Ranking every college football team after Week 2: Kentucky, Arkansas jump into top 10

There’s nothing flawed with overcorrections in college football rankings this early within the season.

Through two-plus weeks of football, there have been quite a few upsets and stunning outcomes. Three top-10 groups misplaced this previous Saturday to groups exterior the Power 5 conferences. Alabama almost misplaced to Texas and its backup quarterback. We do not know what to anticipate by the tip of the 12 months, however we must also acknowledge that some issues we anticipated this season have not panned out.

In these rankings, groups are rewarded for giant wins. As a consequence, Kentucky and Arkansas have moved into the top 10 The Athletic 131.

Will they be there by the tip of the season? Maybe not. But Kentucky simply went to Florida and pushed across the Gators in a 26-16 win. One week in the past, Utah could not do the identical. The Wildcats introduced the Anthony Richardson hype prepare again to the station, holding him to 14-for-35 passing with two interceptions and simply 4 speeding yards (together with a sack). Kentucky gained 10 video games final 12 months and completed second within the SEC East. The Wildcats had been picked to complete second within the East once more this 12 months. Florida bought numerous love after the Utah win and Tennessee seems to be on the highway again beneath Josh Heupel, however do not forget Kentucky. The Wildcats made us do not forget that on Saturday.

Arkansas beat Cincinnati in Week 1 after which dealt with South Carolina 44-30, speeding for almost 300 yards. The Razorbacks have jumped up in these rankings early within the season after which fallen again at occasions lately. It might all the time occur once more. But quarterback KJ Jefferson has appeared elite to date, finishing 76.6 % of his passes for 8.2 yards per try, 4 touchdowns and nil interceptions, plus two speeding touchdowns. The Razorbacks have a tough schedule developing. After Missouri State this week, they play Texas A&M, Alabama, Mississippi State and BYU, however I’d give them an opportunity in most of these proper now. Maybe Alabama is extra weak than we thought. Maybe not. But there isn’t any cause to not reward groups that win, particularly at a time when it seems like nearly anybody can beat anybody.

A reminder that groups can transfer up after a loss or transfer down after a win. Teams can get jumped just because another person had a extra spectacular win. They will also be impacted when a earlier win or loss seems to be higher or worse with extra outcomes. The rankings will solidify extra as soon as everybody performs a high quality opponent. Head-to-head will not be the only issue because the 12 months goes on, just because it will possibly’t be, however it’s emphasised closely early within the 12 months and works as a tiebreaker between shut groups.

Here’s the Week 3 version of The Athletic 131.

Georgia was already No. 1 in these rankings after Week 1, and that grew to become extra agency after Alabama escaped Austin with a 20-19 win. Along with Kentucky and Arkansas, USC and Oklahoma State have moved into the top 10. The Lincoln Riley-Caleb Williams USC offense seems to be just like the best-case situation proper now, after a 41-28 win at Stanford that was 41-14 going into the fourth quarter. The protection has been common, permitting 21 factors per sport, however the Trojans have eight takeaways. Can that hold going?

11-25

(*10*)

Rank Team Record Prev

11

2-0

21

12

2-0

14

13

2-0

22

14

2-0

17

15

1-1

10

16

1-1

11

17

2-0

34

18

1-1

15

19

1-1

7

20

2-0

23

21

1-1

24

22

2-0

32

23

2-0

57

24

1-1

25

25

2-0

26

BYU’s time beyond regulation win in opposition to Baylor vaults the Cougars up, and it is not unreasonable to start out speaking about them as a College Football Playoff contender with just a few extra wins. Tennessee’s time beyond regulation win at Pitt has the Vols wanting legit. Kansas State is 2-0 after a dominant 40-12 win in opposition to Missouri. I’m shocked the Wildcats aren’t ranked within the polls. Florida drops after its loss to Kentucky, however the Gators keep forward of Utah as a result of they, you realize, beat the Utes final week.

Oregon State strikes into the top 25 after a win at Fresno State on the ultimate play. The Beavers are 2-0 in opposition to two of the most effective within the Group of 5, coupled with the comfy win in opposition to Boise State final week. Marshall vaults into the top 25 as properly after its 26-21 win at Notre Dame.

Texas strikes up just a few spots after almost knocking off Alabama as a result of the Longhorns did certainly look quite a bit higher than anticipated. But I’ve seen too many losses to TCU and Iowa State to totally imagine in them but, particularly with Quinn Ewers sidelined. Texas A&M falls out of the top 10 and into this group after a 17-14 dwelling loss to Appalachian State. It’s behind the Mountaineers, who’re behind North Carolina as a result of Tar Heels’ win in Boone final week. Notre Dame additionally falls out of the top 10 and into this group after the loss to Marshall. The Fighting Irish lack playmakers and have not accomplished a lot since a reasonably profitable first half in opposition to Ohio State. They do not get the good thing about the doubt anymore.

Washington State strikes up after an enormous win at Camp Randall Stadium over Wisconsin. Texas Tech’s time beyond regulation win in opposition to Houston ends in the Red Raiders leaping up as properly.

East Carolina adopted up its slender loss in opposition to NC State with a sound 39-21 win in opposition to Old Dominion. Syracuse’s dominant win in opposition to Louisville final week seems to be even higher now after Louisville gained at UCF. Illinois’ 24-3 win in opposition to Virginia is likely to be the quietest Power 5 win over a Power 5 team all season.

Kansas is 2-0 for the primary time since 2011 after an time beyond regulation win at West Virginia. Has Lance Leipold already turned this factor round? Duke is 2-0 within the Mike Elko period after a win at Northwestern. Georgia Southern’s 642 yards had been essentially the most ever allowed by Nebraska at dwelling, and Clay Helton’s team has adjusted out of the triple-option offense fairly properly. Virginia Tech rebounded from its ODU loss with a 27-10 win in opposition to Boston College.

UCF’s loss in opposition to Louisville was a stunner for a team that is purported to contend for the AAC title this season. Georgia State is 0-2 with two aggressive losses to South Carolina and North Carolina. Don’t be shocked if the Panthers make noise within the Sun Belt. South Alabama was a landing underdog however got here out of Central Michigan with a 38-24 win. Utah State’s 35-7 loss to FCS Weber State was probably the most stunning outcomes of the weekend, and the Aggies tumble consequently.

(Photo of Will Levis: James Gilbert / Getty Images)

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