The Top Fan's Top 25 - Week One
Posted By:Brett Haynes - Greenville, SC Tags: college football
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Now that nearly every top 25 team has played a game, we know more about them. It will be a little but tougher to leave Auburn number one this week following their close victory at home over Utah State, but hey, a win is a win for the defending champs - even if in the last minute and with an onsides kick...LSU and Boise State both scored nice victories, so those two teams will make a little improvement, moving up to 2nd and 3rd, respectively...Although Miami and Maryland are still scheduled to play their opener tonight, they will not have an impact on my poll unless one of them wins by 50. So here is my top 25 as we head towards week two...
1. Auburn (1-0) - defeated Utah State, 42-38. Last week: 1. Well, this ranking right now has me under the gun! Auburn needed two late 4th quarter scores to get by a team that probably won't be BCS contending any decade soon. The Tigers, though, in trademark fashion, found a way to win, and now see their winning streak stand at 15 games. Next: #18 Mississippi State.
2. LSU (1-0) - defeated then #5 Oregon, 40-27. Last week: 5. The Tigers were impressive in their shutting down of the Duck running game. They only gave up 95 yards on the ground. The defense - packed with athletes - forced four Oregon turnovers which turned into 20 points. This was an impressive win. Next: Northwestern State.
3. Boise State (1-0) - defeated then #19 Georgia, 35-21. Last week: 7. Kellen Moore and company proved once again that they can win the big game. On another neutral field, Boise took every punch UGA had, absorbed them, and then struck back with their own. Eventually people will quit talking down on the Broncos. I'm just not sure how many huge wins it will take. Next: at Toledo (9-16).
4 - *** TIE - Alabama (1-0) - defeated Kent State, 48-7. Last week: 2. The Tide are gonna roll this year, it just depends how far and how fast. This 41-point win was as expected, and was a practice of sorts. Stud running back Trent Richardson went for 3 touchdowns, though just 37 yards. The question for Bama is at QB, where AJ McCarron threw just 14 completions (14-23) and had 2 passes picked off. Next: at Penn State.
4 - *** TIE - Oklahoma (1-0) - defeated Tulsa, 47-14. Last week: 3. Many nationwide - including most major polls - have the Sooners number one. But while I can see their reasoning, OU has lots of competition at the top. I am not going to just throw them into the top 3 without a cause yet. LSU and Boise each have a big win, and Auburn is the defending champ. So I have this team tied at 4th with a very dangerous and mean Alabama team. Next: at #8 FSU (two weeks away)
6. Wisconsin (1-0) - defeated UNLV, 51-17. Last week: 8. To get us started last Thursday night, the Badgers and new QB Russell Wilson put on a clinic against UNLV. This program has become one of the top offensive programs in America, averaging 41.5 points per game in 2010, and now 51 points in week one of 2011. The defense aint bad, either. Next: Oregon State.
7. Stanford (1-0) - defeated San Jose State, 57-3. Last week: 6. Quarterback Andrew Luck will no doubt be a Heisman front runner in 2011. He only threw 26 passes, but went for 171 yards and 2 scores before being taken out early. There isn't a whole heck of a lot to take away from a game like this. Next: at Duke.
8. Florida State (1-0) - defeated Louisiana Monroe, 34-0. Last week: 9. Props to the Seminoles for the shutout. FSU and their fans are expecting big things on the other side of the ball from QB EJ Manual, too. So far so good here in 2011. This past weekend he went 22 of 34 for 252 yards, two scores and an INT. FSU plays Oklahoma in two weeks. We will know more about them then. Next: Charleston Southern.
9. Nebraska (1-0) - defeated Chattanooga, 40-7. Last week: 11. The Huskers, known for Coach Bo Pelini's stout defenses, are still seeking their first shutout since 2009 after Chattanooga scored on the backups in the second half Saturday. Nebraska has now held opponents to ten points or less 15 times in Pelini's three years in Lincoln. Next: Fresno State.
10. Virginia Tech (1-0) - defeated Appalachian State 66-13. Last week: 14. The Hokies made a point in this game as far as being focused. This was a complete no-doubter, and showed that VT will be a force to be dealt with. 66 points is a lot no matter the opposition, and we know the VT defense will be good as always. Maybe VT can finally put together that huge year. QB Logan Thomas was 9-19 and two scores before being taken out very early. Next: at East Carolina.
11. Oregon (0-1) - lost to then #5 LSU, 40-27. Last week: 4. The Ducks drop seven spots in my poll following a loss to LSU in the Jerry Dome. As mentioned in ouf forum, the Ducks are just lacking a little defense. The LSU defense is what was the difference in the game, taking it away from Oregon and scoring 20 points from it. When Oregon can do the same to their opponent's offense, they will get over the national hump. Next: Nevada.
12. South Carolina (1-0) - defeated East Carolina, 56-37. Last week: 12. There is one thing for sure: this is quarterback Stephen Garcia's team. I still do not understand why Coach Steve Spurrier started Connor Shaw. But regardless of the reason, he inserted Garcia down 17-0 in the 2nd quarter, and Garcia led the Gamecocks to 56 points. This win was not pretty, and Spurrier's decision to me was very questionable, but USC is 1-0 no matter how you slice it. Next: at Georgia.
13. Florida (1-0) - defeated FAU, 41-3. Last week: 13. In Will Muschamp's debut as head coach, the Swamp was treated to a Gator beat-down. This game was 31-3 just as the second half began as Chris Rainey scored on special teams, rushing and receiving for 18 of Florida's 41 points. Next: UAB.
14. Arkansas (1-0) defeated Missouri State, 51-7. Last week: 16. Once again it looks as if the Razorbacks will be a strong team. There is little that can be taken from this game except for a spectacular performance on special teams by Joe Adams, who took returns of 61 and 69 yards to the house. Next: New Mexico.
15. Texas - defeated Rice, 34-9. Last week: 15. It wasn't exactly blow-out fashion, but Texas is 1-0 and a win is a win for the Longhorns. That isn't a feeling they experienced often in 2010, so it is a good start. Texas unveiled a new offense, and it took about three quarters to catch fire. But 21 late points put this game away. Freshman Jaxson Shipley - younger brother of UT record-setter Jordan - scored for the Horns. Next: BYU.
16. Oklahoma State (1-0) - defeated Louisiana Lafaytette, 61-34. Last week: 21. I had the Cowboys a lot further back in my preseason poll than the AP did (21st compared to 9th). The reasoning being the loss of OC Dana Holgorsen to West Virginia. But I bumped them up five spots this week because it looks like they will again be able to score in bunches. Not much D, though - 34 points given up to LALU? Next: Arizona.
17. Ohio State (1-0) defeated Akron, 42-0. Last Week: 17. An impressive win for Luke Fickell in his opener for his alma mater. Joe Bauserman, taking over for Terrelle Pryor, went 12 of 16 for 116 yards and three touchdowns. Mainly, he did not throw an INT. Considering the Buckeyes went into this game with eight players suspended, this is as good as you could have hoped for in your opener if you are an OSU fan. Next: Toledo.
18. Mississippi State (1-0) - defeated Memphis, 59-14. Oh, the Bulldogs are looking strong! This is the forgotten team of the SEC West, and they are out to change that. Dan Mullen's third squad absolutely whipped Memphis away from home, leading by 24 at the half, and pouring on more in the second half. Next: at #1 Auburn.
19. Texas A&M (1-0) - defeated SMU, 46-14. Last week: 20. As I mention every week, I am hesitant of TAMU. It seems like they get the hype every year, but never make the BCS. Currently, the AP has them (as I type) at 8th. I am not buying that yet. I bumped them up a spot for a nice win, but still am on the fence with the Aggies. Next: Idaho.
20. West Virginia (1-0) - defeated Marshall, 34-13. Last week: 19. This game was called in the 4th quarter as lightning came into the area. This was one of six games nationwide that were delayed or cancelled due to Mother Nature. QB Geno Smith led the way for WVU going 26-35 for 249 yards and two touchdowns and no INTs. Coach Dana Holgorsen gets a win in his coaching debut. Next: Norfolk State.
21. TCU (0-1) - Lost to Baylor, 50-48. Last week: 10. The Horned Frogs went into Baylor, and made one hell of a second half comebck - but it was all for not. Down 23 points in the 3rd quarter, TCU rallied to take the lead. But Baylor scored with 1:04 to go to retake the lead and score one of the Bears biggest triumphs in seasons. The Frogs are certainly not as strong as a year ago. But they have heart and will win many games to come. Next: at Air Force.
22. Baylor (1-0) - defeated then #10 TCU, 50-48. Last week: unranked. The Bears enter the top 25 having knocked off TCU and their long winning streak. The character of this win is what I like. The Bears blew a huge second half lead, but were able to regroup at the end for the final points they needed. Baylor has some good players and will make some noise in 2011. Next: Stephen F. Austin.
23. Missouri (1-0) - defeated Miami, OH, 17-6. Last week: 23. If there were a team (besides Auburn) that might need to drop this week, it is Mizzou. Playing lowly Miami of Ohio, the Tigers were lucky enough to escape with a win, up just four early in 4th quarter play. 17 points is dismal. They will have to get it together or this is a team that won't be ranked very long. Next: at #25 Arizona State.
24. Clemson (1-0) - defeated Troy, 43-19. Last week: 24. I thought the Tigers win over Troy was just enough to keep them in my top 25, staying in the same spot because this game was still close in the third quarter. Freshmen Mike Bellamy at running back and Sammy Watkins at wide-reciever scored touchdowns of 75 and 33 yards, respectively, on their very first college plays from srimmage. The defense is young, and will need to see some holes plugged, but the athletes are there. Next: Wofford.
25. Arizona State (1-0) - defeated UC Davis, 48-14. Last week: unranked. The Sun Devils will play host to Missouri next week, and at that point we will know much more about both of those teams. UC Davis isn't exactly a measuring stick, so I will take this 34-point win for what it is worth, and wait to hold judgement on ASU until after next weekend. Next: Missouri.
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