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Alabama holds firm to top spot in coaches poll; Big Ten has four of top 10

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Following a dismantling of the USC Trojans, No.1  Alabama remains atop the latest Amway Coaches Poll, released this afternoon. The Crimson Tide locked up 62 first-place votes to stay comfortably ahead of No. 2 Clemson. The top two spot sin the coaches poll were unchanged from last week, but there was plenty of movement after that after this wild opening weekend to the college football season.

No. 3 Florida State and No. 4 Ohio State each moved up one spot in the coaches poll, followed by No. 5 Stanford and No. 6 Michigan moving up two spots each. No. 7 Houston jumped up six spots, moving ahead of No. 8 Michigan State in the process. No. 9 Georgia was bumped up seven spots as teams took a free fall out of the top 10, and No. 10 Iowa rounded out the top 10 this week. That puts four teams from the Big Ten in the top 10 of this week’s coaches poll.

No. 13 Oklahoma, No. 21 Notre Dame and No. 22 LSU each fell by at least 10 spots in this week’s poll following losses. LSU took the biggest hit, dropping 16 spots following a loss to Wisconsin in Green Bay. Notre Dame took a harsh hit for an overtime loss at Texas, falling 12 spots. No. 18 Ole Miss fell just six spots after blowing a big lead against Florida State. Teams dropping despite a win included Oregon and Tennessee.

Here is the full coaches poll, with first-place votes noted.

  1. Alabama (62)
  2. Clemson (2)
  3. Florida State
  4. Ohio State
  5. Stanford
  6. Michigan
  7. Houston
  8. Michigan State
  9. Georgia
  10. Iowa
  11. Washington
  12. TCU
  13. Oklahoma
  14. Tennessee
  15. Louisville
  16. Wisconsin
  17. Oklahoma State
  18. Ole Miss
  19. Baylor
  20. Texas
  21. Notre Dame
  22. LSU
  23. Oregon
  24. Texas A&M
  25. Florida

Others Receiving Votes: Miami (Fla.) 108; North Carolina 62; Utah 61; Boise State 52; UCLA 38; Nebraska 37; Arkansas 21; Auburn 16; Brigham Young 15; San Diego State 12; Western Kentucky 11; Navy 10; Pittsburgh 9; West Virginia 8; North Carolina State 7; Southern California 6; South Florida 5; Duke 4; South Alabama 3; Southern Mississippi 2; Colorado 1; Appalachian State 1; Toledo 1.

Boise State-Fresno State MWC championship game set

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Entering Week 12, just one of the nine FBS conference championship games, the ACC, had been set.  As of now, there’s a second one.

Both Boise State (6-0) and Fresno State (5-1) with a firm grip on the MWC’s Mountain and West divisions, respectively.  All BSU needed was for, among other things, 5-1 Wyoming to lose one of its last two games, while FSU needed at least one win to stave off San Diego State.

Saturday, any potential Week 13 drama for either team ended in one fell swoop as Fresno beat Wyoming 13-7 in Laramie.  That result means that the Broncos and Bulldogs will square off in the MWC championship game Dec. 2.

That game will serve as a rematch as both teams close out the regular season against each other next weekend.  The winner of that matchup will likely play host to the title game.  Officially, however, this is how the host site will be determined:

Boise State is currently ranked No. 25 in the most recent College Football Playoff Rankings. If the Broncos are ranked in the CFP poll on Tuesday, November 21 and defeat Fresno State on Saturday, November 25, the 2017 MW Football Championship Game will be held in Boise. If Boise State were to fall out of the CFP poll on Tuesday, November 21 or lose on November 25 to Fresno State, the site would be determined by composite computer rankings and announced on Sunday, November 26.

The Broncos and Bulldogs met in the 2014 MWC championship game, a 28-14 win for Boise.

Scott Frost calls report that he’s close to deal with Nebraska ‘completely false’

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The Scott Frost-to-Nebraska train has shown no signs of slowing down.  In fact, it’s gaining speed.

Frost, the former NU quarterback, has been mentioned prominently as a potential replacement for Mike Riley if/when he’s fired as the Cornhuskers’ head coach.  Given his connection to Lincoln and his success at his current job — he has UCF at 10-0 heading into the regular-season finale — the speculation makes perfect sense.

Overnight, that speculation heated up significantly as Lars Anderson of Bleacher Report tweeted that Frost and his alma mater are nearing an agreement on a seven-year, $35 million contract, with Anderson labeling the two sides as “close” on the deal.

Following UCF’s 45-19 win over Temple that kept the Knights perfect on the season, Frost, at least publicly, dismissed the report.

“That is completely false,” Frost said according to the Lincoln Journal-Star. “I can promise you no deal has been made.”

Of course, those into semantics, being what they are, would suggest that Anderson never reported that a deal has been made.  He merely stated that he’s hearing a deal is close, so Frost’s response was essentially an answer to a question that wasn’t posed.

Regardless, Frost’s name will continue to pop-up in connection to the potential Nebraska opening, and the opening at Florida for that matter until those jobs are filled by someone other than Frost — if one’s not filled by Frost, at least.

After slow start, No. 7 Georgia holds halftime lead over Kentucky between the hedges

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After getting throttled on the Plains of Auburn last week for their first loss, everybody wondered how No. 7 Georgia would respond as they went back home for an emotional-filled Senior Day.

Despite a slow start, it turns out the Bulldogs are doing okay on that front and look to be well on their way to bouncing back against an overmatched Kentucky squad in taking a 21-6 lead into halftime on Saturday afternoon.

UGA quarterback Jake Fromm threw an interception on the team’s opening series but rebounded to finish the half with 108 yards and a score through the air. As is typical, he was mostly handing off to his two big tailbacks in Nick Chubb (31 yards and a TD) and Sony Michel (68 yards, one touchdown), but did toss his 17th touchdown pass of the season on a beautiful pass to set a new school record for freshman quarterbacks.

A key point for the offense came late in the first quarter when punter Cameron Nizialek, a Ray Guy Award semifinalist, drew a roughing the kicker penalty to extend the team’s second offensive possession.  One of Kentucky’s best defenders, safety Mike Edwards, went out a few plays later with a hip injury (he later returned) and the Bulldogs took advantage of all the stars aligning by having Chubb punch in a touchdown to cap off a 75-yard drive.

Defensively, the team was pretty solid even when factoring in having to guard against an extra possession. They limited the Wildcats to just 140 yards on offense and contained dangerous runner Benny Snell to just 33 yards on the ground as well. UK wasn’t too shabby themselves on defense outside of the scoring drive late in the first quarter but seemed to start loosening up as the clock kept ticking.

While the college football slate isn’t the best in this window of games, credit to both sides in this one for at least keeping things somewhat close and interesting. Kentucky still has some hope to pull off the upset despite the home team holding the two-score lead going into the break at halftime.

Justin Motlow becomes first Seminole Tribe member to score a TD for Florida State

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It may have come in a blowout against a vastly-overmatched opponent, but this is pretty damn cool nonetheless.

Per Florida State’s official website, the grandmother of Justin Motlow is 100-percent Seminole Indian, while Motlow himself is 25-percent.  In 2014, Motlow accepted a preferred walk-on spot at FSU, becoming the first Seminole Tribe of Florida member to play football for the Seminoles.

In the fourth quarter of FSU’s 77-6 blowout of FCS Delaware State, Motlow caught a 12-yard touchdown pass from J.J. Cosentino.  Obviously, Motlow became the first Seminole Tribe member to score a touchdown for the ‘Noles, with the football program ensuring that the football Motlow caught finds a very special home.