The Resurgent’s team of Philip Swicegood, Josh Hammer, and Dave Scharoun will be releasing its own NCAA football poll throughout the season, along with running commentary about each week’s highlights.
Here are our rankings and preview for Week 6.
1. Alabama (Last week: def. Kentucky 34-0) (This week: @ no. 16 Arkansas)
The three people who run this weekly college football blog have as their favorite Southeastern Conference teams Tennessee, Ole Miss, and Georgia, respectively. So you can imagine how little collective love we have for the behemoth program from Tuscaloosa. Maybe we can praise Nick Saban for just winning so much every freaking year…but then, would we really be any better than Donald Trump praising Vladimir Putin?
The Tide have a tough SEC West divisional matchup this week at Arkansas. A home win over the Tide would probably amount to the greatest win in the head coaching career of the Razorbacks’ Bret Bielema. Alabama is a 14-point road favorite.
2. Clemson (Last week: def. Louisville 42-36) (This week: def. Boston College 56-10 (Fri., 10/07 game))
Clemson easily had its best win of the season last week, prevailing in an absolute thriller against upstart Louisville. The Cardinals came roaring back from an 18-point halftime deficit, but could not quite complete the job on the road in (the indubitably less famous…you’re welcome, LSU fans) Death Valley. Arguably more importantly, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney remains one of the absolute best dudes in all of college football. And there is pretty much less than zero chance he isn’t a solidly pro-life, pro-federalism, pro-gun conservative. Can Dabo please primary Lindsey Graham in 2020?
The Tigers routed Boston College last night up in Massachusetts.
3. Ohio State (Last week: def. Rutgers 58-0) (This week: v. Indiana)
The Buckeyes have what is probably the most high-octane offense in all of college football at their disposal. We probably should rank them ahead of Clemson, per their AP/Coaches polls consensus, but the Tigers get the position by the narrowest of margins due to their staggeringly awesome win over Louisville and its Heisman Trophy favorite quarterback Lamar Jackson. Ohio State is a 28-point favorite this week against cupcake opponent Indiana.
4. Michigan (Last week: def. Wisconsin 14-7) (This week: @ Rutgers)
Does it get any more quintessentially Big Ten than Michigan’s 14-7 victory last week over Wisconsin? The flagship state programs from two classically Midwestern, Great Lakes-adjoining states. The Big House in Ann Arbor. And really stylistically ugly, hard-to-watch football. With Wisconsin out of the way, Michigan does not face another ranked opponent until archrival Ohio State on November 26. Kudos to head coach Jim Harbaugh for how quickly he has brought the storied Michigan program back to national prominence.
5. Washington (Last week: def. Stanford 44-6) (This week: @ Oregon)
In possibly the most boring “top-ten matchup” in the modern history of NCAA football, the Washington Huskies simply annihilated Stanford last Friday, September 30. All kidding aside, though, it’s probably time to brush aside their granola-eating yuppie fan base and actually take this Huskies team seriously. Quarterback Jake Browning is certainly a legitimate Heisman candidate. Washington has a tricky road matchup this week at tawdry, nouveau riche Oregon. Due solely to the beyond hideous uniforms the Ducks will presumably trot out (thanks, Phil Knight), we’re openly rooting for Washington in this one. The Huskies are a 10-point favorite.
6. Houston (Last week: def. Connecticut 42-14) (This week: @ Navy)
Another week, another poll that features the Houston Cougars as the top-ranked team in the football-mad State of Texas. Cougars quarterback Greg Ward Jr. is another bona fide Heisman contender, and his chances will be buoyed by the fact that Houston does not face another ranked opponent until a looming showdown with Louisville on November 17. The Cougars are a 17-point road favorite this week at Navy.
7. Texas A&M (Last week: def. South Carolina 24-13) (This week: v. no. 9 Tennessee)
ESPN’s “College GameDay” is in College Station, Texas for this Saturday’s top-ten clash between Texas A&M and Tennessee. One of us here had a ticket to this awesome game before unfortunately giving it up due to extenuating circumstances. (Beers on the couch will have to cut it.) The Aggies’ Christian Kirk-Josh Reynolds combination might be the nation’s preeminent wide receiving duo, providing quarterback Trevor Knight with a multitude of aerial options. Kyle Field should be absolutely rocking. The Aggies sit as a 7-point favorite.
8. Louisville (Last week: lost at Clemson 42-36) (This week: Bye)
Louisville fell just short last week of completing a pretty epic road comeback against Clemson in Death Valley. Frankly, the Cardinals may well be the single most fun team to watch in all of college football. And from our perspective, the more attention the football program takes away from Rick Pitino and his perennially polemical Cardinals basketball program, the better.
9. Tennessee (Last week: def. Florida 38-28) (This week: @ no. 7 Texas A&M)
Butch Jones, Josh Dobbs, and the rest of the Tennessee program had Georgia Bulldog nation on something closely akin to collective suicide watch after last Saturday’s jaw-droppingly sublime, stupefyingly-unreal win last week in Athens. Seriously, send Dave Scharoun your regards, people. If you somehow missed it, you can watch the highlights here. Tennessee did not have too much time to celebrate, however, as it travels to the heart of Texas this week for an inter-divisional SEC matchup at Texas A&M. The Volunteers have been nothing if not inconsistent all season, and a win in College Station this week would probably be the thus-far highlight of Butch Jones’ head coaching tenure.
10. Miami (Last week: def. Georgia Tech 35-21) (This week: v. no. 21 Florida State)
Miami is playing Florida State this week. We frankly are not sure that we could conjure up a matchup between two more easily hateable college football programs, even if we tried. That being said, if the game can provide a brief respite from the destruction wrought by Hurricane Matthew, we should all be thankful. Miami is a 3-point favorite over the Seminoles.
11. Baylor (Last week: def. Iowa State 45-42) (This week: Bye)
12. Ole Miss (Last week: def. Memphis 48-28) (This week: Bye)
Despite having two losses, the Rebels rank higher here than every blemished team except for one-loss Louisville. It doesn’t take that much imagination to envision an alternate universe in which the high-powered Rebels do not blow big leads at Florida State and home versus Alabama, and thus rank as a top-three team in the country. But…alas. Reality beckons.
13. Wisconsin (Last week: lost at Michigan 14-7) (This week: Bye)
14. Nebraska (Last week: def. Illinois 31-16) (This week: Bye)
15. North Carolina (Last week: def. Florida State 37-35) (This week: v. no. 25 Virginia Tech)
At least one of us here really, really dislikes the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Without exerting much effort, you can probably figure out who he is. Nonetheless, the Tar
Heels Holes had quite the spectacular win last week, sending a 54-yard field goal through the uprights as time expired to knock off the ‘Noles of Tallahassee. Since the opponent was the “tomahawk chop”-obsessed team, we guess it’s ok. Emphasis on “guess,” though. Ugh. Is 2016 over yet?
16. Arkansas (Last week: def. Alcorn State 52-10) (This week: v. no. 1 Alabama)
Let the record reflect that Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema’s Wikipedia page still says, under the “Personal Life” header, “Arkansas sports radio personality Bo Mattingly debuted a series featuring Bielema entitled[,] ‘Being Bret Bielema’ on February 25, 2016. Although generally well received[,] notable sports writer Dan Schreck of HotTakes.com called the show ‘a back-alley abortion.’” It’s been three weeks and no one has edited it out!
17. Stanford (Last week: lost at Washington 44-6) (This week: v. Washington State)
Stanford got beat last week in an arguably more excessively forceful drubbing than the feds dealt the Weaver family at Ruby Ridge. It was ugly.
18. Florida (Last week: def. Vanderbilt 13-6) (This week: game POSTPONED v. LSU due to Hurricane Matthew)
Y’all, we all hate how the Left attributes every bad weather phenomenon nowadays to
global warming “climate change,” but seriously…don’t be a Hurricane Truther like Matt Drudge, either.
19. Oklahoma (Last week: def. TCU 52-46) (This week: v. Texas @ Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Tex.)
Oklahoma’s two losses this year have come to very good teams: Houston and Ohio State. The Sooners had a quality win over TCU last week in Fort Worth. They return to North Texas this week to face the hated Texas Longhorns in their annual Red River
Rivalry Showdown Shootout game at the Cotton Bowl. Yes, we are still calling it the “Shootout,” which is what this perennial neutral-site matchup used to be called before a bunch of beta-male, kale-sipping, gun-grabbing P.C. liberals at some leading NCAA sponsor decided that a “shootout” sounded too scary.
20. West Virginia (Last week: def. West Virginia 17-16) (This week: Bye)
There is a venerable Internet rumor that Morgantown, West Virginia (population: 29,660) accounts for 1% of Anheuser-Busch’s annual alcohol sales. We have no idea if the rumor is true, but we really hope it is.
21. Florida State (Last week: lost at North Carolina 37-35) (This week: @ no. 10 Miami)
22. Boise State (Last week: def. Utah State 21-20) (This week: def. New Mexico 49-21 (Fri. 10/07))
If Boise State wins away from the “Smurf Turf,” does it even count?
23. Utah (Last week: lost @ California 28-23) (This week: v. Arizona)
24. Colorado (Last week: def. Oregon State 47-6) (This week: @ Southern California)
25. Virginia Tech (Last week: Bye) (This week: @ no. 15 North Carolina)