In this week's AP and Coaches Polls, Baylor moves ahead of fellow Big 12 competitor TCU for the No. 2 ranking in the country. As it's been all season, Ohio State remains the top-ranked team. But in an advanced-stats ranking and in a collection of dozens of ratings, the Buckeyes aren't all that close.
For some teams near the top of the rankings, Week 6 was about survival. Ohio State won by three touchdowns but struggled plenty with Maryland. Michigan State let Rutgers play a dangerously competitive game before the Scarlet Knights literally spiked the ball on fourth down. TCU had to push its "Activate Trevone Boykin" button to avoid a loss to Kansas State. Utah needed a late stand to seal a win against Cal in a thriller.
For others, the weekend was about revival. Michigan was already clearly good, but the Wolverines formally announced themselves as one of the country's best by pummeling Northwestern. Texas won't show up in many rankings this week, but the Longhorns' upset over Oklahoma was nonetheless impressive. And Tennessee, which looked dead in the water a week ago, beat Georgia to set up a possible turning point.
|1||Ohio State (27)||Ohio State (47)||Utah||Clemson|
|2||Baylor (13)||Baylor (8)||TCU||Alabama|
|3||TCU (3)||TCU (5)||Florida||Michigan|
|4||Utah (16)||Michigan State (1)||Clemson||Florida State|
|5||Clemson (1)||LSU (1)||Michigan||Florida|
|7||Michigan State||Utah (1)||Texas A&M||Notre Dame|
|8||Florida State||Florida State||Baylor||West Virginia|
|9||Texas A&M (1)||Alabama||Alabama||Oklahoma|
|10||Alabama||Texas A&M||Notre Dame||Stanford|
|12||Michigan||Ole Miss||Oklahoma State||Northwestern|
|13||Ole Miss||Notre Dame||Stanford||Utah|
|14||Notre Dame||Michigan||Florida State||Duke|
|15||Stanford||Oklahoma State||Iowa||Texas A&M|
|16||Oklahoma State||Stanford||Ole Miss||Ole Miss|
|20||Northwestern||Boise State||Boise State||Arkansas|
|Composite ranking||Change||Average ranking|
The four rankings used here
The Associated Press Top 25: The longest-running and best-respected human poll. Didn't have any official bearing on the latter years of the BCS, and won't have any official bearing on the Playoff. Expect it to set the course for the committee, however, as most outlets (including SB Nation) will use the AP's rankings as the standard until the committee takes over in November. Usually comes out on Sundays about 2 p.m. ET.
The USA Today Coaches Poll: Formerly part of the BCS, and now just a poll. It tends to be more conservative than the AP's. Though polling athletic departments in order to rank other athletic departments is dubious, we still want multiple human polls in here, and this is the other big one. Releases early Sunday afternoons.
The Massey computer composite: A collection of ... every rating out there, which will be included as soon as it is updated. By including it here, we're giving extra weight to the two human polls, since they're already two of the dozens of ratings included in the Massey. It changes over the course of the week as more rankings arrive.
Bill Connelly's S&P+ ratings: Connelly's efficiency- and explosiveness-based metric parses each team's performance and adjusts it for strength of opposition. These ratings ultimately become part of each FBS team's advanced statistical profile. They're entirely computer-generated and don't signal an agenda against anybody's favorite team.
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SB Nation presents: No one wants to face Michigan