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Ohio State Remains No. 1; 10 SEC Football Teams Make AP Top 25

 

Ohio State Remains No. 1; 10 SEC Football Teams Make AP Top 25

By Burt Carey

Not many college football fans put a lot of stock into preseason or, for that matter, early-season polls. So no one was surprised when the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls came out for week No. 2 with the Ohio State Buckeyes atop both.

Ohio State, college, football, Buckeyes, Top 25

What caught the attention of many fans is that 10 of the 14 teams in the Southeastern Conference are ranked in the AP Top 25 this week. (Not so the Coaches Poll, which favored just nine SEC teams in its Top 25 list.) The conference had a strong first week, going 12-1.

Ohio State avenged the lone loss of its national championship season last year by knocking off Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, 42-24. About the only remarkable part of this first game of the season was who was ultimately named the starting quarterback.

Head coach Urban Meyer kept secret who the starting quarterback would be right up until it was time for the offense to take the field. In fact, he kept the secret so well that the man who got the nod, Cardale Jones, didn’t know.

“I was taking a couple steps to the sideline, and (coach) was like, ‘No, you’re in,'” Jones recalled afterward. “When you found out, I found out.”

Jones led the Buckeyes with 9-for-18 passing for 186 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He added another 99 yards on the ground, including a rushing TD. He started ahead of J.T. Barrett, the Big Ten quarterback and freshman of the year in 2014, whose broken ankle in week No. 12 last season knocked him out before the national title game. Before the injury, Barrett had set a school record with 3,772 yards and he led the Big Ten with 45 touchdowns.

Ohio State was a unanimous No. 1 pick for the AP poll, and it received all but one vote in the Coaches Poll. The other went to No. 2 Alabama, which took out the No. 18 Wisconsin Badgers, 35-17, to move past TCU into the No. 2 spot in both polls. With the loss, Wisconsin disappeared from the AP poll and dropped to No. 24 in the Coaches poll.

The SEC had eight teams in the preseason AP poll, then added Texas A&M and Mississippi State this week. The Aggies, unranked in the preseason AP poll, jumped to No. 16 by knocking off a highly touted Arizona State squad that was ranked No. 16. The Sun Devils dropped completely out of both polls. The coaches ranked Texas A&M at No. 19. Mississippi State moved into the AP Top 25 at No. 25 with a 34-16 win over the Southern Miss Golden Eagles. The Bulldogs will be tested for real this week when they host No. 14 LSU at Davis Wade Stadium.

Rounding out the SEC contingent, are No. 6 Auburn, No. 10 Georgia, No. 14 LSU, No. 17 Ole Miss, No. 18 Arkansas, No. 20 Missouri and No. 23 Tennessee.

Here’s how the rest of the Top 25 are ranked in the AP and Coaches polls for week No. 2:

AP                                                                                          Coaches

  1. Ohio State (61 No. 1 votes)                   Ohio State (63 No. 1 votes)
  2. Alabama                                                       Alabama (1 vote)
  3. TCU                                                                         TCU
  4. Baylor                                                                         Baylor
  5. Michigan State                                                       Oregon
  6. Auburn                                                                         Michigan State
  7. Oregon                                                                         Auburn
  8. USC                                                                         Florida State
  9. Notre Dame                                                       Georgia
  10. Georgia                                                                         USC
  11. Florida State                                                       Notre Dame
  12. Clemson                                                       Clemson
  13. UCLA                                                                         UCLA
  14. LSU                                                                         Ole Miss
  15. Georgia Tech                                                       LSU
  16. Texas A&M                                                       Georgia Tech
  17. Ole Miss                                                       Oklahoma
  18. Arkansas                                                       Arkansas
  19. Oklahoma                                                       Texas A&M
  20. Boise State                                                       Arizona
  21. Missouri                                                       Missouri
  22. Arizona                                                                         Boise State
  23. Tennessee                                                       Tennessee
  24. Utah                                                                         Wisconsin
  25. Mississippi State                                     Utah
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