NCAA Football Rankings 2013: Winners and Losers from Week 7
With their 63-0 annihilation of a ranked ACC foe in Maryland, the Florida State Seminoles officially entered the BCS title conversation when they moved to No. 6 in both of the Week 7 rankings.
While the 'Noles were the major winner, another ACC contender entered the rankings and the race for the league title.
Meanwhile, Baylor also clobbered a conference opponent, West Virginia, but didn't earn the same respect that FSU did.
On the other hand, voters rewarded Washington for taking its Top Five test, Stanford, to the limit on the road.
We'll break down the situation surrounding the Huskies, Bears, Seminoles and the rest of the winners and losers in the Week 7 polls.
Winner: Florida State
Florida State was previously on the fringe, but now the Seminoles are firmly in the national title conversation after their 63-0 thrashing of Maryland.
With the win, FSU is now stacked up in the No. 3-6 logjam.
With Alabama and Oregon as the clear top two, Ohio State, Clemson, Stanford and FSU are all vying for their position as the next teams up.
With quarterback Jameis Winston playing out of his mind, the Seminoles will have a chance to take over and make a major jump in two weeks when they travel to Clemson.
On Oct. 19, it will be Florida State vs. Clemson for ACC and BCS title consideration. The Heisman Trophy race will also be shaped in that game when Winston squares off with CU's Tajh Boyd.
What does a team have to do to earn some real respect around here?
Baylor put together one of the best offensive performances in college football history, amassing a stupid 864 total yards in a 73-42 win over West Virginia.
The Bears defense was much better than the final score showed, as WVU scored 21 of its points against the BU reserves in the fourth quarter.
Statistically, no team, even Oregon, has matched the Bears this season. BU has averaged 780 yards and 70.5 points per game. Meanwhile, its speedy defense has allowed just 321 yards per contest.
Still, BU barely even cracked the Top 15. It's impossible to argue for any team other than the Bears as the Big 12 title favorite. Unfortunately, a 12-0 Baylor team will be left on the outside looking in at the BCS title conversation at this rate.
All the Bears can do is just keep doing their thing, which has been ridiculous thus far.
While voters in both polls seemed to ignore Baylor's utter dominance, many of them apparently stayed up to watch Washington give Stanford all it could handle.
The Huskies proved to be legit on both sides of the ball, disproving the notion that they're a two-man team.
Of course, those two men, quarterback Keith Price and running back Bishop Sankey, did their part in the narrow 31-28 road loss. However, the UW defense was most impressive, stopping Stanford cold in the fourth quarter to give its offense a shot at the comeback.
Unfortunately, the Huskies came up just inches short of that comeback try, as their fourth-down conversion was ruled an incompletion late in the final frame to seal Stanford's victory.
With UW looking strong, Oregon had better watch out this week. The Huskies will host the Ducks this Saturday at 4 p.m. EDT on Fox Sports 1, and ESPN's College GameDay will be in town.
Can they pull off their upset bid this time around?
Georgia notched a nerve-racking road victory in SEC play despite the absence of nearly all of its offensive playmakers.
The Bulldogs kicked a field goal in overtime to edge Tennessee 34-31 and needed a clutch touchdown drive and game-tying score from quarterback Aaron Murray with five seconds left on the clock to even make it that far.
However, an explosion from Florida State saw the Seminoles jump the Dawgs.
Though UGA dropped, it is still clearly the top one-loss team and will have plenty of time to climb as teams drop in front of it.
To make it to that point, though, the Bulldogs need to get healthy.
Winner: Virginia Tech
Early in the season, Virginia Tech didn't look anything like a Top 25 team. When the Hokies lost decisively to Alabama and struggled with East Carolina and Marshall, they looked like a team incapable of competing in the ACC.
However, VT has made a quick turnaround and is now 2-0 in ACC play with wins over Georgia Tech and North Carolina.
All of a sudden, the Hokies look to be neck-and-neck with Miami (Fla.) in the ACC Coastal Division and will play the Hurricanes on Nov. 9 in what could be the de facto Coastal championship game.
If they keep improving, they could even play BCS title spoiler in the league title game against either Clemson or Florida State.
Loser: Notre Dame
While voters conveniently played the who-beat-whom game with several teams inside the polls, they ignored that logic with Notre Dame.
The AP poll in particular slid Missouri, Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois into the Top 25 but kept ND out after its win over a ranked Arizona State squad.
The Irish have two losses to ranked Oklahoma and Michigan teams. Two of their wins came against the Sun Devils and Michigan State, which is just outside of the rankings and leads the nation in total defense.
Meanwhile, Missouri's biggest win came this week against Vanderbilt, which is 0-3 in SEC play.
ND won't be able to add to its resume for another week. With a Week 7 bye, the Irish will return against rival USC on Oct. 19.
Winner: South Carolina
South Carolina looked mediocre once again in a 35-28 win over Kentucky.
Still, the Gamecocks held strong, at least in the coaches poll, where they remained at No. 12 ahead of notable undefeated teams UCLA, Baylor, Miami and Michigan.
None of USC's last three wins, over Vanderbilt, UCF and UK, came by more than 10 points. While the Cocks continue to win, their style points remain at zero.
Going forward, their win-close trend will be tested as they take to the road for three straight weeks against Arkansas, Tennessee and Missouri.
Loser: USA Today Coaches Poll
The USA Today coaches poll comes out every week to much anticipation from college football fans and writers.
But this week, the pollsters had an embarrassing gaffe.
When the poll was released, Ohio State and Clemson were listed at a tie for No. 3, with 1,356 poll points apiece.
Shortly after the release the paper tweeted a correction, saying that OSU is actually No. 3 and Clemson still No. 4. The tweet included a link to a supposedly corrected poll, but it wasn't corrected.
Nearly two hours after its release, the online poll still hadn't been corrected and also didn't include the other teams that received votes.
You can do better, USA Today.