NCAA Football Rankings 2013: Hits and Misses from Week 12

Randy ChambersAnalyst INovember 10, 2013

NCAA Football Rankings 2013: Hits and Misses from Week 12

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    Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

    It's that time of year where college football upsets take place each week and the polls experience a drastic change. Ah, don't you love this sport? Week 11 featured six ranked teams that lost, so you knew both the Associated Press and USA Today coaches polls would be controversial.

    Some will question why a certain team is ranked so high, others will wonder why another ranking is so low and fans of an unranked team will continue to pound the drum for more respect. It's just another week in the life of a college football fan.

    This week, Wisconsin continues to get disrespected, Miami deserves the biggest fall of all and we say hello to a familiar face.

    Note: Here are the AP poll and the USA Today coaches poll in their entirety.

Miss: LSU

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    John David Mercer-USA TODAY Spor

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 12; AP, No. 10

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 18

    Current AP Poll: No. 18

    Overall Record: 7-3

    Yes, I know the Tigers have three losses on the year, but let's put them on a neutral field against your favorite team and see what happens. Assuming your team isn't Alabama or Florida State, they'll have a terrific shot of pulling out a victory.

    LSU would have given the Crimson Tide a run for their money if it weren't for mistakes in the first half. It would have also beaten the Georgia Bulldogs (when they were good) if there was more time on the clock. This is a team that should not be ranked behind Oklahoma in the coaches poll or behind Fresno State in either poll.

    Three losses or not, LSU should still be respected.

Hit: Michigan State

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    Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 19; AP, No. 18

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 16

    Current AP Poll: No. 14

    Overall Record: 8-1

    Michigan State finally makes a fairly big leap in both polls after a bye week. You got that right. Wins over Michigan and the rest of the Big Ten don't matter much to voters. Take the week off, though, and you'll shoot up the rankings by three or four spots.

    I'm sure the Spartans will take it however it comes. Currently the leader in the Big Ten Legends division, Michigan State has looked terrific with an elite defense and a running game that averages 190 yards per game.

    Michigan State will be given a fair shot to qualify for a BCS bowl.

Miss: Stanford

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    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 6; AP, No. 6

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 5

    Current AP Poll: No. 5

    Overall Record: 8-1

    Are voters switching their love for one explosive offense for another? Oregon proved to be a fraud, so we'll go ahead and take a chance on Baylor.

    The Ducks were considered a national championship contender and looked unbeatable to most. Stanford punched them in the mouth and held them scoreless until the fourth quarter. That impressive win was only good for one spot in the polls?

    Either folks aren't sold on Stanford, or the love for Oregon was really fickle.

    Stanford should be at least one spot higher in both polls.

Hit: Miami

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    Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 14; AP, No. 14

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 23

    Current AP Poll: No. 24

    Overall Record: 7-2

    Even Miami fans can't argue with where their team is ranked. The Hurricanes have struggled over the last month and have now lost two straight games that weren't even close. You could even make a case that this isn't a team that deserves to be in the rankings.

    Miami looks vulnerable on both sides of the ball.

    It's great to see that bias has not played a part in this ranking. Forget the status and history with this program. If the team isn't good, it isn't good. This massive fall in both polls is well deserved.

Miss: Wisconsin in the Coaches Poll

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    Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 22; AP, No. 21

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 20

    Current AP Poll: No. 17

    Overall Record: 7-2

    It's clear nothing Wisconsin does the rest of this season will be good enough for the coaches. The Badgers could schedule the Crimson Tide at the last second, shut them out and probably drop down a couple of spots.


    Wisconsin has now won four straight games, including a 10-point victory over an above-average BYU team. The defense continues to prove it's one of the better units in the country, and the offense is as physical as it gets.

    Why the Badgers aren't ranked inside the Top 20 by the coaches is beyond me.

Hit: Texas

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    Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, N/R; AP, N/R

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 24

    Current AP Poll: No. 23

    Overall Record: 7-2

    You knew it was only a matter of time before Texas sneaked back into the polls.

    Hey, the Longhorns have put a winning streak together—let's throw them in polls so they'll have an outside shot at a BCS bowl!

    In all seriousness, Texas has won six straight games and is currently first in the Big 12. Nope, this is not a joke. The program appears to be back on top, and the hot seat talk has died down for Mack Brown.

    Of course, this could all change any given week, but for now Texas is a Top 25 team and deserves its ranking.

Miss: Louisville in the Coaches Poll

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    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 16; AP, No. 20

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 13

    Current AP Poll: No. 19

    Overall Record: 8-1

    I'm lost for words.

    Louisville climbs three spots in the coaches poll after a win over Connecticut. Uh, this isn't basketball. The Cardinals might as well have played a random high school.

    What's even crazier about this ranking is that they are six spots ahead of UCF. Yes, the same team that beat them pretty convincingly a few weeks ago.

    It's not adding up.

    Let go of the love for Teddy Bridgewater and rank the team on its true merits.

Hit: Minnesota

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    Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, N/R; AP, N/R

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 25

    Current AP Poll: N/R

    Overall Record: 8-2

    The AP voters still need to get with the program, but it's nice to see Minnesota get some major love from the coaches.

    While you've been giving all the attention to Ohio State or ignoring the Big Ten altogether, Minnesota has won four straight games, including victories over Northwestern, Nebraska and now Penn State. Don't look now, but the Golden Gophers are sitting pretty with an 8-2 record.

    The defense is legit, and the offense is improving its consistency each week. Minnesota is no longer a team that you should glance over on your college football weekend.

Miss: Georgia

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    Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, N/R; AP, N/R

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: N/R

    Current AP Poll: No. 25

    Overall Record: 6-3

    Georgia was unranked in both polls last week and is now ranked after a win over Appalachian State. Somebody must not have told the voters that this isn't the same program that upset Michigan a few years ago.

    If any other team in the country knocked off the mighty Mountaineers, it wouldn't have received any attention from voters. Because it's the Bulldogs, they find a way to crack the Top 25. Georgia has the worst record of any ranked team.

    Biased much?

Hit: Florida State

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    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    Ranking Last Week: USA Today, No. 3; AP, No. 3

    Current USA Today Coaches Poll: No. 2

    Current AP Poll: No. 2

    Overall Record: 9-0

    While Florida State checks in at No. 2 in both polls, it is the only team besides Alabama that has received first-place votes. The Seminoles earned three first-place votes in the AP poll and four in the coaches poll.

    You could make a case that they deserve to be the top team in the country. Both sides of the ball have played at an elite level all season, and there hasn't been one game they have come close to losing. Picking between the Tide and Seminoles as the top team is like trying to decide which Lamborghini is nicer.

    Still, it's nice to see Florida State get serious consideration for the top spot, especially with Alabama beating a quality opponent in LSU.