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Clemson, Auburn benefit from Top-Five losses in coaches’ poll

Dabo Swinney AP

Baylor and Oregon’s on-field losses turned into Clemson and Auburn’s poll gain.

Clemson and Auburn each moved up two spots and into the Top Five of the USA Today coaches’ poll, the former to No. 4 and the latter to No. 5.  The ACC Tigers are back in the Top Five for the first time since their Week 8 loss to Florida State, while the SEC Tigers are back in that group for the first time since winning the BCS title following the 2010 season.

Those two teams were on a bye (Auburn) and beat an FCS team (Citadel) and moved up a pair of spots apiece.  Oklahoma State beat the No. 3 team in the country by 32 points and moved up the same two spots, from No. 9 to No. 7.  For a reason why such a win didn’t carry more weight than a weekend off and a glorified scrimmage, you’d have to ask the football support staff sports information department coaches.

The slotting of the Cowboys is particularly curious when you consider the team they blew out, Baylor, dropped just five and into the No. 8 spot right behind OSU.  Oregon, though, took a serious hit for the egg they laid against Arizona, exiting Week 13 at No. 12 after entering it No. 5.

The first three teams remain unchanged from a week ago: No. 1 Alabama, No. 2 Florida State and No. 3 Ohio State.  The first-place votes remained the same from last week as well, with the Tide claiming 56 and the Seminoles the other six.  The Buckeyes actually gained ground on the ‘Noles, closing the gap between second and third from 83 points after Week 12 to 60 after Week 13.  Barring an FSU loss, however, it’s inconceivable OSU would leapfrog them into the No. 2 hole prior to the release of the final BCS standings early next month.

The remainder of the Top 10 consists of No. 6 Missouri, No. 9 South Carolina and No. 10 Stanford, all up two positions from their standing a week ago.

Fresno State received a boost to its BCS-busting hopes, climbing deeper into the Top 16 to No. 13 (from No. 16) and on the verge of a Top-12 spot that, if it’s mirrored by the final BCS rankings, would guarantee the Bulldogs a BCS bowl.  Fellow BCS buster hopeful Northern Illinois inched up a spot to No. 20.  Along with the top three teams in the coaches’ poll, those two teams are the only remaining unbeatens at the FBS level.

UCF is No. 19, the lowest-ranked of the projected winners of the six automatic-qualifying conferences.  If UCF remains outside the Top 16, the highest-ranked non-AQ school inside that number would receive a BCS berth without having to worry about a Top-12 placement.

LSU and Arizona State are the biggest upward movers of the week, with each climbing four positions.  The Tigers are now at No. 15 and the Sun Devils at No. 18.

LSU is also the highest-ranked three-loss team, while South Carolina is the highest-ranked two-loss squad.

An SEC team, though, also took the biggest hit of the week.  Texas A&M, No. 10 a week ago, took a precipitous drop to No. 21.  UCLA was another big rankings loser, going from No. 14 to No. 22.

Cincinnati is the only new addition to the coaches’ Top 25, coming in at No. 25.  Minnesota, which debuted last week at No. 23, dropped out.

Coaches' Poll Week 13

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32 Responses to “Clemson, Auburn benefit from Top-Five losses in coaches’ poll”
  1. be4bama says: Nov 24, 2013 1:35 PM

    Clemson ranked above Auburn and Missouri…WHY?

  2. John Taylor says: Nov 24, 2013 1:42 PM

    “Clemson ranked above Auburn and Missouri…WHY?”

    The lack of respect for the SEC is staggering, isn’t it?

  3. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 24, 2013 1:46 PM

    Love the way the SEC bias plays. Ensuring that Alabama won’t slip beyond 3 regardless if they lose.

    And then stocking the rankings with two other SEC teams. Wash, rinse and repeat every year.

    People need to stop acting like Clemson is trash. They would beat everyone in the SEC, Pac 12, Big 10 (definitely) and would win 5 out of 10 against the best teams in each league. You just need to realize that FSU has way more talent, speed, athleticism and DEPTH than anyone else, so they just looked that much better than Clemson.

  4. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 24, 2013 1:47 PM

    The real consternation is why Oklahoma State didn’t move up any further than they did.

  5. lbroberts123 says: Nov 24, 2013 1:52 PM

    Really? Clemson would beat everyone in the SEC? I think I smell a homer.

  6. classyjacklambert says: Nov 24, 2013 2:05 PM

    I think he meant to say Clemson COULD beat anyone in those conferences, which is probably true. WOULD can’t legitimately be said for anyone honestly.

  7. jhagman99 says: Nov 24, 2013 2:09 PM

    Imagine if Auburn beats Bama, then Mizzou, and leapfrogs Ohio State. Wouldn’t that be ironic considering the politicking job Coach Meyer did in 2006?

    (here come his apostles now, I bet)

  8. halbert53 says: Nov 24, 2013 2:18 PM

    The wrong OSU is ranked No . 3. Clemson has defeated no one, neither has Ohio State.

  9. classyjacklambert says: Nov 24, 2013 2:23 PM

    I’m sorry halbert, who’s your team? I can’t say I disagree with you about Clemson or OSU, but at least Clemson beat a full strength UGA, which was a very good team. I don’t think they should be ranked as high as they are but who should be ranked ahead of them? Auburn? Maybe. Mizzou, we will see if that’s true when Clemson plays South Carolina next week. Ohio state really should be about 11th though, no argument there.

  10. amosalanzostagg says: Nov 24, 2013 2:25 PM

    If Clemson could beat any one in the SEC, PAC-12 and B1G, then why COULDN’T they beat FSU? What was the score of that HOME game against FSU? Wasn’t it 51-14? Why not beat the teams in your conference before you think you could hang with other schools?

    RTR

  11. classyjacklambert says: Nov 24, 2013 2:31 PM

    I think what he is saying Amazon is that FSU is better than the teams in those conferences. I don’t know if that’s true but they are pretty good.

  12. planck16 says: Nov 24, 2013 2:36 PM

    Come one folks, it is obvious that FSU and Alabama are the cream of the crop right now, head and shoulders above anyone else.

    I want to see Ohio State play a tougher team as I have seen them give up big points to people that they shouldn’t. I think they have gotten respect at #3, but they are not at FSU or Alabama level yet.

    After that, I think all teams are pretty equal and COULD beat anyone they play. Not saying they would, but COULD. These are 18-22 year old kids, one bad text and they could get out of their game!

    Clemson had a bad game vs. a very good FSU team, which is disaster if you played it at home or on the moon. Clemson is a good team, a definite top 10 team and games vs. LSU and UGA show they can compete with anyone.

    @Amosalanzostagg, please name a team from the PAC-12, SEC, or B1G that can say they are undefeated? Only 3 teams can, and they are the top ranked teams in the nation. So why the complaning?

  13. BrownsTown says: Nov 24, 2013 2:36 PM

    I think jacklambert is Bill O’Brien. Little Brother still sour over their trashing from a month ago.

  14. BrownsTown says: Nov 24, 2013 2:39 PM

    “Why not beat the teams in your conference before you think you could hang with other schools?”

    OMG….this coming from an SEC homer. Talk to me again about that Bama-LSU national championship game again…..

  15. classyjacklambert says: Nov 24, 2013 2:57 PM

    Yes because I am one of the 300,000,000 people in this country that knows Ohio State is way overrated, I must be the coach of Penn State… Clearly I’m the delusional one in this scenario.

  16. dkhhuey says: Nov 24, 2013 3:00 PM

    BrownsTown – I think you’re right about assjack!

  17. dbldmr says: Nov 24, 2013 3:09 PM

    Notre Dame played 4 teams ranked in this week’s coaches poll. They beat three of them (USC, ASU and MSU, losing to Oklahoma). Of course they also lost to Michigan and Pitt. Tough team to figure out.

  18. halbert53 says: Nov 24, 2013 3:11 PM

    @classyjacklambert
    Alabama and FSU are head and shoulders above the rest of the field.
    Clemson’s best win was against a middling GA team and Miami which has multiple losses.
    OK ST has a bigger win (undefeated Baylor) but a worse loss early in the season.

    If we were in the 4 team playoff, I would rank 1)Bama, 2)FSU, 3) OK ST, and. 4) Clemson. That way, Bama and Clemson would play in one semi -final and FSU and OK ST in the other instead of two teams in the same conference playing in the opening round of the playoffs. This year, the top two ACC teams on average are as good or slightly better than their SEC counterparts but the SEC has a lot more depth.
    If Ohio State this year played an SEC West schedule like Ole Miss for example (Bama, Auburn, LSU, A&M, MO, Vandy, AR, MSU ) OSU would have multiple losses so they wouldn’t make my Top 4.

  19. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 24, 2013 3:15 PM

    halbert53 says: Nov 24, 2013 3:11 PM

    @classyjacklambert
    Alabama and FSU are head and shoulders above the rest of the field.
    Clemson’s best win was against a middling GA team and Miami which has multiple losses.
    OK ST has a bigger win (undefeated Baylor) but a worse loss early in the season.

    If we were in the 4 team playoff, I would rank 1)Bama, 2)FSU, 3) OK ST, and. 4) Clemson. That way, Bama and Clemson would play in one semi -final and FSU and OK ST in the other instead of two teams in the same conference playing in the opening round of the playoffs. This year, the top two ACC teams on average are as good or slightly better than their SEC counterparts but the SEC has a lot more depth.
    If Ohio State this year played an SEC West schedule like Ole Miss for example (Bama, Auburn, LSU, A&M, MO, Vandy, AR, MSU ) OSU would have multiple losses so they wouldn’t make my Top 4.
    —————

    Agreed fully here.

  20. classyjacklambert says: Nov 24, 2013 3:16 PM

    Okay I can agree with everything you said, except Clemson never played Miami and UGA at the beginning and end of the yea was more than just a middling team, they were just plagued with injuries during the middle of the season.

  21. thraiderskin says: Nov 24, 2013 4:23 PM

    Halbert, but you don’t know that for sure… all u anti-Ohio State trolls have is the same old argument for every team behind Ohio State, but those teams keep losing. Ohio State has just as good talent as any program, year in year out, and they keep winning. Mizzou was crap last year, are u trying to tell me a crap team last year, from a crap conference two years ago are suddenly the world-beaters in a “world beater” conference in just one year? Come on now… You don’t know how Ohio state would finish in the SEC and Mizzou’s success is proof of it.

  22. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 24, 2013 4:40 PM

    Ohio State is not as good as FSU and Alabama. Get over it. The eye test proves what the already-invalid SOS gripes you Ohio State fans keep trying to make have already proven.

  23. BrownsTown says: Nov 24, 2013 4:57 PM

    Good job, Jack. ‘Cause I was being literal with that comment.

  24. halbert53 says: Nov 24, 2013 5:41 PM

    Strength of schedule matters. If it didn’t, 11-0 NIU would be ranked No. 1. The Overrated State University has played no one and gave up 30-something against that real high-octane offense known as Illinois. Urban Meyer knows where most of the best football programs are but is too chicken to play top teams in the SEC/ACC.

  25. dkhhuey says: Nov 24, 2013 6:43 PM

    Yes burt – because 2 titles in the SEC means Urban doesn’t know how to win in big boy football!

    Face it all – Ohio State is a very good team and could hang with any of them! Personally, I hope we get to play Alabama in the NC because the only way to shut up all the college football experts on this site is to beat the king of the hill and that is Bama! Two of the best football programs coached by two of the best coaches!

  26. thraiderskin says: Nov 24, 2013 6:47 PM

    SOS is important and a fact, but your argument about where THE Ohio State would finish in any conference is garbage. Mizzou could barely handle big12 competition and now they are rocking those “powerhouse” programs in the SEC, so let’s talk overrated and let’s go ahead and throw the ACC in with it.
    I’m not going to say OSU is better than Bama or FSU, but get off the ACC is suddenly great trip, its the same ol’ACC, same old Clemson, same old Miami.

    Its OSU’s SOS why they are #3, its the other program’s inability to do what’s necessary for why they are where they are… why don’t you people tell us more about Baylor and Stanford!

  27. cincyfredo says: Nov 24, 2013 7:50 PM

    I think Auburn would jump the Bucknuts if they win out. If they beat #1, two-time defending national champ Alabama, then beat #5 Missouri, that gives them like 6 wins vs. top 25. They would leap over Ohio State and play Florida State.
    Ohio State hasn’t played 6 top 25 teams in the last 10 years. Cupcakes gonna’ cost Bucknuts. Way to go Urban Renewal ….

  28. pastabelly says: Nov 24, 2013 8:24 PM

    Clemson is playing at South Carolina next weekend. We’ll find out a lot then. The ACC is having a good year. There really weren’t any trashy teams.

  29. be4bama says: Nov 24, 2013 8:42 PM

    BCS got it right!!

  30. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 24, 2013 9:07 PM

    pastabelly says: Nov 24, 2013 8:24 PM

    Clemson is playing at South Carolina next weekend. We’ll find out a lot then. The ACC is having a good year. There really weren’t any trashy teams.
    ———-

    Agreed, other than UVa and State, we have 10 bowl teams, and the rest are really good in at least one facet. But then again, ESPN/ABC have a billions of reasons to parrot the myth of SEC supremacy. Brain dead people who can’t think for themselves think the ACC isn’t indeed the 2nd best (and close) conference in the nation. FSU blowing out the 2nd and 3rd best teams in the conference doesn’t make the conference “weak” it just means FSU is just that much better than everyone else in it.

    Just as they were in the 90s.

  31. Anoesis says: Nov 25, 2013 2:55 AM

    A couple of hilarious comments on this thread.

    1) Of course the BCS “got it right” when it comes to ranking SEC schools near the top. ESPN owns college football (broadcast 35 of 37 bowl games last year) and they make sure the SEC stays well-ranked. How else would they get a good return on that $2.5 billion investment?

    2) SEC fans calling out any other team for a “cup cake” schedule while padding their win total with FCS schools every year. At the END of the year, no less.

    The SEC doesn’t have an impressive schedule against other conferences during the regular season. Look it up. They do have a good record in bowls, but most of those are basically home games. There’s a reason SEC schools stay close to home and make sure their OOC games are FCS snacks.

    They beat each other up, but rarely fall far in the rankings because of the pervasive narrative that the SEC is some kind of wonder conference. If they lose to each other it’s because the “conference is so strong.” When the same thing happens in other conferences it’s because “it’s a weak conference.” The hypocrisy is thick enough to walk on.

  32. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 25, 2013 2:59 AM

    Precisely ^^^

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