Here's how my Associated Press top 25 ballot looked this morning:
2. Ohio State
8. Florida State
15. Texas A&M
17. South Carolina
19. Northern Illinois
20. Texas Tech
21. Fresno State
22. Virginia Tech
24. Notre Dame
Out: Ole Miss, Arizona State.In: Notre Dame, Auburn.
- There was a lot of carnage near the bottom of my ballot, with teams 21-23 all losing. But 19 of the 20 teams in the top 20 were victorious. Washington did not drop at all on my ballot after losing by three at Stanford, and on a disputed call.
- I had some trouble deciding who to put back in the poll. Notre Dame has two losses, but they're both to ranked, unbeaten teams (Oklahoma and Michigan), and it got a good win over Arizona State. I didn't want to put Oklahoma State back in (a four-point win over Kansas State doesn't do it yet). No other candidates jumped out. So it came down to Missouri or Auburn, and I went with Auburn because its only loss is to LSU, and its best win (vs. Ole Miss on Saturday) is more impressive than Missouri's (at Vanderbilt.)
- In the top five, I flipped Clemson over Stanford. Really, the top five (with the exception of Alabama) can go in any order. But at this point Clemson deserves a better spot because it's demolishing opponents and owns a better quality win than Stanford.
- Florida State also moves up two spots, vaulting two other unbeaten teams because ... wow, Jameis Winston. You and the Seminoles are pretty good.
- Then I did the same for Baylor, for the same reason. The Bears are quite good.