December 15, 2017

The Red Raiders Climb All Over the Mountaineers as WVU Drops in Top 16

In last week’s Leatherheads College Football Top 16, three of our top five teams lost to shake-up the poll.  In this week’s poll, two of the top five lost.  The big surprise was West Virginia’s loss to Texas Tech.  It was not just a loss but a blowout!  The Red Raiders improved to 5-1 by beating the Mountaineers by the score of 49-14.  One QB passed for 499 yards and 6 TDs in the game and that QB’s name was not Geno.  Seth Doege played outstanding while Geno Smith’s Heisman run hit a speed bump.  In my estimation, Smith is still by far the Heisman choice to this point, but West Virgina will need to return to their winning ways.  Next up is Kansas State who is our #3 ranked team after Alabama and Oregon.  West Virginia dropped from #5 to #15 this week.

The other team in our top five to lose was South Carolina.  The Gamecocks lost a close one against LSU, 23-21.  LSU found some offensive against what is usually a tough South Carolina defense.  Jeremy Hill led the way with 124 yards rushing with two touchdowns.  South Carolina dropped from #3 to #9 as LSU slightly rose in the poll from tied for ninth to eighth.

Notre Dame rose one spot to #5 with their narrow victory over Stanford.  The Fighting Irish stopped the Cardinal on the goal line to end the game in overtime, staying undefeated at 6-0.  Stanford fell out of the Top 16 a few weeks back and only received one 16th place vote this week.

One team that caught my attention that I have been neglecting to cast a vote for in recent weeks is the Oklahoma Sooners.  They took apart Texas 63-21.  Texas was a team that I thought more highly of earlier in the season.  After back-to-back losses, the Longhorns are now out of the poll and didn’t receive a single vote from our pollsters.  The Sooners, on the other hand, have started to creep back up in the poll.  They rose three spots to #11.  In our first poll of the season, Oklahoma was ranked #5 but their loss to Kansas State sank them in the polls which included one week out of our rankings.  The week prior to beating Texas, the Sooners defeated Texas Tech 41-20.  Next up is Kansas and then a matchup with Notre Dame.

This week’s poll also includes two undefeated teams making their debut in the Top 16, Mississippi State and Louisville.  Both teams are 6-0 and have received support the last three weeks from some of our pollsters.  In two weeks, the Bulldogs play at Alabama.  If they don’t lose to Middle Tennessee this weekend, the chances are the Bulldogs will no longer be undefeated after their battle with the Crimson Tide.  If they manage to upset our current #1 team, they will then play Texas A&M and LSU.  The Louisville Cardinals have some tough games ahead of them in the Big East, but an undefeated season is not out of the question.  However, two other Big East teams and upcoming opponents are also undefeated at this time.  Cincinnati is 5-0 and Rutgers is 6-0.  Next up for Louisville is South Florida.

Rank Team Record Points Last Week
   1 Alabama (12)    6-0   192        1
   2 Oregon    6-0   180        2
   3 Kansas State    6-0   159        4
   4 Florida    6-0   151        7
   5 Notre Dame    6-0   146        6
   6 Ohio State    7-0   113        8
   7 Oregon State    5-0   112        9 (Tie)
   8 LSU    6-1   110        9 (Tie)
   9 South Carolina    6-1    88        3
 10 USC    5-1    71      11
 11 Oklahoma    4-1    70      14
 12 Florida State    6-1    68      12
 13 Mississippi State    6-0    39      NR
 14 Louisville    6-0    32      NR
 15 West Virginia    5-1    31        5
 16 Georgia    5-1    26      15

Others receiving votes
: Rutgers – 22, Clemson – 11, Texas A&M – 5, Cincinnati – 4, Northwestern – 1, Stanford – 1.

Participating voters: David Boyce, Ronnie Foreman, Terry Keshner, Bob Lazzari, Dan McCloskey, Andrew McKillop, Tex Noel, Pete Sonski, Bob Swick, Brandon Williams, Joe Williams, Tony Williams.


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