The second edition of the college football power rankings is here. Naturally, there is little information to go on this early in the year, so take these rankings for what they are.
As the season progresses, this list will become less and less fluid. Teams will establish themselves as great, and other teams will drop out of the upper ranges of the list, never to be heard from again.
The AP poll, USA Today coaches poll (both via ESPN.com), Bleacher Report's official poll, Jeff Sagarin's power rankings and my own power rankings were all given equal weight. The average of every team's ranking (if ranked) in each poll was taken, and that average determined where the team was placed.
Average Rank: 126
Georgia State finished last season last in the FBS, and the Panthers led the season off with a 31-21 loss to Southern Conference middler Samford. This is further confirmation that it is not at all easy to start an FBS team from scratch.
Average Rank: 123.5
South Alabama joined Georgia State in losing to a less-than-impressive FCS squad in its season opener. The Jaguars may be heading in the right direction, but the journey takes years, not months.
Average Rank: 123
New Mexico lost to UTSA (coming sooner rather than later in this show) 21-13 on Aug. 31. The Lobos are not going to fare well against the stiffer competition that's on their schedule, but there are a few teams who will give them the opportunity to come up from 124th.
Average Rank: 122.5
Akron lost to Blake Bortles and the UCF Knights on Aug. 29 by a score of 38-7. While lots of teams are going to lose to UCF this season, Akron managed to rank among the worst teams in the league in scoring defense (93rd). This would have gone over much better if it were to a more talented team.
Average Rank: 121.5
Massachusetts was shut out 45-0 by Wisconsin in Week 1. The Minutemen haven't been models of success lately, and it will take time to set the program straight. Games against Maine, Western Michigan and Akron will give them the opportunity to move up on this list over the next few months.
Average Rank: 121.5
Idaho lost to North Texas 40-6 last week, and the Mean Green are still outside the top 100 on this list. Though the Vandals tried to fool everyone into thinking North Texas was a good team, nobody fell for it.
Average Rank: 121
The UTSA Roadrunners aren't expected to do well this season, but they started off on the wrong (right?) foot by beating the New Mexico Lobos 21-13 in the opener. UTSA can still beat more teams on its schedule and move up the rankings, but the next couple (against Oklahoma State and Arizona) are practically guaranteed losses.
Average Rank: 120
Eastern Michigan is one of the few teams this low on the list to have won its game last week. The Eagles defeated Howard 34-24. Next up, they face Penn State, followed quickly by Rutgers and Ball State before getting a break. Any win between now and the end of September would be a big upset.
Average Rank: 119
Coming in at 119th on a list like this may not look like you have much to brag about. However, New Mexico State can still claim state superiority over the New Mexico Lobos.
That wasn't evident against the Texas Longhorns, but Texas could beat at least 30 teams in the country 56-7. It's nothing to get riled up about, Aggies fans.
Average Rank: 116
Florida International is fighting for respect in a state that contains the Miami Hurricanes, Florida Gators, Florida State Seminoles, UCF Knights, South Florida Bulls and the Florida Atlantic Owls...and that's just the FBS teams.
The Golden Panthers have a long way to go before earning that respect, but they can feasibly launch an attack against FAU, USF and possibly UCF on a good day. For now, they sit at 117th heading into Week 2.
Following a 43-10 defeat by the Maryland Terrapins, this is about as high as can be expected at the moment.
Average Rank: 115
Tulane has one of the greatest kickers in the country in Cairo Santos. However, a kicker can't win every single game by himself. (Rarely can a kicker win a game by himself; the offense needs to at least get him within three points of the opponent first.)
If the Green Wave's offense can get off the ground, they may be able to crack the bowl season even as one of the bottom-tier FBS teams.
Average Rank: 115
The Miami Redhawks got owned by Rakeem Cato and the Marshall Thundering Herd last week. Due to strength of schedule and a valid depth chart, the 'Hawks can definitely move up this list. However, with a performance like last week's, it still looks like they'll be on the outside of the top 100.
Average Rank: 113.5
Florida Atlantic is one of the Sunshine State teams mentioned in the Florida International slide. These guys lost to the Miami Hurricanes in the season opener 34-6, and they made the Miami defense look good.
Only the remainder of the season will tell us whether Miami's that good or the Owls are that bad. Currently, they stand at No. 114.
Average Rank: 111.5
Texas State took down Southern Miss in the season opener, but it was a close game (22-15). While the Golden Eagles are still temporarily ahead of the Bobcats in the power rankings, there is plenty of season left for Texas State to prove it's really improved that much. Don't be too surprised if that happens.
Average Rank: 112.5
Colorado State fell victim to the dreaded revenge match against the Colorado Buffaloes in the season opener, so it's going to be an arduous climb from there to the top 100. Luckily, there is a solid head coach on the job in Jim McElwain.
It may take a few more seasons, but don't get too comfortable with the Rams down here near the bottom. There are still winnable games all over CSU's schedule, so the move up could be quicker than anticipated.
Average Rank: 111
Army is entering yet another season in which it is not the favorite to win the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. Sadly, this has become the recent norm around West Point. Things will eventually shift in the Black Knights' favor again, but not this season.
Well, at least it's not expected. Anything can happen on any Saturday, and that includes Air Force and Navy both dropping winnable games to these guys.
Average Rank: 110
UNLV dropped its season opener to the Minnesota Golden Gophers 51-23. That is the kind of season that the Rebels are looking forward to if they can't get some momentum against either Central Michigan or Western Illinois in the next three weeks. (Arizona is up next, and UNLV is not winning that game without a miraculous pregame speech.)
Average Rank: 109
Southern Miss, after playing a close game against Texas State on Aug. 31, is still flirting with the top 100. The Golden Eagles' season could go either way at this point, but the Bobcats were the most beatable team on the slate this year.
Without that win, it would be wise if they would put in a little extra work each week leading up to the Florida International game in early October. The three games between now and then are not likely to be won, and improving over last year's 0-12 run has to be their top priority.
Average Rank: 106.5
UAB started off with a three-point loss to in-state rival Troy, and there are four more games on the Blazers' schedule in which they should be favored. Middle Tennessee should be a toss-up game, and the Blazers would need to find just one more win to qualify for the postseason.
So far, the going is not good, but they should still be able to improve over last season's three-win total.
Average Rank: 106.5
Middle Tennessee is currently tied with UAB for 107th on the list, but that will be settled on Nov. 2 later this season. As of right now, the Blue Raiders have led off 1-0 with a 45-24 victory over the Western Carolina Catamounts.
Middle Tennessee has a lot of possible wins on the schedule, but the question is whether it will convert them.
Average Rank: 106
Old Dominion has a great quarterback, but the East Carolina Pirates proved to be too much for the Monarchs to handle. There will be a significant number of games that turn out that way, but there will be others that play out the exact opposite.
ODU should end up right around 100th on this list by the end of the season.
Average Rank: 105.5
Troy won a squeaker over UAB on Aug. 31, and the Trojans are set to inch their way up the rankings if they can keep the momentum going strong. However, it will take momentum and skill to make it through their schedule.
Arkansas State, Mississippi State and Duke each host Troy over a three-week stretch beginning in Week 3. This schedule may not be the toughest in the country, but it's a gauntlet nonetheless.
Average Rank: 105
Hawaii showed flashes of excellent defense against the USC Trojans in Week 1, but the question is whether that was improvement shown by the Warriors or just really inept offense from USC. Assuming it was a mixture of the two (which is the smart move), Hawaii has earned its jump up from the No. 123 spot last week.
Average Rank: 103.5
Memphis still hasn't played a snap of 2013 football, so the Tigers' ranking has changed from 109th solely because other teams around them have moved. (That and the fact that Sagarin's rankings are now part of the formula.)
A monster win over the Duke Blue Devils on Sept. 7 would completely change the face of this program. It's unlikely, but so was a weekend of eight FCS teams upsetting the schools that paid them to play.
Average Rank: 101.5
Central Michigan lost to Michigan 59-9, but the Chippewas have a nice game against an inexperienced New Hampshire scheduled for Week 2. With a win there, CMU will confirm its spot here. As long as the Chippewas don't lose the games they're supposed to win, this spot on the list is theirs.
Average Rank: 100
North Texas started the season with a dominant win over the Idaho Vandals, 40-6. If the Mean Green can tack on a win over the Ohio Bobcats in Week 2, they will definitely start moving up the rankings immediately.
Average Rank: 99.5
Buffalo is coming off a competitive game against the No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes, which the Bulls lost 40-20. Now they are heading down to Baylor to get the other Goliath out of the way. After Week 2, Buffalo will really start collecting meaningful data.
Of course, if the Bulls manage to upset Baylor, that would certainly put some meaningful data on the stat sheets.
Average Rank: 98.5
UTEP could still be one of the more underrated teams in the country, even at No. 99. The Miners lead off against New Mexico, New Mexico State and UTSA. Due to that lineup, the Miners should be halfway to bowl season in Week 4 with a win over UTSA.
Average Rank: 98
Colorado helped its cause greatly with the 14-point win over Colorado State last week, and the Buffaloes can look forward to a better season than last year if they keep that kind of intensity up.
Just don't forget that a 2-10 season would still be an improvement on what happened in 2012. These guys have a few years to go before they can compete in the Pac-12.
Average Rank: 96.5
Illinois played a tight game with FCS in-state foe Southern Illinois, but an errant throw on the final Saluki play of the game sealed the 42-34 win for the Illini. The biggest issues here are fourth-quarter defense and a one-dimensional offense.
If they can't fix those two things, the Big Ten is going to eat them alive.
Average Rank: 95.5
Western Michigan's loss was one of the better ones of opening week. The Broncos lost to Michigan State 26-13. Competing with a Big Ten team of the Spartans' quality is definitely a good thing.
Yes, a win would have been better, but the Broncos have Nicholls State this week. They'll get a win then.
Average Rank: 91.5
Wake Forest and Boston College meet in Week 2, and both earned wins over FCS opponents on opening weekend. Wake's win was a little more convincing at 31-7 over Presbyterian, but this week's game will tell us without a doubt which team is actually better.
Average Rank: 90.5
Marshall started the season as expected. The Thundering Herd came away with a 52-14 win over the Miami Redhawks, and they racked up almost 600 yards of total offense in the process. Oddly enough, quarterback phenom Rakeem Cato passed for less than half of those yards.
When Cato gets going against a solid rush defense, fans will really see him shine as he picks the secondary apart. Marshall is on the watch list for a top-50 finish, but we'll need to see more proof.
Average Rank: 90.5
Boston College's win last week was a 24-14 effort over Villanova. This is what makes the Eagles so difficult to rank. Were they playing down to their competition, or were they simply almost beaten by an FCS squad? (Which, by the way, a lot of teams would gladly have taken during opening weekend.)
The Eagles are under new management, but how quickly can Steve Addazio get this team back on a successful bearing? The 2013 season doesn't look great, but that doesn't mean it won't be.
Average Rank: 87.5
Western Kentucky has a brilliant football mentor on the sidelines named Bobby Petrino. The Hilltoppers were already successful before he came along, and he'll do nothing but improve the program. They already upset the Kentucky Wildcats of the SEC East as their opening act this fall.
It will be interesting to follow the Petrino story as it plays out in Bowling Green.
Average Rank: 87.5
South Florida is a bit of a mystery this season. I mean, nobody expected the Bulls to crash the BCS or anything, but a 53-21 loss to McNeese State is simply mind-boggling. There is still a minimum of 11 games left for the Bulls to prove that it was a fluke, but one more performance like that will push them out of the top 100 with almost no hope of returning.
Average Rank: 87.5
Air Force may be a service academy with a disadvantage on the recruiting trail, but you'd never know it from the Falcons rushing attack. Even after just one game, they are ranked third nationally with 409 yards on the ground.
The Falcons depend on the run to win games year in and year out, and they still manage to compete for bowl games and the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy almost every season. The fall of 2013 will be more of the same from the Air Force Academy.
Average Rank: 87
Wyoming's Brett Smith is a role model for anyone who has ever said the words "mind over matter." Smith spent a large portion of the offseason studying with notable groups of pro quarterbacks in order to make himself better, and it worked.
Behind his efforts, Wyoming (4-8 in 2012) nearly offed the No. 18 Nebraska Cornhuskers on opening weekend. The Cowboys did lose by three points, but that loss looks excellent compared to some of the other losses rolling around from that Saturday.
Average Rank: 87
Washington State struggled to find wins last season, but the Cougars appeared to be heading in the right direction with the closing win over the Washington Huskies. The improvement seems to have taken a strong hold, as they went toe-to-toe with Auburn for 60 minutes in Week 1.
Auburn is now governed by the offensive coordinator that brought the Tigers the 2010 national championship, so that seven-point loss will look better and better as the season progresses (assuming that the Tigers are as good as everyone thinks they are).
Average Rank: 85.5
Connecticut somehow managed to lose to Towson (33-18) on opening weekend, and that loss casts a giant shadow over the program until further notice. Granted, some of that was due to five missing starters who were selected in the 2013 NFL draft, but someone has to step up for each of those men.
If not, this 87th ranking is not going to last long, and not in a good way.
Average Rank: 84
Kentucky lost to Western Kentucky (as discussed in the WKU slide), but the Wildcats are just now seeing the first season under new head coach Mark Stoops. Kentucky has been at the bottom of the SEC for a few seasons now, and that's not going to change instantly.
Average Rank: 84
Duke is replacing its starting quarterback, and that issue will rear its head before the end of the season. However, against NC Central, the Blue Devils rolled 45-0. The score against Memphis won't be as lopsided, but a victory this weekend will definitely confirm that Duke belongs somewhere around here in the rankings.
Average Rank: 83
Houston destroyed Southern 62-13 last week, and the Cougars seem to have figured out the whole offensive aspect of college football during the offseason. The quarterback situation could use a little improvement, but they racked up almost 600 total yards with 372 on the ground.
Nobody in Houston's corner is complaining about the result or the style of play. If that display of offense was truly representative of what's to come, Houston has as good a shot as anyone at the AAC title.
Average Rank: 82
Temple struggled to put points on the board against Notre Dame last week, and the Owls ended up on the losing end of a 28-6 score. Notre Dame has an excellent defensive line, but the bigger issue was Temple's lack of defensive integrity at the beginning of the game.
Notre Dame scored its first two touchdowns on a total of six plays, and three-play drives like that can cause a team to give up on a game long before it's truly out of hand. If Temple doesn't figure out how to stop the bleeding, it's going to be a long season.
Average Rank: 78.5
Kansas just witnessed what happens to teams that don't respect the FCS, and the Jayhawks are opening their season against the South Dakota Coyotes this weekend. Charlie Weis is heading into his second year with the program, and at least a little improvement is expected, if not demanded.
Kansas should deliver, considering its 2012 run yielded a 1-11 record.
Average Rank: 75.5
Purdue is missing a lot of experience at quarterback, and the Boilermakers proved how much the position matters with a 42-7 loss to the Cincinnati Bearcats last week. They have a prime opportunity to redeem themselves with a near-flawless performance against Indiana State on Sept. 7.
Average Rank: 75.5
Louisiana Tech is simply lost without record-setting quarterback Colby Cameron. To make matters even more difficult, Sonny Dykes (head coach) and Tony Franklin (offensive coordinator) are both with California now.
Louisiana Tech is in for a rough ride this fall.
Average Rank: 75.5
Louisiana-Monroe couldn't get a single thing working for it against Oklahoma last week, and the Warhawks are heading into a must-win against Grambling State. Kolton Browning is one of the best quarterbacks in the country, and he made himself a household name with the 2012 win over the Arkansas Razorbacks.
Unless he's completely lost his gift, ULM will rise up these rankings as the season goes along.
Average Rank: 75.5
Kent State struggled with its season-opening FCS opponent, and that's due in part to Dri Archer's leg injury that sidelined him early in the game. Kent State has a wealth of talent, and it's baffling that the Golden Flashes couldn't ride Trayion Durham's 4.4 yards per carry to more success.
It was still a win, so with cautious optimism, the Flashes drop to 78th instead of further.
Average Rank: 74.5
Nevada's season could go either way after the 58-20 drubbing UCLA handed it last week. The Bruins have a sound defense, so it's not overly concerning that the Wolf Pack didn't put up more than 20, but it would be false to say that we didn't expect more.
There is one more warm-up game (UC Davis) before Nevada takes on Famous Jameis and the Florida State Seminoles. If Cody Fajardo doesn't figure out how to work around solid defenses, Nevada is starting the season 1-2.
Average Rank: 73
San Diego State lost by three touchdowns to Eastern Illinois last week. The Aztecs are in dire need of a win...any win. Ohio State hosts them on Sept. 7, and that is not likely the opportunity SDSU was looking for. Eventually, San Diego State will transform into the bowl-quality team we've all come to know.
For Aztecs fans, let's hope it's in time to qualify for the 2013 postseason.
Average Rank: 72.5
Maryland beat Florida International (discussed on FIU's slide), and the Terrapins host Old Dominion this weekend. As long as they can hold down the fort in the secondary, the Monarchs shouldn't give them too much to fear.
One slip-up, even a small one, could open the door for Taylor Heinicke to push Maryland down this list a good bit.
Average Rank: 70.5
Taylor McHargue is the heartbeat of this offense, and he led Rice to a 31-point performance against the Texas A&M Aggies last week, even though it was a loss. As the bye week passes, the Owls will be watching and studying the Kansas Jayhawks in preparation for the Sept. 14 meeting.
The Owls have a lock on this tier of the rankings for at least another week.
Average Rank: 70.5
Ball State and Rice are tied here, but there is one temporary advantage that the Cardinals have over the Owls: They play Army while Rice is on its bye. Sure, the bottom line is everybody has a 12-game schedule for the regular season, but any advantage is worth mentioning.
If Ball State beats Army (as it should), expect this tie to be broken.
Average Rank: 68
Louisiana-Lafayette may have lost its first game of the season, but that doesn't mean that it hasn't earned this spot. The Ragin' Cajuns are up against Kansas State this week, so look for a hard-fought battle worth watching.
Louisiana is still an underrated team, but the Cajuns will have to earn their spot on the list one game at a time, just like everyone else.
Average Rank: 67.5
SMU is a perfect example of a middle-of-the-pack team. Last season, the Mustangs went 6-6 during the regular season and practically alternated wins and losses to achieve that record. For every game that SMU loses, there's a win coming soon. The good news for fans of this team is that the Week 2 match against Montana State looks like one of those wins.
Average Rank: 67
Utah started off on the right foot with a good win over the Utah State Aggies. This was a great start to the 2013 season, and it's already an improvement over last year's three-point loss to the same Aggies.
Last season, the Utes finished 61st in the Sagarin ratings. So far, it looks like the loss of Star Lotulelei isn't going to hurt them too badly.
Average Rank: 67
Navy opens its 2013 season on Sept. 7 against the Indiana Hoosiers in a likely loss. (We will cover Indiana in just a few slides.) After that game, the Midshipmen have a slate full of games that could go either way.
If Navy really buckles down and focuses, there are as many as nine wins on the schedule before the postseason teams are selected.
Average Rank: 66.5
The Ohio Bobcats surprised a lot of people by scoring zero points against the Louisville Cardinals on Sept. 1. Tyler Tettleton and Beau Blankenship form one of the most statistically intimidating backfields in college football, and it was unusual to see them so ineffective.
However, one bad game affects a team's power ranking differently than its BCS chances. The loss to Louisville was expected, so not much movement for the Bobcats this week.
Average Rank: 66
Iowa State was one of the FBS teams to fall to an FCS opponent on opening weekend, and that hurt the Cyclones a good bit. They are firmly ensconced in the middle of the rankings until they decide which route they want to take: success or failure.
There's a nice cross-conference, in-state rivalry game against the Iowa Hawkeyes coming on Sept. 14. That match should shed more light on the subject.
Average Rank: 64.5
Minnesota is off to the races in 2013, with three weeks of near-guaranteed wins at the beginning of the schedule. The Golden Gophers already defeated UNLV, and the next two teams are New Mexico State and Western Illinois, in that order.
That means that Minnesota will be halfway to bowl season before stepping on the field against its first conference foe, Iowa, on Sept. 28.
Average Rank: 64.333
Arkansas State racked up the most rushing yards in the country in Week 1, with 509 against Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The Red Wolves travel to Auburn for what should be an entertaining matchup that could go either way.
The Wolves had better bring their best efforts, because Gus Malzahn isn't fielding the same team that Louisiana-Monroe nearly beat last season.
Average Rank: 63
The California Golden Bears had an exciting game against the Northwestern Wildcats in their season opener, and if it wasn't for a "targeting" ejection (and technical difficulties that prevented review), there's no telling how that game would have ended.
California appears to be infinitely better than it was last season, and that's saying a lot given the caliber of Northwestern's defense. This stay in the middle of the rankings should be short-lived.
Average Rank: 61.5
Pittsburgh's only game thus far was an incredibly efficient demolition at the hands of Jameis Winston and the Florida State Seminoles (more on them later). The Panthers looked rough out there, and the final score was 41-13 in favor of FSU.
Since that loss was expected, the Panthers aren't judged too harshly for it, though there are concerns about Pitt's offense now.
Average Rank: 61.5
Indiana had one of the best offensive performances in history last week against Indiana State. The Hoosiers came away with an impressive 73-35 victory in which both sides of the ball looked vastly improved over last year's group.
Indiana is sitting right in the middle of the power rankings right now, but if that game was a preview of the season, the Hoosiers will make their way into the Big Ten title discussion for at least a week.
Average Rank: 61
Syracuse lost to Penn State last week, but that was expected after what the Nittany Lions did to the Big Ten last season. The Orange are heading for a rather disappointing year compared to last fall.
Replacing Justin Pugh and Ryan Nassib is no easy task, and that will cost 'Cuse a few wins along the way.
Average Rank: 60
Iowa lost a 30-27 heartbreaker to Jordan Lynch and the Northern Illinois Huskies in Week 1, and the Hawkeyes are facing the same tendency to buckle when the finish line is near. For now, they still look good enough to overcome that issue, but things seemed too familiar to give them the benefit of the doubt.
They'll have to prove they've changed before moving up the list.
Average Rank: 59.5
Toledo has Terrance Owens and David Fluellen, two of the most lethal offensive players in the MAC. You wouldn't know that about them from the Florida game, but the Gators defense may just be that good.
Until things are sorted out a bit better against Missouri, Toledo occupies a place-holding spot near the middle of the field.
Average Rank: 59
East Carolina beat the Old Dominion Monarchs 52-38 on Aug. 31, and that puts things into perspective for the Pirates. While Old Dominion is not an established FBS brand yet, Taylor Heinicke is.
The Pirates staved off the offensive attack and returned fire on the ODU defense. ECU is heading for the top 50 this season if it can stay out of its own way.
Average Rank: 59
Auburn worked hard to hold off Washington State on opening weekend, and the Tigers scored something that eluded them all throughout 2012: a win over an AQ team. Auburn is looking at the Gene Chizik era in the rear-view mirror, but it's still recent.
If the Tigers are indeed competitors again, it will take some time to win back public faith.
Average Rank: 56.5
On opening day, NC State beat a Louisiana Tech squad that looked nothing like its successful 2012 iteration. The Wolfpack's biggest takeaway from that game is that their offense is still capable after losing quarterback Mike Glennon to the NFL.
With that question answered, NC State sits firmly inside the top half of FBS teams.
Average Rank: 56
West Virginia beat William & Mary 24-17, and this should raise some eyebrows all across the country. Well, at least in the Big 12. Without Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey and Geno Smith, the Mountaineers are going to be a relatively easy team to beat.
Unless the Week 1 game was played that way to lull the conference into a false sense of security.
Average Rank: 53.25
Bowling Green made a statement against the defending C-USA champions in Week 1, and the Falcons are heading for the postseason as quickly as possible. Next on the docket is Kent State, the 2012 MAC runner-up.
If Bowling Green can earn a win there, the Falcons would be completely legitimized.
Average Rank: 49.667
Missouri has already made the best of a healthy roster with a win over Murray State. As Toledo comes to town, the Tigers need to concentrate on team rhythm, fundamental football and, of course, avoiding injury.
Missouri is about to show the SEC what was supposed to happen in 2012.
Average Rank: 49
Quarterback Blake Bortles led Central Florida to a dominant 38-7 win over the Akron Zips on Aug. 29, and the Knights have plenty of skilled players on the roster to help continue that success. Week 2 is a road trip to Florida International, and the score should look similar to the Akron game.
UCF has plenty of upside, and the relatively favorable schedule points to a December bowl game for the Knights.
Average Rank: 48.5
Rutgers suffered the wrath of Derek Carr and Fresno State in Week 1, but the Scarlet Knights took the Bulldogs to overtime. That means Rutgers has the ability to win any game on its schedule, even though some will be incredibly difficult.
Until the Scarlet Knights pull off a major victory, such as against Louisville or another one over Arkansas, they will remain hovering around the No. 50 slot.
Average Rank: 48.333
San Jose State won its tune-up game against Sacramento State, and the Spartans must now visit Stanford with the goal of taking down a current Top Five team. The Spartans took the Cardinal within three points last season, but that was at San Jose State.
Even without a win over Stanford, though, this team will be on the short list of potential MWC champions.
Average Rank: 48
Tulsa is still in control of its fortunes as far as a C-USA title is concerned, but it's all uphill from now until conference play kicks off. After losing to Bowling Green in Week 1, the Golden Hurricane are taking on Colorado State and Oklahoma.
Tulsa has a lot of potential—fans just hope that's not where it ends.
Average Rank: 44
Oklahoma State felt so bad for Mississippi State after the season opener that it gave the Bulldogs their lunch money back. Mississippi State proved that it is susceptible to a good defense, and that does not bode well for its trip through the SEC schedule in 2013.
On the bright side, the Bulldogs held Oklahoma State to just 21 points, so the defense is not a major concern. (Holding a Big 12 title contender to 21 points should, in theory, produce a win.) The Bulldogs will make a bowl game this season, but it won't be held in January.
Average Rank: 43.333
Utah State lost its opener to Utah by four points. Gary Andersen is no longer in charge of the program, and that is going to affect the outcome of more games than fans care to admit. Meanwhile, Air Force hosts the Aggies in Week 2.
The Falcons bring one of the best rushing attacks in the country, and Utah State gave up 3.4 yards per carry to the Utes. This also does not indicate a dominant win...unless it's by Air Force.
If the Aggies win this game, it will be because of quarterback Chuckie Keeton. That's blessed news for the fans in the stands.
Average Rank: 42.5
Arkansas has Bret Bielema in command now, and the Razorbacks came away from the Louisiana-Lafayette game with a solid 34-14 win. That's not comparable to an SEC title or anything, but this Razorbacks unit will look more like the 2011 edition than the 2012 one.
That's welcomed news to Hogs fans across the nation, and not quite as exciting for the rest of the SEC West.
Average Rank: 41
North Carolina faced South Carolina in the season opener in what was expected to be a loss. That sentiment wasn't nearly as correct as anticipated, though, as UNC held the Gamecocks to a 17-point win.
UNC isn't going to be winning a national championship this season, but anyone who simply wrote the Tar Heels off because of personnel losses to the NFL has been apprised of the situation. UNC will compete for the ACC title.
The question is not whether the Heels will get close, it's only how close they'll get.
Average Rank: 41
Oregon State was one of the unfortunate teams to lose to an FCS opponent in Week 1. The Beavers were bested by the Eastern Washington Eagles 49-46. Oregon State has a lot of minor deficits to work through, including the loss of one major defensive star, Jordan Poyer.
Oregon State can still compete for a BCS bowl bid, but the odds are significantly lower when you're a Pac-12 squad that's wasted a loss on a non-FBS team.
Average Rank: 41
Georgia Tech finished last season with a bowl win over Pac-12 power USC, and the Yellow Jackets started 2013 with a 70-0 win over Elon. Georgia Tech may not get nearly as much hype as the Florida States and Clemsons of the ACC, but the Yellow Jackets are definitely contenders for the ACC again this year.
Average Rank: 39.75
Arizona's schedule started with one of three easily winnable games in a row. The Wildcats stomped Northern Arizona 35-0, and they'll take care of UNLV and UTSA in similar fashion.
The Wildcats shouldn't drop in the rankings until at least the Washington game on Sept. 28.
Average Rank: 37.5
BYU lost a tough game against the Virginia Cavaliers, and that is not how the Cougars usually do business. They dominated a good Georgia Tech team last season, and stud linebacker Kyle Van Noy has become a potential game-changer on any given play throughout his tenure.
BYU dropped a bit due to the loss, but the Cougars are good enough to come back strong and get into the Top 25 before the season is over.
Average Rank: 35
Vanderbilt and Ole Miss put on a show in Week 1, and Vandy had the advantage all the way up until it counted. When the final whistle blew, the Rebels had won 39-35. Even with the loss, Vanderbilt looked better than it rightfully should have.
The Commodores lost quarterback Logan Rodgers and running back Zac Stacy this offseason, and Vanderbilt was supposed to look like the usual punching bag it used to be. James Franklin is apparently doing something special with the program.
Average Rank: 34.8
Northern Illinois picked up an important win over the Iowa Hawkeyes to kick off its potential BCS-busting campaign of 2013. The next two games will be much more lopsided than that, as they are against Idaho and Eastern Illinois.
Jordan Lynch will lead the Huskies close to (if not into) the BCS again this winter.
Average Rank: 34.8
Fresno State methodically outplayed the Rutgers Scarlet Knights and brought home a win in one of its toughest games of the year. Now, Cal Poly and Colorado are lined up to give the Bulldogs a 3-0 start to the final season of the BCS.
Derek Carr will have his squad right here (or higher) for at least the next two editions of this piece.
Average Rank: 34
Cincinnati demolished the Purdue Boilermakers without much fanfare at all. (Mostly due to the airwaves being jammed with Clemson propaganda.) The Bearcats have a shot at the AAC title, but Louisville (and others) are going to make it a lot more difficult than Purdue did.
For now, a solid win over a Big Ten team is enough to put Cincinnati on the outskirts of the Top 25.
Average Rank: 33.667
Penn State takes on Eastern Michigan after having Syracuse as an appetizer. (It was a little tough, but delicious.) The Nittany Lions are on track for new quarterback Christian Hackenberg to lead them into a new era of football, and he started his career with a gutsy victory. (Some quarterbacks go an entire career without that type of close win.)
Average Rank: 33.4
Boise State got thrashed by the Washington Huskies in the season-opening rematch of last year's Las Vegas Bowl. The Broncos still face an easy enough schedule to pull out a recognizable bowl bid, but the BCS picture is bleak for the boys in blue.
As of right now, there are no ranked teams on the schedule, and that leaves Boise with few options.
Average Rank: 33.333
Kansas State didn't quite make it to the winner's circle against defending FCS national champion North Dakota State, and that hurts the Wildcats' chances for a lot of things. On the bright side, that could be the one factor that Bill Snyder was missing from the motivation equation.
If Snyder does what he does best, Kansas State will rally before the season is over. If the Wildcats are just that lost without Collin Klein, then this is going to be a long year.
Average Rank: 33
Texas Tech appears to be a decent team with a large amount of potential. Preferred starting quarterback Michael Brewer was injured for the first game, so the Red Raiders started true freshman Baker Mayfield.
That makes the season-opening win over SMU that much more impressive. If Texas Tech is this good with a completely inexperienced quarterback at the helm, just think of what the Raiders can do with Brewer under center.
Average Rank: 31.25
Virginia Tech proved that it probably belongs in the Top 25 during a loss. Now that's impressive.
Average Rank: 29.4
Michigan State did not attract any meaningful attention with its 26-13 win over Western Michigan, but it was still a win over an FBS program. One thing is sure: The Spartans need to improve over the next two weeks, or that Notre Dame match is going to suck all the momentum out of the season.
Average Rank: 27.4
Ole Miss came from behind to beat the Vanderbilt Commodores (as discussed in the Vandy slide earlier), and that was a huge moment for the Rebels. It's one thing to be more talented or better prepared than an opponent. It's another to show up, get behind and dig in to secure the win.
Ole Miss isn't going to win the SEC, but there isn't a single team on its schedule that it can't beat just once.
Average Rank: 26.2
Arizona State is devilishly close to a berth in the Top 25, and the Sun Devils had just short of an extra week to prepare for their first opponent. That was Sacramento State on Sept. 5. The Sun Devils defeated the Hornets 55-0.
We won't know more until further games are played, especially the Week 3 match against a ranked Wisconsin Badgers unit.
Average Rank: 25.8
Miami has a season-defining game against Florida on Sept. 7, and the Hurricanes can set the bar for biggest leap of the season (in the Top 25) with a victory over the Gators.
Miami already proved that its defense is improved by holding Florida Atlantic to just six points, but the true test will be the Week 2 battle royal.
Average Rank: 25
USC displayed a lot of issues against the Hawaii Warriors in Week 1, but there is time to improve before the schedule gets extremely tough. Washington State visits the Trojans for their second game of the season.
If the offense hasn't learned to play better over this past week, this could be a shocking upset.
Average Rank: 23.8
Baylor showed up on opening weekend and gave fans a boatload of information about its offense during the win over the Wofford Terriers. The most important detail? That Baylor will be fine without Nick Florence. Sure, Wofford isn't Oklahoma, but the Bears definitely will win against Buffalo in the next game.
Average Rank: 23.4
True to its form from the 2012 postseason, Northwestern's defense came through and scored 14 points in the Wildcats' 14-point win over the California Golden Bears. The Wildcats have a few more games before the brutality of their schedule really sets in.
Look for them to stay here (or move up) at least until the back-to-back games against Ohio State and Wisconsin.
Average Rank: 22.2
Washington's major Week 1 win was already covered in the Boise State slide, but the biggest lesson from that game is that Keith Price came to play in 2013. If he's at his best, no team in the Pac-12 is safe.
The next game on the Huskies' schedule is against Illinois on Sept. 14, and it will be tough, but Washington is better than the Illini in every facet of the sport. It should be over at halftime.
Average Rank: 21.8
Wisconsin took out UMass 45-0 in its season opener, and the Badgers face Tennessee Tech next. With many questionable games on the schedule, fans will simply be happy to watch a game they're sure Wisconsin can't lose.
The Badgers are contending for yet another Rose Bowl, and it's more than a safe bet that Tennessee Tech won't be the team to spoil the run.
Average Rank: 21.6
Nebraska is one of the teams that would like to ruin Wisconsin's trip to the Rose Bowl, and the 'Huskers have already taken the first step: winning the first game. Granted, they almost lost to Wyoming, but that's because the Cowboys have a top-tier quarterback as a secret weapon.
Southern Miss will bring no such surprises to the table, and Nebraska should breeze through this one. Of course, that was the perception about Wyoming, too...
Average Rank: 20.8
TCU respected the nation by scheduling a monster season opener against the LSU Tigers. The loss has set the Horned Frogs back a bit as far as the Top 25 is concerned, but they are still undefeated in conference play.
With the Big 12 title firmly on the horizon, don't look for TCU to stumble against Southeastern Louisiana this week. The Frogs will be here again next week, barring one of the biggest upsets in college football history.
Average Rank: 18.6
UCLA's Brett Hundley picked the Nevada defense apart and came away with a 58-20 win. The Bruins are still expected to compete for the Pac-12 title, and it is impossible for UCLA to lose in Week 2.
The Bruins have a bye week, and they face Nebraska next. Hundley had better spend the next few days working with his receivers, because Taylor Martinez and company have the ability to change a game in a heartbeat.
Average Rank: 17
Michigan hosts Notre Dame in one of the most anticipated games of Week 2. In fact, ESPN's GameDay has been in Ann Arbor all week just waiting for kickoff. The Wolverines and the Irish have solid trenches, and they both have excellent defenses.
Both teams need this win badly, and a big loss could push either squad out of the Top 25. So far, the 59-9 win over Central Michigan puts the Wolverines at a serious advantage on offense.
Average Rank: 15.2
Texas took New Mexico State to the woodshed in Week 1, but the next matchup is against a much tougher opponent: BYU. The Cougars will gladly take advantage of David Ash's relative lack of experience if he doesn't keep his wits about him.
Texas is the better team, but Kyle Van Noy would be the best linebacker on half the squads in the Top 25. He has proven himself capable of turning a game around by himself, and the Longhorns need to respect him at all times.
Average Rank: 14.6
Oklahoma stopped Louisiana-Monroe dead in its tracks on opening weekend, and that's no small feat when Kolton Browning is on the roster. The Sooners defense looked slightly better than Texas', and that's the slight edge that put them here at No. 15.
The Red River Rivalry will settle this particular argument later in the season, but educated speculation will have to suffice for the time being. One thing has already been settled: Oklahoma isn't running scared without Landry Jones.
Average Rank: 12.6
Notre Dame took out Temple 28-6 last week, and the Irish take on a vastly improved Michigan squad next. The Wolverines will give Notre Dame everything it can handle, and possibly more.
However, Louis Nix and Stephon Tuitt will be doing everything in their power to disrupt the Michigan offense and create turnovers. While Notre Dame isn't expected to make it through a grueling 2013 schedule, the same was true of 2012.
Until it's proven incorrect, the Irish belong in the Top 25, the only question is where.
Average Rank: 12
Louisville completely shut Ohio's offense down last week, and that's impressive. Tyler Tettleton and Beau Blankenship usually have their collective way with a defense for at least a quarter.
Either Ohio had a severe drop in talent over the offseason, or Louisville's defense took its cue from the offense and became elite overnight. With Hakeem Smith on that defense, the latter is the more credible explanation.
Teddy Bridgewater could win every game on the schedule by himself, but his defense has decided that won't be necessary.
Average Rank: 11.6
Oklahoma State squashed Mississippi State last week, becoming the second non-SEC team in a row to do so. The other team was Northwestern in the 2013 Gator Bowl, for those of you keeping anti-SEC counts.
The Cowboys proved that they can hang with an upper-middle-class team from the nation's strongest conference. That's more than good enough for a spot in the Top 25. (Jeff Sagarin has them power ranked at No. 2.)
Average Rank: 11.4
Florida State's Jameis Winston did not have a Heisman moment against Pittsburgh in Week 1—he had a complete Heisman performance. He went 25-of-27 for 356 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Just to prove that he's not a one-trick pony, he tacked on eight carries for 25 yards and another score as well. He's not a true dual-threat QB, but he's got the most lethal combination of legs and arm strength in college football. (We're looking at you, Johnny Manziel.)
Average Rank: 11.2
The Florida Gators had a non-headline-making, but still noteworthy, win against the Toledo Rockets in Week 1. The Gators won 24-6, and Toledo was a nine-win team in 2012. Florida managed to keep the Rockets' tandem of Terrance Owens (QB) and David Fluellen (RB) to zero touchdowns and two field goals on the night.
In Week 2, the Gators take on Miami in a beautiful matchup that will feature all of Florida's suspended starters back from the doghouse.
Average Rank: 9.2
Georgia exhibited a susceptibility to a pass rush against Clemson in Week 1, and it cost the Bulldogs the game. Yes, the bad snap cost them the game, too, but Aaron "3rd-and-22" Murray's offensive line certainly didn't help matters much.
Georgia plays South Carolina in a Week 2 bout that can both redeem the Bulldogs and condemn the SEC East in one fell swoop. (Racking up one-loss teams as early as September is a recipe for zero SEC teams in the BCS title game.)
Average Rank: 8.6
LSU beat TCU by 10 points in the second-best game of opening weekend, and the Tigers looked surprisingly complete. From all perspectives, they looked like a Les Miles-coached team worthy of respect as a title contender.
Sure, there were some rough edges, but a solid win over a ranked team is mildly reminiscent of 2011. LSU deserves a spot near the top, and its schedule will provide all the opportunities necessary to move into the BCS picture.
Average Rank: 6.8
Texas A&M took Rice down 52-31 in the season opener that was Johnny Manziel-less until after halftime. (And for a few more minutes later in the game, as Manziel's responses to Owl chatter were apparently frowned upon in that establishment.)
The Aggies are still riding some of the fame from the win over Alabama in 2012, but they will gel soon, and the hype will be confirmed or refuted in Week 3 against...you guessed it, the Crimson Tide.
Average Rank: 6.6
South Carolina and Georgia meet after two completely different experiences against ACC teams in Week 1. (South Carolina won its game against North Carolina.) As we covered in the Georgia slide, the Bulldogs have issues with a strong pass rush.
As much bad press as Jadeveon Clowney's getting for his "poor" performance against UNC, the bottom line is that UNC directed as many offensive plays as possible 180 degrees away from the monster lineman.
If the Gamecocks have one thing, it is an intimidating pass rush. Georgia had better be on its toes, or it could be the reason that South Carolina moves within striking distance of the national championship.
Average Rank: 6
Clemson scored the best win of opening weekend over then-No. 5 Georgia. The Tigers manhandled the Bulldogs offensive line in a display that can only be correctly identified as clearly Top Five material.
The Tigers host South Carolina State on Sept. 7, and that will be an easy place-holding win for the ACC power. Though any team could upset them along the way, they have only three marquee games between them and a national championship berth: Florida State, South Carolina and the ACC title game.
Average Rank: 4.4
Ohio State was sitting pretty at No. 2 before the final score of the Buffalo game was broadcast around the country. That 40-20 victory led some to believe that the Buckeyes may not make it through the Big Ten unscathed.
While that is absolutely a concern, the Bulls had all summer to do nothing but watch tape and reminisce about how they hung with Georgia for quite a while back in 2012. Ohio State clearly has leaks to plug in the ship, but the Buckeyes are far from out of the race.
Average Rank: 4
Stanford moved down in the AP Poll when it didn't even play a game. While there is a hint of unfairness in that event, the Cardinal will have the opportunity to fix everything in their season opener with a big win over David Fales and the San Jose State Spartans.
Stanford is a powerhouse in the Pac-12, and defense is the key in that particular program. If the Cardinal can get a quarterback to rise up and meet the extended challenge, an undefeated season is far from impossible.
Average Rank: 3.6
Oregon dominated the Nicholls State Colonels, and the week of FCS upsets (and Ohio state's "performance" against Buffalo) fueled the Ducks' move to No. 2 in the AP Poll.
While it was against inferior competition, Oregon's offense looked almost exactly like it did last season. The defense also did an excellent job alleviating concerns that Chip Kelly might have been the linchpin the program couldn't do without.
The final score was 66-3 in favor of the Ducks, and they moved into the No. 2 spot in the power rankings as well.
Average Rank: 1
Alabama may have looked rusty against Virginia Tech, but the Hokies defense was so incredible that people just left Alabama alone. The 35-10 victory was solid, even if the offensive line wasn't.
Not to mention that this sentence will travel the airwaves in 2013 and make sense: "Alabama's special teams unit could be the best in the country." Alabama will remain here in the No. 1 spot through its bye week, and the "12th-Man" jury will cast its verdict at Kyle Field in Week 3.