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College Football Rankings 2014: Updated Outlook Before Week 2 Polls

COLUMBIA, SC - AUGUST 28:  Kenny Hill #7 of the Texas A&M Aggies flashes a thumbs-up as he leave the field afte a win over the South Carolina Gamecocks at Williams-Brice Stadium on August 28, 2014 in Columbia, South Carolina. Texas A&M won 52-28.  (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Grant Halverson/Getty Images
Andrew GouldFeatured ColumnistSeptember 1, 2014

The opening week of the 2014 college football season proved well worth the wait. With the weekly ritual of football back in our lives, so follows the release of those pesky polls to tell us how the top schools stack up.

Offenses ran wild in an opening week full of shootouts and blowouts. A select few defenses even showed up to play, but every team ranked in the preseason AP poll scored at least 20 points during their first contests of the new season.

After an eventful Week 1, especially out in the SEC, how will the rankings shake up for Week 2? Let's take a look at how they might unfold.

Projected Week 2 AP Poll
TeamPrevious RankWeek 1 Result
1. Florida State1def. Oklahoma State, 37-31
2. Oregon3def. South Dakota, 62-13
3. Alabama2def. West Virginia, 33-23
4. Oklahoma4def. Louisiana Tech, 48-16
5. Auburn6def. Arkansas, 45-21
6. Michigan State8def. Jacksonville State, 45-7
7. Baylor10def. SMU, 45-0
8. Georgia12def. Clemson, 45-21
9. Stanford11def. UC-Davis, 45-0
10. Ohio State5def. Navy, 34-17
11. LSU13def. Wisconsin, 28-24
12. UCLA7def. Virginia, 28-20
13. Texas A&M21def. South Carolina, 52-28
14. USC15def. Fresno State, 52-13
15. Notre Dame17def. Rice, 48-17
16. Ole Miss18def. Boise State, 35-13
17. Arizona State19def. Weber State, 45-14
18. Kansas State20def. Stephen F. Austin, 55-16
19. Nebraska21def. Florida Atlantic, 55-7
20. Wisconsin14loss vs. LSU, 28-24
21. South Carolina9loss vs. Texas A&M, 52-28
22. Clemson16loss vs. Georgia, 45-21
23. North Carolina23def. Liberty, 56-29
24. Missouri24def. South Dakota State, 38-18
25. TexasNRdef. North Texas, 38-7
Projected rankings are author's personal predictions; current rankings via AP.org.

 

Stock Up/Down:

Up: Texas A&M

With a huge performance in his first start, Kenny Hill has the Aggies primed for a seismic climb up the rankings.

The sophomore quarterback amassed 511 passing yards and three touchdowns during a scintillating debut against South Carolina, which entered the SEC clash with a No. 9 preseason ranking. As shown by ESPN's Numbers Never Lie, he already eclipsed many of predecessor Johnny Manziel's personal bests.

Five different Texas A&M wideouts registered at least 55 receiving yards, with Malcome Kennedy's 137 yards leading the way. The Aggies finished Thursday night's stampede with a 52-28 victory that should spring Kevin Sumlin's squad up a few spots.

Although the secondary showed some holes amid Dylan Thompson's 366 passing yards and four touchdowns, the Aggies' offense steamrolled an early SEC favorite, which is good enough to place them comfortably in the teens.

 

Down: South Carolina

COLUMBIA, SC - AUGUST 28: T.J. Gurley #20 of the South Carolina Gamecocks tackles Sabian Holmes #23 of the Texas A&M Aggies during their game at Williams-Brice Stadium on August 28, 2014 in Columbia, South Carolina. Texas A&M won 52-28. (Photo by Grant Ha
Grant Halverson/Getty Images

On the other end of the shocking SEC rout, South Carolina must suffer the consequences for Hill's coming-out party.

The Gamecocks allowed an unconscionable 680 total yards during the loss, a rare humiliation for decorated coach Steve Spurrier. ESPN Stats & Info piled on with some interesting tidbits regarding the coach's rough night.

As expected, he was livid with his team's defensive performance, per NBC 26's Brendan Robertson:

Their schedule doesn't get particularly easier, either. This Saturday they'll play the East Carolina Pirates, who opened the season with a 52-7 victory over North Carolina Central. Then it's on to No. 12 Georgia, which will likely vault into the Top 10 after thrashing Clemson last weekend.

Missouri is waiting at the end of September, and don't forget about Auburn to close out October. South Carolina has a rough road to redemption after its disappointing start to 2014.

 

Up: Texas

AUSTIN, TX - AUGUST 30:  Texas Longhorns head coach Charlie Strong looks on against the North Texas Mean Green on August 30, 2014 at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

No. 25 Washington didn't quite shine during a 17-16 victory over Hawaii. Afforded no wiggle room perched in the final spot, the Huskies should get expelled from the AP Top 25.

Expect Texas, which looked much better in a 38-7 win over North Texas, to reap the rewards.

In Charlie Strong's coaching debut with the Longhorns, the passing defense declared a full embargo on anything through the air. Texas' secondary caught more passes from North Texas' quarterbacks than its own receivers, collecting four interceptions to just three completed passes.

North Texas Quarterbacks vs. Texas (8/30)
PlayerComp./Attp.YardsTDINT
Josh Greer2/11802
Andrew McNulty1/6702
ESPN.com

The Mean Green finished with 94 total yards, which made a humdrum offensive outing from the Longhorns (354 total yards) more than enough. Considering Texas started the season placed No. 24 in both the USA Today poll and ESPN Power Rankings, this victory should provide the nudge needed to gain AP inclusion.

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