College football conference rankings, Week 4: FIU is the ultimate anchor

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

This is not a recording: The Pac-12 had a fantastic week and Conference USA has a terrible one. Meanwhile, for the first time this year, AAC teams had a week to be proud of.

Reminder: We're not talking about which conference is the best. We're talking about which conference had the best weekend.

1. Pac-12

It's conceivable that we end the regular season with a battle between an unbeaten Oregon/Stanford and an unbeaten Ohio State politicking for the other spot in the BCS Championship. An unbeaten Pac-12 champion will only benefit from weeks when UCLA, Washington, and Washington State all post blowout wins while Utah and USC win non-conference games against respectable teams. Yet again, the Pac-12 shows itself to be the nation's second-best conference by having the best week.

2. ACC

The ACC had another week in which the two most important things for a conference hoping to put its champion into the BCS title game happened: The teams at the top won and the middle avoided embarrassment. Clemson and Florida State won, while Miami, Syracuse, and Virginia also posted blowouts. Maryland beating down West Virginia made the top of the Atlantic Division 10-0 this year.

3. Big Ten

Ohio State, Wisconsin, Northwestern, and Nebraska won comfortably. However, Michigan State's offense disappeared yet again in a loss to Notre Dame and Michigan needed a furious rally late to beat lowly UConn.

4. AAC

For the first week this year, the AAC actually acquitted itself well. It helps when USF is off. Louisville dominated FIU, while Rutgers rallied to beat Arkansas, and Houston beat Rice to improve to 3-0. Even Memphis got in on the act with a win over Arkansas State.

5. Big 12

Not many games in the Big 12 this week, but it's here in the middle because it's good that Baylor is terrifyingly good on offense and Texas ended its losing streak to Kansas State and Kansas squeezed out a victory over Louisiana Tech. West Virginia, however, had its worst game in a decade, being blown out by Maryland 37-0 and having little reason to hope things will get better any time soon.

6. SEC

Alabama, Georgia, and Vanderbilt allowed inferior opponents to hang around into the second half while Tennessee revealed it still has no quarterback. Then, on the opening series of the game, Florida lost Jeff Driskel for the season. To top things off, Arkansas blew a 24-7 third quarter lead to Rutgers.

7. Mountain West

You could make the case that the Mountain West should be higher since Fresno State, having beaten Boise State, has a legitimate shot to be a BCS-buster should it run the table. But in the same week Fresno State won, Utah State lost at USC, San Jose State was blown out by Minnesota, and San Diego State blew a fourth quarter lead over Oregon State.

8. MAC

The good news is the top of the conference keeps winning. The bad news is, pretty much nobody else is. It's not good when Northern Illinois, hoping to be a BCS-buster again in 2013, barely escapes Eastern Illinois.

9. Sun Belt

The Fun Belt of 2012 is officially dead. Georgia State lost to another FCS team, Baylor scored 70 and probably could've scored 100 on ULM, and Arkansas State, one of the more respectable programs in the Sun Belt the past few season, was dominated by Memphis.

10. Conference USA

In addition to FIU losing 72-0 and having some form of a running clock implemented to get the game over with, Louisiana Tech lost to Kansas, Marshall blew an upset bid to Virginia Tech, Rice lost to Houston, and Tulane was blown out by Syracuse.

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