Ohio State clings to No. 2 in latest AP poll while Texas, Trojans tumble


Following Ohio State’s closer-than-expected win against an unranked Illinois team and Oregon’s second-half shellacking of a Top-Ten Stanford squad, it was thought that the Buckeyes might slip from their season-long perch at No. 2 in the major polls.  While it remains to be seen what happens in the coaches’ poll, the media has kept the status quo.


With Alabama tightening it’s grip on the top spot in the Associated Press poll — they picked up one first-place vote and now hold 58 of 60 — the Ducks inched closer to the Buckeyes, and leapfrogged Boise State in the process.

Oregon jumped from No. 4 to No. 3 following their impressive home win, and come in just 22 points behind Ohio State.  The Buckeyes came into the weekend with a 75-point lead on Boise State, which fell to No. 4.

TCU remains at No. 5, while both Oklahoma and Auburn moved up two spots to No. 6 and No. 8, respectively.  Nebraska fell one to No. 7, and Arizona jumped up five to No. 9.  Utah rounds out the top ten with a three-spot move to No. 10.

Both Florida and Stanford fell seven spots, the Gators to No. 14 and the Cardinal to No. 16.  Wisconsin fell even further, dropping from No. 11 to No. 20.

Michigan State made the largest jump of the week, going from No. 24 to No. 17 — ahead of in-state rival Michigan (No. 18) incidentally — on the strength of their win over the Badgers.  Nevada, which made it’s first poll appearance since 1948 last week, moved up four spots to No. 21.

By far the biggest news in the latest release of the rankings, however, is who’s not included.  Both Texas (then-No. 21) and USC (No. 18) tumbled out of the rankings following losses this past weekend; it’s the first time in nearly a decade that neither school has appeared in an in-season AP poll.  

The Longhorns are unranked for the first time since Oct.15, 2000, a streak of 162 weeks in the rankings.  Ohio State now owns the longest such streak at 90 straight appearances.

Replacing the Longhorns and Trojans, as well as Penn State and North Carolina State, were Oklahoma State (No. 22), Florida State (No. 23), Missouri (No. 24) and Air Force (No. 25).

For all of the pertinent rankings, click AP Poll Week Five.PNG

Ole Miss OT Laremy Tunsil to return for Texas A&M on Oct. 24

Associated Press
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As if this day wasn’t busy enough, Ole Miss announced late Monday evening star-crossed offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil‘s suspension has been capped at seven games, meaning he’ll miss Saturday’s trip to Memphis but return in time for Texas A&M visit to The Grove on Oct. 24.

From the university:

The University initially withheld Tunsil from competition at the start of the season as both the NCAA and the University examined several alleged improper benefits.  During the course of the process, it was determined by the NCAA that Tunsil received impermissible extra benefits that included the use of three separate loaner vehicles over a sixth-month period without payment, a four-month interest-free promissory note on a $3,000 down payment for purchasing a used vehicle, two nights of lodging at a local home, an airline ticket purchased by a friend of a teammate, and one day use of a rental vehicle.  In addition, it was determined that Tunsil was not completely forthcoming when initially questioned by NCAA investigators regarding the loaner vehicles.  He later corrected his account and since apologized. 

As part of his reinstatement conditions, the NCAA imposed a seven-game suspension, ordered Tunsil to pay the value of the extra benefits to a charity, perform community service, and he will also make the vehicle down payment.

Said Tunsil: “I take full responsibility for the mistakes I made and want to thank everyone for their continued support. I want to apologize to my teammates, coaches and the entire Ole Miss family for how my choices affected our program. This was a learning experience, and I’m looking forward to being back on the field with my team and redeeming myself. The last 10 months have been a physical and mental battle for me, but I love playing this game more than anything else. I want to be here for my teammates who are depending on me to finish what we started together.”

The news is, obviously, great for Tunsil and head coach Hugh Freeze personally, as well as the entire Ole Miss football program. It’s also a nice plus for NFL scouts, as it means Tunsil’s first live action of 2015 will come against possible future No. 1 draft pick Myles Garrett.

Hope he’s been practicing.

Report: Steve Spurrier set to retire

Steve Spurrier

Say it ain’t so, Steve.

According to a report from Thayer Evans of Sports Illustrated Monday evening, Steve Spurrier is set to retire.

Spurrier, 70, is a legend the likes college football has never seen before and never will again.

He was a Heisman Trophy winning quarterback at Florida, then returned to his alma mater and turned the program into a juggernaut, leading the Gators to 122-27-1 record from 1990-01 and a national championship in 1996. After a stint with the NFL’s Washington Redskins, Spurrier landed at South Carolina, where since 2005 he’s racked up a school record 86 wins.

But those wins slowed down of late. After an SEC East championship in 2010 and three straight 11-2 seasons from 2011-13, the Gamecocks fell to 7-6 in 2014, and are off to a 2-4 mark this fall. With the possibility of losses to nemeses old and new like Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Florida and Clemson ahead, Spurrier, it appears, would rather fade away quietly to the putting green.

Perhaps no two sentences summarize Spurrier, then and now, more precisely than this:

Combined with his three years at Duke, Spurrier closes up shop with a 228-89-2 mark, and a bust in the coaches’ wing of the Hall of Fame waiting for him.