The third edition of the 2013 BCS rankings was released Sunday evening, and the most notable development is Florida State's rise to No. 2—past Oregon and just behind the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide.
A 41-14 rout of the ACC archrival Miami (FL) Hurricanes proved to be enough to vault the Seminoles into the coveted slot, while Oregon was unable to enhance its case due to a bye week.
Two other teams made notable moves and still have outside chances at conference championships and BCS bids as a result.
Following a complete listing of the new Top 25 is a closer look at how those programs fared in their most recent games, as well as their outlooks for Week 11 and beyond.
No. 2 Florida State
Who is the best team in college football at the moment?
Let the debate rage about who would win a prospective showdown between the Seminoles and Oregon, but, at least for this week, FSU reigns superior in the rankings that matter most.
After a turbulent beginning to the Hurricanes game that featured two uncharacteristic interceptions thrown by freshman phenom Jameis Winston, the Seminoles roared back with 27 unanswered points to close out Miami in dominant fashion.
Winston may not have done himself any favors in the Heisman Trophy race, but his efficiency and turnover-free second half helped keep Florida State on track.
Bleacher Report's Mike Freeman goes as far as suggesting that the Seminoles are the best team in the country—superior to even Alabama:
Am I crazy to think Florida State is the best team in the country? That they have the athleticism to beat 'Bama?— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) November 3, 2013
The chances of the Seminoles going undefeated is rather high—at least in the regular season, as they won't face an opponent with a current winning record the rest of the way.
That will change in the conference championship game, but it also may hurt Florida State's strength of schedule enough to be leapfrogged by Oregon for the No. 2 spot, assuming the Ducks win out.
No. 12 South Carolina
A move from 14th to 12th isn't huge, but it's a step in the right direction.
The departures of Marcus Lattimore and Kenny Miles have not led to a letdown in the Gamecocks rushing attack, thanks to the brilliant play of Mike Davis.
Quarterback Connor Shaw did throw four touchdowns in Saturday's rout of SEC foe Mississippi State in Columbia, but Davis turned in yet another stellar performance with 128 yards on 15 carries and two catches for 26 more yards.
In only two games this season has Davis failed to reach the 100-yard mark, as the sophomore has already piled up 1058 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns to go with 29 receptions on 11.2 yards per catch.
South Carolina's Mike Davis: "Going over 1,000 yards means a lot. I am proud of myself."— Josh Kendall (@JoshatTheState) November 2, 2013
Failing to mention South Carolina's improving defense would be disrespectful, though. Defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and the entire unit have upped their play after a lackluster start to the year, yielding an average of 17.5 points in the past four games.
What's most impressive is that the Gamecocks had no letdown from a double-overtime road win over Missouri in the previous week and took care of business with a resounding 34-16 win over the Bulldogs.
Thanks to the win over Mizzou, taking the SEC East is still a possibility, and doing that would pit South Carolina against Alabama in the conference championship.
A home clash with Clemson in the regular-season finale is the Gamecocks' biggest threat to lose again, but until then, it should be smooth sailing for Steve Spurrier's team.
No. 17 Michigan State
The Spartans play stupendous defense and rank third in the country in giving up just 11.6 points per contest. That stoutness was on display in a 29-6 thumping of the Michigan Wolverines in East Lansing.
Michigan managed to convert only two of 14 third-down situations and rushed for minus-48 yards. No, that isn't a misprint; it's a testament to how Sparty swarmed Wolverines quarterback Devin Gardner.
Star basketball alum Magic Johnson was effusive in his praise after the glorious triumph:
My Spartans crushed rival Michigan 29-6. Our #1 ranked defense was as advertised! #GoGreen— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) November 2, 2013
Having allowed nine points total over the past three games, it's hard to imagine much slippage for the Spartans in the BCS standings. Their Week 10 performance was rewarded with a five-spot move upward.
Two road games at Nebraska and Northwestern embody the Spartans' impending schedule, but the home clash with Minnesota to wrap up the season shouldn't be too difficult.
None of those teams is ranked, and if Michigan State can make it through unscathed, a date with the Ohio State Buckeyes likely awaits in the Big Ten championship. That is where Sparty could jump on a BCS bid.