College Football Rankings 2012: Teams New to the Top 25 That Will Keep Climbing

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College Football Rankings 2012: Teams New to the Top 25 That Will Keep Climbing
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The AP Top 25 Poll was shaken up this week and a few teams new to the rankings have only begun their climbs.

This week’s poll, via SportsIllustrated.com, kept Alabama on top, with USC at No. 2. LSU, Oregon and Florida State completed the Top Five, in that order.

Arkansas, Nebraska, Wisconsin and Oklahoma State were all upset and were subsequently booted from the Top 25. UCLA, Tennessee, Arizona and BYU are the newcomers.

Here are the teams that will continue to move up the rankings.

 

UCLA Bruins 

The Bruins looked incredibly impressive on both sides of the ball against Nebraska, and their No. 22 ranking will not be their highest placement in the AP Poll this season. 

Senior running back Jonathan Franklin set the tone on the ground with 217 yards on 26 carries. He also caught three passes for 59 yards and his only touchdown sealed the team’s victory. This was his second consecutive game with over 200 yards rushing, and he now has 431 yards in two games.

Freshman quarterback Brett Hundley elevated his play in the vastly important home game for his team, finishing with 305 yards and four touchdowns through the air. 

On defense, outside linebackers Jordan Zumwalt and Anthony Barr were disruptive forces, and the team was able to limit Taylor Martinez and the Nebraska offense.

With Jim Mora at the helm, this is a disciplined team with the talent to continue moving up the rankings.

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

 

Tennessee Volunteers

The Volunteers will have their toughest test to date next week against No. 18 Florida, but they earned plenty of confidence against Georgia State.

This was an easy matchup, but Derek Dooley could not have asked for any more from his team. 

Quarterback Tyler Bray completed 18 of his 20 passes for 310 yards and four touchdowns. Even in a cakewalk, a 90 percent completion rate is extremely impressive.

This performance came on the heels of a win against North Carolina state, and the Vols showed they have the offensive firepower to beat Florida in these first two games. When that happens, they will continue moving up in the polls.

 

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Arizona Wildcats

Which team new to the top-25 this week will go on to have the best season?

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Rich Rodriguez and the Arizona Wildcats showed they have the necessary talent to compete against college football’s top teams.

Sophomore running back Ka’Deem Carey rushed for 126 yards and three touchdowns on 26 carries, while catching another touchdown against an Oklahoma State team that was coming off an 84-0 victory over Savannah State. Quarterback Matt Scott passed for 320 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.

The Wildcats are another Pac-12 team with a new head coach capable of taking the program to another level.

They proved this by beating a ranked opponent, and they will need a strong showing against Oregon to keep their ranking. Even with a loss against Oregon, the Wildcats can still move up the rankings with wins against other tough conference opponents. 

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