The Associated Press released their updated rankings today and it actually involves Iowa. But first let’s look at what happened with the rest of the college football world.
What a week‼️ Here's a look at the Week 7 AP Top 25— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 8, 2023
Which team deserves a higher ranking? pic.twitter.com/kyeNHGgZSW
Schools Dropping Out: Missouri
New Schools In: None
Biggest Movers: Louisville (+11), Notre Dame (-11)
Big Ten Teams: #2 Michigan, #3 Ohio State, #6 Penn State
We finally have the first major casualty in the top four as the Texas Longhorns tumble down to #9 following their 34-30 loss in the Red River Rivalry. As usual, the game delivered on the hype with 1,013 total yards, an impressive goal line stand, a late go-ahead field goal by Texas that looked to be just enough for the win, only for Oklahoma to dash those hopes with a touchdown pass with :15 left to play.
Texas drops out of the top four but perhaps more importantly it means their margin of error to make the CFP is razor thin. Sure, it’s still possible for them to get in as their schedule is light as a feather from here on out and they could meet the Sooners again in the conference championship. But look at who’s ahead of them in the poll. At least one Big Ten team is likely to make it in and Georgia reaffirmed their #1 ranking. Washington and Oregon are both rolling this year with next week’s game set to declare the conference favorite. On top of all that, Oklahoma just jumped them and is sitting at #5. In a year where many loudly proclaimed Texas to be back, they’re instead back to looking up at the rival Sooners and on the outside looking in on the championship race.
Oklahoma jumped an impressive seven spots while Penn State, Washington, and Oregon were all idle and stood pat at 6-8. USC survived a scare from Arizona and dropped to #10 despite their win. The top ten hasn’t shifted much throughout the first half of the season but the Oklahoma/Texas result looks to be merely the first tremor of what’s to come. The Huskies and Ducks meet next week while the big three in the Big Ten have yet to play each other. We ought to see plenty more shake ups in the weeks ahead.
The big winner in the poll are the Louisville Cardinals, who jumped 11 spots after a convincing win over Notre Dame. Every Hawkeye’s favorite coach, Jeff Brohm, handed the Irish their first loss against an ACC squad in thirty regular season games. Notre Dame turned the ball over five times and QB Sam Hartman was sacked the same amount. Brohm notched a signature victory in only his sixth game at the helm in The Ville. The Irish, meanwhile, fell to #21 and their CFP hopes are well and truly dashed.
The rest of the poll is a smattering of mostly small movements except for one glaring outlier. The award for second largest change goes to the Miami Hurricanes after they lost to Georgia Tech 23-20. If you thought Marcus Freeman’s decision to play goal line defense with only ten men twice against Ohio State was the dumbest coaching decision of the year, allow me to introduce you to Mario Cristobal’s late game strategy.
Mario Cristobal should be jailed for this pic.twitter.com/QGMVxI78UG— Pregame Empire (@PregameEmpire) October 8, 2023
Georgia Tech would make Miami pay dearly as they then went 74 yards in only 24 seconds to score a go-ahead touchdown and win 23-20. Amazingly enough, this isn’t the first time this has happened to a Cristobal, as his 2018 Oregon Ducks lost to Stanford in overtime after fumbling near the end of regulation instead of taking a knee. I’m almost at a loss for words at how idiotic this was, it’s coaching malpractice for it to happen to you once in your career but twice is unfathomable. There have been a number of times where we’ve seen Kirk’s Hawkeyes take knees while protecting a lead, even within field goal range or mere yards from the goal line and no matter how much we’d like to see them add points. But this is the textbook example of why they do it. At that stage of the game the points don’t matter, the yards don’t matter, the stats don’t matter. Winning is the only thing that matters.
Credit to Georgia Tech as even after Miami fumbled the chances of them scoring a TD were long. Even a field goal would’ve been tough. But as they had shown all night they were up to Miami’s challenge and made plays when they needed to. They deserved to win that game 100% and Cristobal deserves the loss just as much.
Finally let’s get to our Iowa Hawkeyes. They’re still unranked but did garner seven votes by some charitable souls in the media. The Hawks white-knuckled another win, which as I said earlier is really all that matters, but they face their toughest remaining test with a trip to Madison next weekend. Win that game somehow, some way, you’re probably just a few votes outside the top 25. But that win looks light years harder now than it did before the season.
We’re in to the second half of the season. Who has impressed you the most? Who’s disappointed? And is that Miami loss as funny to you as it is to me?