A major upset on Friday night paved way for the typical mayhem on Saturday in Week 5 of the 2017 college football season, surely setting up the Top 25 for some big changes as the season rumbles to the midway point.
No. 16 Washington State pulled off a 30-27 stunner against No. 5 USC to put a damper on the Trojans' playoff hopes while putting themselves in dark-horse contention for college football's top postseason competition.
Sunday will see the release of the latest Top 25 poll, but for now, let's take a look at the latest standings based on the Associated Press rankings from Week 5.
Week 6 Standings Week 5 Result
1. Alabama (5-0) W, 66-3 vs. Ole Miss
2. Clemson (5-0) W, 31-17 at Virginia Tech.
3. Oklahoma (4-0) did not play
4. Penn State (5-0) W, 45-14 vs. Indiana
5. USC (4-1) L, 27-30 at Wash St.
6. Washington (5-0) W, 42-7 at Oregon St.
7. Georgia (5-0) W, 41-0 at Tennessee
8. Michigan (4-0) did not play
9. TCU (4-0) did not play
10. Wisconsin (4-0) W, 33-24 vs. Northwestern
11. Ohio State (4-1) W, 56-0 at Rutgers
12. Virginia Tech (4-1) L, 17-31 vs. Clemson
13. Auburn (4-1) W, 49-10 vs. Miss St.
14. Miami (3-0) W, 31-6 at Duke
15. Oklahoma State (4-1) W, 41-34 at Texas Tech
16. Washington State (5-0) W 30-27 vs. USC
17. Louisville (4-1) W, 55-10 vs. Murray St.
18. South Florida (5-0) W, 61-31 at East Carolina
19. San Diego State (5-0) W, 34-28 vs. Northern Illinois
20. Utah (4-0) did not play
21. Florida (3-1) W, 38-24 vs. Vanderbilt
22. Notre Dame (4-1) W, 52-17 vs. Miami (OH)
23. West Virginia (3-1) did not play
24. Mississippi State (3-2) L, 10-49 at Auburn
25. LSU (3-2) L, 21-24 vs. Troy
Washington State will likely leapfrog USC in the next poll or at the very least converge somewhere around the No. 9 spot after the Cougars' thrilling home win in Pullman. One place where the rankings should absolutely flip is in Heisman consideration, as Cougars signal-caller Luke Falk should be considered a favorite over USC quarterback Sam Darnold.
Falk was excellent against the Trojans, throwing two touchdowns against one interception and bringing his season totals to 16 and two in those respective categories. The senior quarterback commented on the program's massive win, per 710 ESPN Seattle's Jessamyn McIntyre:
Jessamyn McIntyre @JessamynMcIntyr
Luke Falk: "These are once in a lifetime moments. It was a gutsy win."2017-9-30 06:49:35
Darnold had a tough night playing behind a banged-up offensive line, completing 15 of 29 passes for no touchdowns and one interception.
Darnold has been a good quarterback for much of his time this season, but defenses are capitalizing on his mistakes, while Falk manages to keep his game mostly free of turnovers and game-changing errors.
Clemson might chip away a bit at Alabama's hold on the No. 1 spot, but it's hard to see the Crimson Tide relinquishing their spot after a 66-3 drubbing of Ole Miss.
Eight different Alabama players carried the ball against the Rebels, with five of them finding the end zone. The defense was just as relentlessly punishing, forcing three fumbles, coming up with five sacks and notching two picks, both of them by senior Levi Wallace. When coach Nick Saban's squad is firing on all cylinders, it looks impossible to beat.
That said, Ole Miss is a rather lackluster squad this year, and Clemson looked great in a 31-17 win over another ranked foe, No. 12 Virginia Tech. The Tigers made history with another resume-boosting win early in the season, per Clemson Football:
Clemson Football @ClemsonFB
🚨HISTORY ALERT 🚨 First team in the history of college football with 3 top-15 wins in September: #Clemson #ALLIN 🐅🐾 https://t.co/CqUjOU6pIp2017-10-1 04:14:42
No. 7 Georgia blasted Tennessee 41-0 in Week 5, which should bump them ahead of USC and Washington and have them knocking on the door of the Top Four and a potential College Football Playoff spot.
The combination of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel at running back continues to bedevil defenses, but it's the Bulldogs' defense that makes them a serious contender. The blanking of Tennessee brought their points per game allowed down to 9.2 on the season. Pro Football Focus noted linebacker Roquan Smith was instrumental in shutting down the Volunteers:
PFF College Football @PFF_College
Georgia LB Roquan Smith stood out among that Bulldog defensive performance against Tennessee: https://t.co/I4Xs7Y4Xxy https://t.co/OXrfb5h1P22017-10-1 13:31:07
At the bottom of the poll, San Diego State continues to punch above its weight. The Aztecs notched a 34-28 win over Northwestern, a victory that should at least secure their No. 19 standing but might not boost them up, considering the impressive wins of the teams directly ahead of them in the rankings.
At least one of Mississippi State and LSU will find themselves bounced from the Top 25 after both teams lost in Week 5.
North Carolina State deserves to take one spot, but with so many other contenders to move into the rankings losing in Week 5—such as Duke, Texas Tech, Iowa and Memphis—one of the two losing SEC squads might still earn a number next to their name by the end of Sunday.