Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Alabama dominated Arkansas to move up to the #2 spot in the rankings.
1. LSU (4-0) - Win at West Virginia, 47-21 - Same
LSU has now held the top spot in the rankings for three consecutive weeks, as they have made a very strong case now that they are the best team in the nation. For the second straight week, the Tigers won a tough game on the road, this time pulling away from West Virginia in the second half for a big victory on the strength of huge games from their cornerbacks Tyrann Mathieu, who had both an interception and a forced fumble, and Morris Claiborne, who had a 99-yard kickoff return touchdown. LSU has developed a rhythm on offense, defense and special teams, and have made it clear they are a national championship contender.
2. Alabama (4-0) - Win vs Arkansas, 38-14 - Up 2
The SEC West looks like it is going to be just as strong as it was last year, and after a dominant victory over Arkansas on Saturday, Alabama has now joined LSU to give the SEC West a 1-2 punch at the top of the national rankings. The Crimson Tide showed just how good they can be on Saturday.
The offense was very good, putting up 38 points, but they get help from their defense, which contributed a touchdown on a DeQuan Menzie interception return, and which held the usually-potent Arkansas offense to just 17 rushing yards, and also from special teams, on which Marquis Maze returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown. By winning their first big game in the Southeastern Conference, it has become clear that Alabama can do big things this season.
3. Oklahoma (3-0) - Win vs Missouri, 38-28 - Down 1
Last season, the Oklahoma Sooners saw their championship hopes crushed in Columbia, when they were upset by the Missouri Tigers, 36-27, in what was a battle of unbeaten teams at the time. This year, with Missouri already having one loss, and the Sooners playing at home, Oklahoma was victorious, highlighted by the strength of Ryan Broyles’s 13 receptions, 154 yards and three touchdowns.
Due to Florida State’s second straight loss which slightly diminished the Sooners’ win from the prior week, as well as Alabama’s huge win over Arkansas, the Sooners dropped one spot in the rankings, but they remain a major contender.
4. Boise State (4-0) - Win vs Tulsa, 41-21 - Down 1
For the third consecutive week, the Boise State Broncos drop a spot in the rankings by no fault of their own, but simply by being jumped by another team on the strength of their victory. This week, that team was Alabama, but Boise State had an impressive performance of its own, with a complete dominance of Tulsa.
The final score does not reflect how dominant Boise State was; the Broncos held a 34-0 lead into the third quarter, and held the usually-prolific G.J. Kinne to just 123 passing yards and forced him to throw four interceptions.
5. Oklahoma State (4-0) - Win at Texas A&M, 30-29 - Up 2
The biggest matchup of Week 4 came between the Oklahoma State Cowboys and Texas A&M, and the game certainly lived up to the hype. The Aggies held a 20-3 lead at the half, but in the second half, the Cowboys’ prolific offense caught fire, as the Cowboys scored 27 unanswered, led as always by Brandon Weeden, who threw for 438 yards on 47 completions, while receivers Josh Cooper and Justin Blackmon each caught 11 passes for 123 and 121 yards respectively.
The Aggies were able to bounce back to make it a one-point game, but that was not enough, and with a major victory over a team that had been ranked in the top 10, the Aggies earn a spot in the Top 5.