After rolling through USC in dominant fashion, the Alabama Crimson Tide maintained their spot atop the Associated Press' college football poll Tuesday.
As seen in this rundown of the Week 2 rankings, courtesy of the AP Top 25 Poll's official website, Bama is comfortably ahead of No. 2 Clemson after the opening week of play:
|AP College Football Week 2 Rankings|
The Tide fell behind the Trojans, 3-0, only to go on a 52-3 run the rest of the way in one of the week's most impressive victories.
Several big-name schools struggled, but as the AP's Ralph D. Russo pointed out, there are no concerns when it comes to the Tide:
Ralph D. Russo @ralphDrussoAP
We are about 40 hours into the first weekend of college football and one thing we know for sure is everyone is terrible. Except Alabama.2016-9-4 02:00:30
That is due largely to the play of freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts, who accounted for two passing touchdowns and two rushing scores and made his case to be Jake Coker's replacement.
Quarterback was the biggest question mark for Alabama entering the season, but Bleacher Report's Matt Hayes believes head coach Nick Saban has found his answer:
Matt Hayes @MattHayesCFB
Jalen Hurts is the worst thing to happen this weekend to every team not named Alabama. #RollTideRoll2016-9-4 13:32:01
Alabama's win jumped off the page since it was against a USC team that was ranked 20th entering the season, but a couple of other highly touted squads, Michigan and Ohio State, improved their rankings with wins over cupcake opponents.
However, as noted by Landof10.com's Brandon Justice, decisive victories were scarce for elite programs in Week 1:
Brandon Justice @LandOfJustice
Of all the top 10 teams in the AP top 25, only three of those teams won by more than two possessions: Alabama, Ohio State and Michigan.2016-9-5 04:04:30
Multiple Top 10 teams learned that the hard way, as Oklahoma, LSU and Notre Dame lost to Houston, Wisconsin and Texas, respectively, which resulted in sharp drops in the rankings for the defeated sides.
Both the Badgers and Longhorns found their way into the Top 25 at No. 10 and No. 11, respectively, after being left out of the initial rankings, while the Cougars took a big leap from No. 15 to No. 6.
Houston looked like a dangerous team heading into 2016 after beating Florida State by two scores in the Peach Bowl last season. Quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate Greg Ward Jr. continued his stellar play against Oklahoma and has the Cougars looking like College Football Playoff contenders.
While many of the top teams that lost in Week 1 didn't perform well, Skip Bayless of Fox Sports 1 thought the Sooners' loss was more a case of their running into a great team:
Skip Bayless @RealSkipBayless
A very good Oklahoma team just lost to an amazingly good Houston team that was just a little better today. Houston: legit playoff contender2016-9-3 19:37:25
One squad that played nowhere near its potential in Week 1 but was still fortunate enough to escape with a victory was Clemson.
The Tigers picked up a 19-13 road win over Auburn despite superstar quarterback Deshaun Watson's single passing touchdown.
Auburn had a chance to win the game with a Hail Mary attempt in the closing seconds but failed. The win wasn't pretty, but ESPN's Danny Kanell gave Clemson credit for avoiding the upset:
Danny Kanell @dannykanell
wow. Clemson did everything to try and hand that game over. so tentative. Ugly win. But the win is all that matters2016-9-4 04:36:48
The opening week of the 2016 college football season was among the most unpredictable in recent memory, but there is nothing unexpected about Alabama's spot in the sport's pecking order, as the Tide look like a good bet to grab another CFP berth.
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