College Football Rankings: Teams Needing Bounce-Back Performances in Week 2

Ryan DavenportContributor ISeptember 6, 2013

Aug 31, 2013; Clemson, SC, USA; Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Aaron Murray (11) prior to the snap during the first quarter against the Clemson Tigers at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

The first week of the 2013 college football season presented us with a number of intriguing clashes, and, not surprisingly, a handful of teams tumbled in the rankings following disappointing debut performances. 

Yes, the vast majority of the game's heavyweights came out swinging during their respective season openers, but there were certainly some exceptions. 

Every team in NCAA Division I football has more than ample time to make up for early shortcomings, but for teams looking to earn a berth in a BCS Championship Series, starting the year off on a sour note makes earning a favorable spot in the rankings by season's end that much more difficult. 

Heading into the second weekend of the season's slate of games, here's a look at the teams that will be looking to bounce back after stumbling out of the gates. 



No, the now-No. 11 Georgia Bulldogs' opening-weekend loss to Clemson isn't the end of the world, but it certainly was a step in the wrong direction for a team that began the season with hopes of taking home the school's first national title since 1980. 

Mark Richt's boys didn't play a particularly bad game against Clemson, but this team will have to be better during their upcoming home-opener against No. 6 South Carolina.

Aaron Murray, who is viewed by many to be a leading contender for the Heisman, will have his hands full with Jadeveon Clowney and the Gamecocks' defense, and if he's going to lead Georgia back into the Top 10, he'll have to have a big day against Steve Spurrier's squad. 

For now, the Bulldogs' No. 11 AP ranking has as much to do with the team's potential as it does their performance, even though the loss to Clemson was a tightly-contested affair. 

This weekend, the pressure will be on Georgia to rebound in a big way, because otherwise, this team's national title hopes will be dashed very early on. 



The Horned Frogs' loss to No. 12 LSU wasn't a shocker, but the way in which they lost was certainly not an encouraging sign for TCU fans. 

Ultimately, it was only a 10-point loss to a legitimate national title contender, but the game's outcome wasn't really in question by the time the fourth quarter rolled around. 

That's because TCU spotted the Tigers a 13-point lead with less than three minutes to play in the third quarter, and Les Miles' group never looked back. 

For TCU, the loss to Zach Mettenberger and company stings not only because it was at home, but also because it may have been the team's best opportunity to climb into the Top 10 this season, as the Horned Frogs don't have another game on their schedule against a team currently ranked higher than the Tigers. 

Looking ahead to this weekend's game against Southeastern Louisiana, TCU should get back to .500 rather easily, but what's almost just as important as getting a victory is determining who will get the keys to the offense as the team's starting quarterback permanently. 



It's easy to say that USC did what they were supposed to do during Week 1, as the Trojans emerged with a 17-point victory over Hawaii. 

But for Lane Kiffin's team, the 30-13 win was a less than impressive performance, even if it was on the road. 

Now in his fourth season as head coach of a storied program, Kiffin needs to produce results, and at least on one side of the ball, the Trojans did not meet expectations. 

Defensively, the No. 25 Trojans were stellar, hauling in four interceptions, but as great as USC was at that end of the stadium, they were just as bad when the offense took the field. 

Aside from committing two turnovers, the offense was stagnant at times, and though they managed to find the end zone three times, the lack of stability at quarterback is a major concern. 

With Pac-12 rival Washington State on tap, Kiffin's bunch will have to be much better in order to remain a Top 25 team come Monday. 


*Team rankings are based on the Week 2 AP Top 25 poll, via