By:  Ryan Mullican

20. Michigan State
Now THAT was Big10 football if I’ve ever seen it. Poor QB play in rough and tumble weather, truly just a torrential downpour. LOVE IT. Sparty came into the Big House to play the role of Big Brother and defeated Big Blue on a dreary Saturday night in Ann Arbor. And for that: they climb into the TOP 20.
Oh and by the way, Michigan State’s record since Mike Hart’s infamous ‘Big Brother’ jab: 8-2. Eight and two. EIGHT and 2. OOF. Mike D’antonio said it was going to be a fun bus ride home. I get that, but if I were them I’d bundle up and catch some Zzzz’s after a well fought win in the cold rain. Although, if it was anything like the locker room after..I’m sure it was a fun 59 minute trip north. #coachesdancing is alive as ever

19. NC State
Okay, okay. NC State was technically ranked 24th. But NC State looked really formidable on both sides of the ball. Their defense was able to limit Lamar Jackson, who is getting no help from his playmakers. This could be an ongoing problem for Louisville. Besides NC State’s garbage uniforms, where they decided to take a rough draft version of Louisville’s alternate jerseys, they looked complete. Ryan Finley looked really good…which begs the question. Is NC State QBU?
Trivia Time: How many NC State quarterbacks are starting in the NFL during Week 5?
Answer: 3. Russell Wilson**, Philip Rivers, and Jacoby Brissett. (Bonus points if you said Mike Glennon going back to the first four weeks of the season)

18. UCF
UCF continues to be the hipster USF (answer who would win in a fight a knight or a bull in comments below). They have looked more impressive and have taken full control of every game they’ve played this year. Saturday was no different in the Queen City. No not Charlotte. No not Buffalo. Shit how many cities were vying for the Queen’s attention? Cincy didn’t play great and is making their Big12 bid look laughable. You have to think Nebraska is looking hard at Scott Frost. I’m talking driving by his house late at night. I’m talking the “you up” 2am texts. #CoachingCarouselWatch #alumnigoesbackandcoacheswatch

17. Notre Dame
Shake down the thunder from the sky. Notre Dame’s best win this week was perhaps beating Michigan State. They got the transitive win over the Wolverines, and their win vs. Sparty is looking better and better. Not only that, but the stock of a 1 point loss to Georgia has also skyrocketed. Notre Dame shillelagh-wacked the Tar Heels en route to a 33-10 win. Notre Dame keeps proving they can properly dispose of the poop opponents by leaning on a HELLUVA ground game. My only concern is when teams start stacking that box, can a fresh-off-injury Wimbush beat ya with the pass? Who knows!?!

16. Michigan
Whale, whale, whale…what do we have here? Look Michigan fans – expectations were around 9-3, 10-2 going into the season – and this was the first step in coming back down to earth. I’m a Clemson fan, I’m sure reality will check in soon too (but so far we’ve looked pretttttty, pretty good.) This is normal Big Blue. I’m sorry it had to happen in heartbreaking fashion, but you all will recover…it just might not be a recovery up to your standards until 2018. Until then, you have a nice bounce back Pedialyte of a game to recover from the letdown hangover, but you better chug quick. Penn State in two weeks, everyone has their eye on that one.

15. Virginia Tech
I’ll keep it simple here Hokies: you had a big opportunity for a let down game after getting swept under the rug at home last week, but you came through. People around the country are taking notice of Josh Jackson. The Hokies handled BC appropriately. With the meat of the Coastal ahead of them, we all have to be looking at November 4th @ Miami, which will more than likely decide the division.

14. USC
Not much to see here. Trojans got to work and finished off a team they have come to expect beating. Didn’t beat the spread (screw you guys), but Darnold looked back to normal. This may have been the medication USC needed to get their confidence ready for Notre Dame in two weeks.
And USC fans, hey! yeah, you! you with the really good looks and SoCal vibes and beaches and good grades in high school, yeah you!…you still have a good team – go to your games!

13. Oklahoma State
~on Bye~

12. Auburn
~on Bye~ ….wait no they played the Rebels (basically the same thing).
Auburn keeps rolling. What else is new. Keep an eye on those teams that lost early in the season, but have been dominating conference play. If the SEC was broken into tiers and Bama was Tier1, Auburn is comfortably in Tier2 with Georgia. Obviously they don’t look as threatening as Georgia, but wow, they are certainly getting a rhythm. The SEC is looking top heavy and might be secretly garbage? With that being said, the Tigers have been doing their job and doing it well. Next week will be interesting with an LSU team that shook some negativity off.

11. Ohio State
Growing up in Maryland, they was never really anything to pay attention to football-wise. Terps fans, you have plenty to be excited for and their promise under DJ Durkin is still there. HOWEVA *(Stephen A. Smith voice)*, it is tough when you are on your 58th QB and you have to play a Buckeye team on a mission to come back from their early loss. The Buckeyes looked dominant here and have been on a quiet warpath since the Sooner game.

10. Oklahoma
The Sooners had a rough day. Wow. 30.5 point favorites and you lose at home to an MLB/QB and the Dukes of Lazard? The ‘Clones did their thing and embarrassed the Sooners. If you had sharp ears you may have overheard a “daddy” comment (dig at Baker’s comments towards Baylor ) and the more obvious dig at Baker, was the clear Iowa flag plant at midfield. Whatta wacky game. This game was why we love the Big 12, and why we love college football.  Sooners – you have Texas next. And they just looked somewhat impressive vs. Kansas State. Figure it out quick.

9. Miami
This is why CFB needs a version of the RedZone. Lots of games got whacky late and this was extra special. Doak couldn’t contain the Hurricane magic. And how throwback “U” was it. Couple of personal fouls, couple celebrations, and some magic connections from their QB1. The chain was out

The Noles looked shaky, but somehow they were in the lead at the end. The ‘Canes drove down the field quick with seconds to go, and showed flashes of Michael Crabtree with the beautiful back-shoulder 360 touchdown that sent them to victory. After soooo so many close games blown at the end, it was nice to see Miami get one. Weird to think the Seminoles could easily be 0-4.

8. Wisconsin
The Badgers put on the slowroaster for this one. Went out, enjoyed their day, came home to a nicely cooked dinner. The ground game was punishing, and while the Cornhuskers held their own, it was not enough. The Badgers will have a cake walk the rest of the way and they look good as ever. Something to keep your eye on so they don’t sneak up on ya.

7. Washington
To my Washington fans, this is not a dig. This is not an East Coast bias. It’s just that Wazzu has the more impressive win so far. You have given me no reason to doubt you, but there are some teams that look sexier. You’re the team that she told you not to worry about — and that team doesn’t deserve #Top6 just yet. Stay tuned.

6. Washington State
A question was posed recently…what will be more interesting: The Iron Bowl or the Apple Cup? (You tell me and sound off in the comments). For now, this is a FUN team. Leach is a meme coach, a pioneer, a hustler, a soundbite machine, and oh yeah…their quarterback is pretty good too. Talk about #coachesoutshiningtheirQB akin to Mason Rudolph and Mike Gundy. Luke ain’t nothing to Falk with and you should be staying up late to watch this kid. Wazzu rolled through a secretly decent Oregon this week. Helped that Oregon was pretty banged up.

5. TCU
Win against a higher ranked opponent? Check. Get Gameday on campus? Check. Beat a conference foe in a tight game? Check. TCU continues to look impressive, and although WVU held their own and did it to themselves Saturday…it took solid play from Kenny Hill, as he scored 3 different ways in a big home W for the Horned Frogs.

4. Georgia
I attribute this win to the David Attenborough hype video. What else can be said about this Kirby Smart team?  When they got rid of the status quo and many fingers pointed to them being too spoiled with Richt, it seems Kirby has actually executed his plan. Or at least has begun. Their defense has looked dominant. Much of their remaining schedule is attractive too. Anything can happen in Jacksonville, but the drunk and rowdy down in Athens have a lot to smile about these days.

3. Penn State
Stop Saquon they said…it’ll make them one dimensional they said. Welp. They tried. And for the better half of the game they did. But the man still made plays and McSorley did what he had to do. In a very Big10-esque game, Northwestern showed their might, but they were sorely outmatched. Onto the next. The Nittany Lions are looking better and better on D, and with that offense – look out.

2. Clemson
The Tigers cruised to a W against Wake Forest, but not before losing Kelly Bryant to an ankle sprain. Time will tell what will happen there, but the Tigers do not have to fret. While Zerrick Cooper looked like a rookie, Hunter Johnson shined in moments. With the depth the Tigers have at QB, the run game continuing to shine, and that defense giving up single digit touchdowns on the year…they’ll be just fine down in Clemson.

1. Alabama
Last two weeks, I wouldn’t have needed to say anything, but it was refreshing to see Alabama actually look human. The Aggies had a big home crowd and a defense that rattled the Tide at times. See what had happened though was Alabama never really lost control of the game. It was never in doubt. The score may make it look otherwise, and the Aggies gave them their best test to date, but I mean c’mon. It’s gonna be hard to stop the Tide.

Leave a Reply