AP College Football Poll 2012: Winners and Losers from Week 12
The Oregon Ducks finally reign supreme in the Week 12 AP poll.
After riding Alabama's coattails all season long, the Ducks are now considered to be the top team in the land, and that makes them the biggest winner in this week's poll.
Unlike Oregon, some teams' spots don't seem warranted.
Here are the latest winners and losers.
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Ranking: No. 1 (last week No. 2)
The Oregon players and coaches have to be waking up this morning going, "So this is what it feels like to be ranked No. 1? Finally."
Alabama has fallen, and Oregon is the top dog in the nation. Enjoy it while it lasts, Ducks, but get your mind focused back on the remaining schedule. Because the fact of the matter is that Oregon has had it somewhat easy.
But at the same time, the Ducks have handled their business with blowout victories. No complaint with them being No.1, but just like in boxing or in MMA, they have to defend that No. 1 ranking. It's a lot harder to defend than to attain.
Oregon now has a target on its back and with Stanford and Oregon State left on the schedule, the Ducks will need to bring their A-game in order to avoid what happened to Alabama.
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Ranking: No. 5 (last week No. 5)
Georgia fans have to be wondering how Alabama remained ahead of them following its loss.
Georgia just whooped Auburn 38-0 after manhandling Ole Miss 37-10, and the Bulldogs can't move up one spot?
Alabama barely beats LSU and then loses to Texas A&M, and the Crimson Tide fall to No. 4, ahead of a Georgia team that sports the same exact record.
But then again, fans can't be too upset because they know they'll have their shot at Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. Let's settle this debate on the field.
Winner: Texas A&M
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Ranking: No. 9 (last week No. 15)
Beating the No. 1 team in the world does wonders for the perception surrounding one's football team.
LSU took away from Alabama's aura on Nov. 3 with a nail-biter in Tiger Stadium, and Texas A&M finished what LSU couldn't.
With Johnny Manziel making plays and the defense forcing AJ McCarron to throw costly interceptions, Texas A&M pulled off the incredible upset in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
As expected, the Aggies were vaulted into the Top 10, and with the way Johnny Football is playing right now, that's exactly where they belong.
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Ranking: No. 20 (last week No. 11)
A weak schedule makes a team tumble in the polls with one loss. Just ask Louisville.
Going into their game against Syracuse, the Cardinals were 9-0 with a Heisman hopeful at quarterback. BCS championship implications were on the line, and after Syracuse exposed Louisville, all of those hopes vanished.
To be fair—with Kansas State, Oregon and Notre Dame being undefeated and various SEC schools ranked ahead of them—a championship was never actually going to happen.
With the loss, Louisville can still make the Orange Bowl as the Big East champions, but Teddy Bridgewater's Heisman hopes are all but gone, along with Louisville's chances of finishing in the Top 10.
Winner: Oregon State
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Ranking: No. 15 (last week No. 13)
Voters must love Oregon State.
Despite beating an overrated Wisconsin team, the Beavers have a significant win against UCLA. That is it. The Beavers are 1-2 in their last three games.
Oregon State goes into its game against Stanford ranked as the No. 13 team in the nation, and after losing 27-23, the Beavers drop only two spots. Really?
Stanford jumps to No. 14, and the Beavers drop to No. 15. Yeah, that makes a lot of sense to have Oregon State ranked ahead of a Nebraska team that's won four games in a row.
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Ranking: No. 18 (last week tied No. 19)
Texas should have moved up in the polls simply for the tribute to Darrell Royal. Seriously, how awesome was that?
Running the wishbone and then completing a throwback pass for a 47-yard razzle-dazzle rendition of an old-school formation was magnificent.
And in all seriousness, Texas deserved to move up after beating a durable Iowa State club, 33-7.
The Longhorns have now won four games in a row, including an upset victory against Texas Tech. Yet, they move up one spot in the polls?
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Ranking: No. 23 (last week unranked)
Oh Michigan, it was beginning to look like you weren't going to be ranked in the Top 25.
But then the AP poll reminded college football fans that the Wolverines are the Ray Romano of the sport. Everybody loves 'em, or so it seems.
Simply put—Michigan is undeserving of a Top 25 ranking. The Wolverines are 7-3 on the season, and though 7-3 in the Big Ten would normally warrant such a ranking, things are different this season.
The Big Ten is as weak as it has ever been in quite some time, which has had a direct effect on Michigan's success. It's like a large fish swimming in a small pond.
Loser: Oklahoma State
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Ranking: Unranked (last week unranked)
The biggest problem with Michigan getting in the Top 25 is the fact Oklahoma State was left out of it.
The Cowboys have lost three games this season, all coming in shootouts, so they sport the same record as Michigan. Oh, and according to the computers, the Big 12 is the best conference in football.
Not saying that the computers are correct in this case, but that certainly helps shut down any argument that the Big Ten is tougher than the Big 12.
Oklahoma State is coming off a 55-34 victory against West Virginia, and yet the Pokes must take a backseat to Michigan. Where's the justice in that?