AP Top 25: Stanford and Washington stay in top 10, Utah jumps into top 20
The Pac-12 held steady at three ranked teams in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll, with Stanford and Washington staying in the top 10 at No. 7 and No. 10, respectively, and Utah climbing up to No. 18. The SEC leads the way with seven ranked teams, while the Big Ten puts five teams in, the ACC has four, the Big 12 has three, the Mountain West supplies two and the American places one.
Welcome to road conference football, Ryan Burns. After looking largely ineffective for the first 58 minutes in the Rose Bowl, the Stanford signal caller engineered a game-winning 70-yard drive that culminated in an end zone fade to JJ Arcega-Whiteside with 24 seconds remaining to help lift Stanford to a 22-13 win at UCLA for the team’s ninth-straight win over the Bruins. The win keeps Stanford squarely in the way-too-early College Football Playoff conversation and also holds the 3-0 Cardinal at No. 7 in the AP poll for the fourth consecutive week. The road does not get any easier, however, as David Shaw and Friends must now travel to Seattle on a short week to face top-10 Washington.
The Dawgs looked good in their non-conference games, but the problem was they didn’t really play anybody of note. Going on the road for their first Pac-12 game and first true test of the season, how would the Huskies respond? Well enough to the get the win, and that’s all you need to do, as Washington outlasted Arizona 35-28 in overtime. Lavon Coleman was unreal, exploding for 181 yards on only 11 carries and a 55-yard touchdown run, while Jake Browning was his usual efficient self and threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Dante Pettis in OT. Despite the road win, the Huskies dropped one spot to No. 10, as Wisconsin’s thorough smashing of Michigan State and Texas A&M's thrashing of Arkansas were just too much to overlook for the pollsters. Now we know the Dawgs can beat a team that has a good shot of making a bowl game, but can they beat the defending Pac-12 champs? We’ll find out soon enough.
I guess you can call him Kyle “Riverboat” Whittingham after Friday night, as the Utes’ head coach went for it fourth down consistently all game against USC and didn’t back down when it mattered most, allowing Troy “The Truth” Williams to find the reliable Tim Patrick in the end zone with 16 seconds left to push Utah to 4-0 with a come-from-behind 31-27 win over USC. Being down 14 in the third quarter and 10 in the fourth didn’t faze Whittingham or Williams, a SoCal kid who grew up watching SC and dreaming of one day playing for or against the Trojans. The win, combined with plenty of mid-top-25 turmoil, allowed the Utes to skip up six spots to No. 18. Up next for the Utes is a Saturday afternoon affair in Berkeley against a Cal team that has already taken down one ranked foe in Texas, so it will be anything but a gimme for Utah.
Three other Pac-12 teams received votes -- Arizona State is the de-facto No. 26 team in the AP nation, as its 135 voting points was seven behind Georgia's 142 for No. 25. Additionally, Colorado received 33 voting points after improving to 3-1 with a win at Oregon and UCLA nabbed 22 after falling to 2-2.
Here’s the AP Top 25 in full (first-place votes in parentheses):
- Alabama (50)
- Ohio State (4)
- Louisville (6)
- Michigan (1)
- Texas A&M
- Florida State
- Ole Miss
- Michigan State
- San Diego State
- Boise State