LSU vs. Georgia: How Tigers' Loss Will Impact AP Rankings

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistSeptember 28, 2013

BATON ROUGE, LA - SEPTEMBER 21:  Zach Mettenberger #8 of the LSU Tigers looks to throw a pass against the Auburn Tigers at Tiger Stadium on September 21, 2013 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

In one of the most exciting games of the college football season, Georgia outlasted LSU at home by a score of 44-41. Unsurprisingly, this result will have a big impact on the rankings.

Georgia already lost to Clemson to start the year, and a second defeat would likely have knocked the team out of the national championship picture. However, a four-touchdown performance by Aaron Murray helped the Bulldogs remain in the hunt. Georgia improved to 3-1 on the year. 

No team in the nation has had a tougher start to the year than the Bulldogs. A three-point loss on the road in the opener is little to be ashamed of, and the squad now has two wins over teams ranked No. 6 at the time.

These quality performances should keep the school as the highest-ranked team with a loss and ahead of most undefeated teams.

After starting the day at No. 9, Georgia will obviously move above current No. 6 LSU. Florida State was No. 8, but were unimpressive in a 48-34 win over Boston College and should be passed.

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 28: Head Coach Mark Richt of the Georgia Bulldogs celebrates after the game against the LSU Tigers at Sanford Stadium on September 28, 2013 in Athens, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Depending on how inspired voters are from the win, the Bulldogs might even be able to pass Louisville, who were idle on Saturday. This would put Georgia at No. 6 in the country, although No. 7 seems more likely.

As for LSU, recovering will be tougher without a strong resume to start the year. The win over TCU looks less impressive than it did a month ago, and last week's victory over Auburn was not any better.

The Tigers are looking at a similar drop to South Carolina's after losing to Georgia. The squad went from No. 6 to No. 13 after the loss, a good example for LSU. 

One redeeming factor is that No. 11 Oklahoma State lost earlier in the day and will drop, while No. 12 South Carolina had an uninspiring win over UCF. The only team that should really climb is No. 14 Oklahoma, who dominated Notre Dame on the road.

This should keep the Bayou Bengals at No. 11 at the lowest. With a long season, this should be enough to keep them in contention for this year's national championship.

The final team that this game affects is Clemson. While the squad was already No. 3, Georgia's solid play proves that the Tigers should not be passed by Ohio State or anyone else until they lose.

BATON ROUGE, LA - SEPTEMBER 07:  Les Miles, head coach of the LSU Tigers, reacts to a play during a game against the UAB Blazers at Tiger Stadium on September 7, 2013 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Stacy Revere/Getty Images

 

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