the rest of us clad in purple & gold owe her. Big time. On the 4th down play and the last play of the game (both of them), I was furiously saying the Hail Mary in the LSU student section. If those flags aren’t miraculous intercession, I don’t know what is. I have prayed like that during a game twice-the NFC championship game against the Vikings and the LSU v. Auburn game in 2007 (Byrd’s catch with a second left-the most beautiful pass & catch I’ve seen in Death Valley). These Tigers are going to kill me, and even though they should have slaughtered the Vols, that was a rare and fun experience.
In the rest of the college football world, we now have clear front-runners in the top 2 conferences. Oregon will need a major upset to lose the PAC-10, and Alabama made quite a statement to the rest of the SEC West. In the Big 12, Oklahoma looks to take the Big 12 South with the win in the Red River Rivalry. The Big 10 is still wide open, and the ACC is anyone’s guess.
What is becoming clearer is that Boise St. is likely out of luck this year. Their wins are not nearly as impressive as the displays put on by Bama and Oregon. Even if those teams lose once, they’re still over Boise (or a team that beats them in route to a undefeated or 1 loss year). I think Nebraska and Ohio St. have a chance to break into the picture, but I think it’s SEC champ v. PAC-10 champ in the title game this year.
Of course, that could change dramatically in a week, which is what makes this so much fun.
In other college football news, Texas A&M learned you can’t turn the ball over 5 times and win (you can with 4-see Louisiana State University *Good God, how did we win that game? Thank you Blessed Mother!*). This was a real pity, b/c watching them Thursday they have a great team. They’ll be a wild card in the South, but if they could control the turnovers they could be scary. You have to think they’ll control them in one or two games that they’ll steamroll someone they’re not supposed to; question is when.
Round up the recap, Notre Dame won the Pope bowl, USC finally lost, and Denard Robinson can probably start thinking about what pose he wants for his portrait next to the other Heisman winners. To the rankings!
We had 5 voters this week, as MJ wimped out on us (apparently, he had “more important” things to do. Jeesh. Your wife having a baby isn’t that big of a deal 😉 ).
- Alabama (4) (5-0) – They’ve got to lose sometime in the regular season…right? (MD) 
- Oregon (1) (5-0) – With the exception of the SEC, the PAC 10 has been the best conference in the NCAA. Oregon just showed they and the PAC 10 are very much for real.(P) 
- Boise State (4-0) (TIE w/ Oregon) – Every VA Tech victory almost counts as a win for them as well.(P) 
- Ohio State (5-0) – I predicted last week that the Illini would, as they usually do, give the Buckeyes fits. Sure enough, the Big Ten opener for Ohio State stayed true to form. Some teams just match up well against others, regardless of the respective records. Some people, no doubt, will seek to grade the Buckeyes down for a less-than-stellar-but-still-solid 24-13 win. Those would be the people who don’t pay attention to the history of certain in-conference matchups. (Statistical note mentioned during Saturday’s game: In the past 20 meetings Ohio State is only 11-9 against the Illini.) (J) 
- TCU (5-0) – If Boise St. isn’t going advance, they certainly won’t until they play Utah. 
- Nebraska (4-0) (TIE w/ TCU) – Big Ten, watch out next year. Bevo, watch out in a couple of weeks – after your losses to the Bruins and the Sooners, you’ve been exposed as weak, and the Cornhuskers, who won’t soon forget the Big 12 Championship game, smell blood.(J) 
- Oklahoma (5-0) – they like keeping it close, don’t they? 
- Utah (4-0) – had a bye and benefited from the chaos around them to rise up the polls. (M) 
- Arizona (4-0) – Always tough to win the game right off a big win; but they managed to do it to stay in the conversation (M). 
- Auburn (5-0) (TIE w/ Arizona) – Crushing cupcakes is exactly what Auburn needed to do after a tough opening month. 
- LSU (5-0) – Lost in the last minute was the fact that the offense behind Lee actually moved the ball. Outside of turnovers (two of which from Jefferson), LSU’s offense looked good running the ball. (M) 
- Michigan State (5-0) – Exposed the supposedly tough Badgers(DH) 
- Michigan (5-0) – If Robinson stays healthy, the only team that could upset Ohio State in Big 10 play (DH) 
- Stanford (4-1) – Talk about a tale of two halves, at one point they were ahead of the Ducks 21-3! (DH) 
- Arkansas (3-1) – that loss to Bama looks a LOT better (MD) 
- Miami (FL) (3-1) – Beating Clemson was nice, but not proved that they are the class of the ACC (MD) 
- Florida (4-1) – Everyone says they’ll roll over the Tigers, but I’m not sure. Their offense is struggling as well, as coming off a humiliation like that to meet a Tiger team that was preparing for the game all week (particularly in the last minute of their game, apparently) is dangerous for Florida. 
- Iowa (4-1) – Took care of the pretending Nittany Lions (DH) 
- Nevada (5-0) – Could they be the team that ends Boise State’s dream? (DH) 
- Oklahoma State (4-0) – One of a number of unbeatens that probably won’t remain unbeaten – but here they are anyway. (P) [NR]
- Missouri (4-0) – could Nebraska/Missouri be better and more important to the Big 12 than the Red River Rivalry? (MD) 
- South Carolina (3-1) – Hoping to catch Bama cocky when they come to Columbia. Here in Baton Rouge, we wish we could be so lucky. (MD) 
- Wisconsin (4-1) – Will the Badgers fold or come back fighting? (DH) 
- Northwestern (5-0) – Again, they are unbeaten. Might as well give them one moment in the sun.(P) [NR]
- Kansas State (4-0) – They haven’t played anyone, but get the chance to prove it against Nebraska. It’s a nice story-but they’ll lose big. (MD) [NR]
- USC (4-1) (TIE w/ Kansas State) – I knew USC would have some trouble in the PAC-10, but this early? Against Washington? At home? If I was a Trojan, I would be dreading going to Stanford this Saturday. 
Others receiving votes: Air Force, Florida State, UCLA, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Houston, and Oregon State.