AP College Football Poll 2017: Week 9 Top 25 Rankings Announced

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistOctober 22, 2017

Penn State's Saquon Barkley (26) celebrates with Mike Gesicki (88) after scoring a touchdown against Michigan during the second half of an NCAA college football game in State College, Pa., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. Penn State won 42-13. (AP Photo/Chris Knight)
Chris Knight/Associated Press

After a Week 7 filled with upsets, things calmed down quite a bit in the latest Associated Press Top 25 released Sunday.

Alabama and Penn State remained atop the poll after Week 8, which did not feature any major upsets. The Nittany Lions gained some wiggle room ahead of Georgia after an emphatic 42-13 win over Michigan, and there were no changes in the Top Eight.

TCU and Wisconsin rounded out the Top Five for the second straight week. Here's a look at the entire Top 25:

1. Alabama

2. Penn State

3. Georgia

4. TCU

5. Wisconsin

6. Ohio State

7. Clemson

8. Miami

9. Notre Dame

10. Oklahoma

11. Oklahoma State

12. Washington

13. Virginia Tech

14. North Carolina State

15. Washington State

16. Michigan State

17. South Florida

18. UCF

19. Auburn

20. Stanford

21. USC

22. West Virginia

23. LSU

24. Memphis

25. Iowa State

The most notable result of the week was Notre Dame moving up four spots to No. 9 after an emphatic 49-14 win over USC. Josh Adams rushed for 191 yards and three touchdowns, and Brandon Wimbush accounted for four scores (two passing, two rushing). The Irish led 28-0 at halftime and also forced three turnovers.

Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold threw an interception and fumbled once in a performance that should end all talk of his Heisman Trophy candidacy. Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly told reporters after the game that Adams, who has rushed for 967 yards already this season, deserves more national recognition.

"He's one of the best players in the country," Kelly said. "... Here's what I know: We're going to play some really good football teams the rest of the year. Maybe everyone should just wait until the end of the year and vote for the Heisman."

The loss dropped the Trojans 10 spots to No. 21.

Also headed in the wrong direction was Michigan, which is now unranked following its 42-13 loss at Penn State. Heisman favorite Saquon Barkley had 161 total yards and three touchdowns, and Trace McSorely accounted for four scores (three rushing, one passing). The Nittany Lions never trailed and held the Wolverines scoreless in the second half in perhaps their best performance of the season.

"When you have an explosive offense like we do and you're playing really good first-quarter defense and you can get a lead, it changes how people have to play," coach James Franklin told reporters. "So we play with an aggressive mindset and an aggressive mentality in all three phases, and it's working out pretty good for us right now."

Penn State's win was the first game of a three-week gauntlet that will define the Nittany Lions' season. It will travel to Columbus to play Ohio State on Saturday before visiting Michigan State a week later. Should Penn State remain undefeated, it may have a claim to unseat Alabama as the No. 1 team in the country.

Aside from USC and Michigan, no other Top 25 team lost this week. Iowa State replaced Michigan in the rankings at No. 25.

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