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The TCR Top 40: This Is A Strange Top 10

The Champaign Room Top 40 thinks Top 25 polls are for wimps.

So we had our first Saturday of the season where shit got weird, with seven ranked teams losing. It will not be the last time it happens this season, though you will see a lot of time spent on television and radio in the coming months concerning "WHAT IF THERE ARE FOUR UNDEFEATED TEAMS!? WHO PLAYS FOR THE TITLE!?"

That happens every year and then, magically, a bunch of teams that are NEVER GOING TO LOSE do just that. It's like we're dealing with a sport played by college kids or something.

Anyway, as you'd expect, the results of the weekend had a big impact on the TCR Top 40, including a top 10 that nobody would have predicted once the season started. So let's get to it.

1. Alabama

Alabama hangs on to the top spot this week after beating up on Kentucky, but it's lead over the team behind it is as narrow as it has been all season. Though it doesn't really matter which team is ranked where. If Alabama and Oregon win out there's no team that's going to pass them.

2. Oregon

Going on the road to beat Washington isn't enough to get Oregon to the top spot, but as I mentioned up there, it's as close as ever. Honestly, if this poll were based on opinion I'm not sure which way I'd go at this point. They're both kinda good, you know?

3. Clemson

Somebody got caught looking ahead this week, huh? It's funny because since this game was being played at the same time as Missouri-Georgia and Texas-Oklahoma I didn't even hear about Clemson trailing 7-3 at halftime until halftime. Nobody was talking about it because nobody was watching. They all just assumed Clemson was going to kill Boston College.

4. Florida State

Florida State took the week off to prepare for this week's game against Clemson. So, yeah, either Florida State is going to move up to third next week or it's going to fall out of the Top Ten.


Could this be UCLA's last week in the top 10? Their next two games are on the road against Stanford and Oregon, and man I did not know the Pac-12's schedule maker guy was a USC grad.

6. Ohio State

Ohio State is in that perfect position of knowing that it can move up  just because the teams in front of it are going to start losing. Of course, that's assuming Ohio State keeps winning,  but while I'm fully aware that this Ohio State team is beatable, I'm just not sure what Big Ten team is capable of doing it.

7. Missouri

Enjoy it while it lasts, Mizzou! Because something tells me that things are going to get a whole lot more difficult now that James Franklin is essentially done for the season. But, honestly, you've already won more games this year than last. Everything from this point is just icing.

8. Baylor

So maybe the Baylor offense isn't so unstoppable? The Bears really didn't play all that well this week but get to move up a couple spots because of teams ahead of them losing.

9. Louisville

I've seen a lot of Louisville fans on Twitter getting annoyed with people for saying Teddy Bridgewater's Heisman hopes and Louisville's national title hopes died on Thursday night. I certainly understand why they'd be annoyed, but that doesn't make it any less true. When people have doubts about  your schedule coming in to the season you need to blow them away when they finally get a chance to see you. And Louisville didn't do that. And, seriously, you can mention beating Florida in the Sugar Bowl last year all you want, but as impressive as it was, it's got nothing to do with this season.

10. Miami

I made so many Miami fans mad on Sunday morning when I said that if Miami deserves to be in the top 10, then Missouri should be there too. Of course Miami fans took that as me saying "MIAMI SUCKS, MISSOURI IS BETTER" because, and I don't know if you know this or not, but fans are stupid.

11. LSU

12. Texas Tech

13. Stanford

My colleague at CBSSports had a very good comparison for this Stanford team this year. They're basically the LSU teams we're used to seeing. The defense and special teams are so good that they're going to win most of their games, but the offense is a science experiment capable of blowing up in your face.

14. Texas A&M

15. South Carolina

16. Northern Illinois

If I were doing this based on opinion there's no way Northern Illinois would be ranked this high, but in this formula the fact it still hasn't lost puts it up here. Even if the Huskies have played the 109th toughest schedule in the country....while winning by an average of 11.5 points per game. Or 7.6 points per game if you don't include the 31-point win over Purdue.

17. Oklahoma

18. Michigan

I know Michigan hasn't looked very good, but the amount of people who I've seen pretend it's a disgrace that a 5-1 team whose only loss was a four-overtime loss on the road is ranked anywhere is downright comical.

19. Fresno State

20. Houston

21. Nebraska

22. Michigan State

So look who has found an offense and oh god run for your lives. Seriously, think about how mockable Nebraska and Michigan State were at the beginning of the season. And now they're basically the two best teams in the Legends Division.

23. Georgia

Georgia had been the highest-ranked one-loss team all season long and now it gets to be the highest-ranked two-loss team.

24. Auburn

25. Maryland

26. Oklahoma State

27. Oregon State

That Eastern Washington loss is killing this team, but believe me when I tell you that this team is pretty damn good. The Sean Mannion-Brandin Cooks connection is lethal.

28. Virginia Tech

29. UCF

30. Florida

31. Ball State

32. Wisconsin

Where would the Badgers be if Pac-12 officials weren't Pac-12 officials?

33. Washington

I think this is too low, but this formula punishes losses.

34. Arizona State

35. Notre Dame

36. BYU

37. Texas

38. Utah

39. East Carolina

40. Northwestern

So is anybody going to mention how this team just quit on Saturday? Felt like I was watching the Illini last season.

Just Outside: Bowling Green, Penn State, Pitt, Marshall, USC

And Illinois: The bye week sees the Illini move from 62nd to....62nd.

THE BOTTOM TEN (from worst to just terrible)

1. New Mexico State

2. Georgia State

3. Western Michigan

4. Miami (Ohio)

5. Temple

6. UConn

7. Southern Miss

8. Eastern Michigan

9. Idaho

10. Hawaii

Last week's rankings can be found here.

Follow The Champaign Room on Twitter at @Champaign_Room and Like us on Facebook. You can follow Tom Fornelli on Twitter at @TomFornelli.