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Marcel’s Week 9 Rankings: ‘Noles Escape Irish, Bulldogs Still No.1


 

(October 17, 2014 - Source: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images North America)
(October 17, 2014 – Source: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images North America)

With week nine of the college football season in the books, here are my NCAAF rankings.

  1. Mississippi State (6-0) – Sticking with the Bulldogs at No. 1. This spot is theirs to lose; however, in the SEC West, there will be plenty of opportunities to do just that.
  1. Florida State (7-0) – The Noles didn’t dominate Notre Dame enough to bump them back into the top spot. With a stereotypically easy ACC schedule remaining, and Florida waiting at the end of the season, FSU is a virtual lock for the playoffs.
  1. Ole Miss (7-0) – The Rebels overcame a slow start and really took it to an overmatched Tennessee team. Ole Miss is immovable on defense, and it will continue to be a top program as long as Bo Wallace keeps taking care of the ball.
  1. Alabama (6-1) – 59-0. The Tide are still rolling as Texas A&M didn’t even put up a fight in Tuscaloosa. They’re yet to play Miss St and Auburn, but both games are at home – where Bama hasn’t lost since November 10, 2012.
  1. Auburn (5-1) – Not to be outdone by their in-state rivals, the Tigers are still in the thick of the playoff hunt. Auburn is one of the better teams in the nation, but this is a tragic case of one loss potentially derailing a season.
  1. Oregon (6-1) – The Ducks have turned things around in recent weeks, and are once again the clear favorite to win the Pac-12. With No.19 Utah as their only remaining ranked opponent, if the Ducks don’t win out, it’ll be a shock.
  1. Notre Dame (6-1) – An unfortunate (but correct) pass interference call ruined a heroic effort by Everett Golson. Wins against Arizona State and USC could make up for the Irish’s blemish.
  1. Georgia (6-1) – The Bulldogs haven’t skipped a beat since Todd Gurley’s suspension. Nick Chubb is a stud, and Georgia should handily win the SEC East.
  1. Michigan State (6-1) – The main issue with the Spartans is their soft B1G schedule. Even a win in their showdown with Ohio State won’t be enough to put them in the playoff hunt, barring losses from every team above them.
  1. TCU (5-1) – The Horned Frogs made up for a disappointing loss to Baylor with a statement win against Oklahoma State. Everyone needs to have TCU’s Nov. 8 matchup with Kansas State circled.
  1. Kansas State (5-1) – An impressive win in Norman has the Wildcats on the cusp of the top-10. If not for an early-season loss against Auburn, K-State would be a dark horse playoff candidate.
  1. Ohio State (5-1) – The Buckeyes continue to prove their lone loss was a fluke. Despite its impressive run, OSU’s playoff hopes are shot with a loss and a B1G schedule.
  1. Arizona State (5-1) – Mike Bercovici has created a true QB controversy in Tempe, as he’s led the Sun Devils right back into the hunt for a Pac-12 title. Their looming duel with Notre Dame gets more interesting with each passing week.
  1. Baylor (6-1) – An ugly loss (215 penalty yards) to West Virginia boots the Bears out of playoff contention. They’re a different team on the road, but play four of their remaining five games in Waco.
  1. Arizona (5-1) – The Wildcats stay put following their bye week, but will have to be careful this weekend against an explosive Washington State offense.
  1. East Carolina (5-1) – The Pirates move up two spots after their bye week. They don’t have an impressive opponent remaining on their schedule, but they keep winning, and that’s about all you can ask of them.
  1. Nebraska (6-1) – Heisman candidate, Ameer Abdullah, is still the only thing keeping this Cornhusker team afloat. They’re very much alive in the B1G title chase, and the West division looks like one of the weakest in the nation.
  1. Oklahoma (5-2) – A bad loss at home firmly puts the Sooners out of playoff contention. Two conference losses will make it tough for them to make a run at the Big-12 title, and Sooner fans have to see this season as a disappointment.
  1. Utah (5-1) – The Utes will have to prove their worth over the next three weeks, as they play USC, ASU, and Oregon consecutively.
  1. USC (5-2) – Cody Kessler became a true starter this season, and USC is starting to get its season back in gear. Unfortunately, it may be too late after two early losses.
  1. UCLA (5-2) – Outside of a blowout win at Arizona State, the Bruins haven’t looked anything like the playoff team some projected them to be. Their upcoming game against Colorado might be exactly what they need at this point.
  1. Clemson (5-2) – The Tigers squeaked by a tough Boston College team, but are still a couple (unlikely) FSU losses away from contending for an ACC title.
  1. Marshall (7-0) – Shoutout to the state of West Virginia for clawing its way into the Top-25 this week. We’ll have to wait until bowl season to see how good Marshall truly is, but it’s almost a lock to go undefeated in the regular season.
  1. West Virginia (5-2) – The Mountaineers have been knocking on the door since Week 1, and finally got the program’s first marquee win in years. WVU plays its toughest remaining games at home (TCU, K-State) and could wind up winning a Big-12 title if it stays focused.
  1. LSU (6-2) – The Tigers humiliated Kentucky last week, but don’t get too used to seeing them in the Top-25. Their next two games are against Ole Miss and Alabama.

Just Missed the Cut:

Duke (6-1), Minnesota (6-1), Oklahoma State (5-2)

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