NCAAF Week 8 AP Poll Critiques


Finally, I’m back on my regular schedule of procrastinating all week until I remember to write this and then it’s an all-out blitz to finish before Saturday morning. God, it sounds like I’m back in college, only there’s way less cheap booze and Red Bull to get me through this process. Also, remember several things about these takes: 1) They’re mine and mine alone, and 2) They’re probably wrong and born out of jealousy towards teams and programs more successful than the one I root for. Anyway, also remember to tweet @ConorFDoherty or leave a comment if you want to tell me how wrong I am. Now, follow the Yellow Brick Road.

1. Alabama

  • At this point, I’m just begging the football gods to be merciful and give Alabama a loss somehow so that I can say that another team was better than them for once. Having to see this type of domination week in and week out, no, year in and year out, is so boring. Now I know what it feels to be an NBA fan watching the Warriors every year. I mean, this team doesn’t even need Tua to blow out teams. He goes down, and Jalen Hurts just steps in and the team barely misses a step. At this rate, I’m just hoping Tua goes back to coaching sorority intramural flag football while Saban goes back to South Beach and ruins the Dolphins again.

2. Ohio State

  • Well, someone better pick up that phone cause I freaking called it. The Nuts played down to the competition for about a half or so and then finally remembered that they’re the better team and blew out the Row Boats of Minnesota. Next up is Purdue… in a primetime game… on ABC? Did ABC have no better choice for this week?

3. Clemson

  • The ACC’s resident powerhouse plays host to an up and comer who hopes to dethrone the big bad Tigers. I think we can all see how this is probably going to end. The Tigers have had two weeks to prepare for this game while NC State is coming off a close game against a good BC team. Hopefully, this is a close game or the ACC will continue to look like the worst Power 5 conference this season.

4. Notre Dame

  • The game against Pitt shouldn’t have been anywhere near close, especially at home and yet the Shamrocks had to pull a comeback out of their backsides, at home, to escape with their season intact. Lose that game, and there is no way they would make the playoffs. Now, the Hunchbacks get a bye ready themselves for Navy’s triple option and traveling to¬† San Diego for the game.

5. LSU

  • Huh, deja vu must be real cause I could have sworn I saw this team here a few weeks ago. Oh, that’s right. They decided they didn’t want to win as badly as Florida did and lost, to put Georgia in a similar state before pouncing for the kill. To be fair, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a team go from 5th to 13th and then right back to where they were a week before dropping. It’s like the AP pollers have no consistency and just put teams where they please. Let’s hope Oregon doesn’t poop the bed against the Rebels again with Alabama coming to town next week.

6. Michigan

  • Guess I get to eat some L’s this week with that terrible hot take from last week’s article. Despite the impressive win, I’m still waiting, knowing that somehow this team is going to implode and get exposed as frauds, as they always do since Harbaugh took over. Now they get their in-state rivals coming to town this week, a perfect chance to see if Coach Khakis can exorcize some of his Wolverine demons.

7. Texas

  • A closer than expected game against an overmatched Baylor team?! Geez, it’s like the entire top 10 from last week wanted to lose just to see what happened to the rankings. A bye week should help them get ready for the Cowboys (the one from Oklahoma, not the one with the delusional fanbase who thinks beating the Jags means a Super Bowl win is imminent).

8. Georgia

  • Geez, its deja vu as well with this team except I feel like I saw this happen last year. Oh right, a high ranked Georgia team got blown out on the road and saw their playoff hopes begin to waver a bit. Jesus, it’s like watching a tv show that’s overstayed its welcome and is reusing the same tired cliches every episode and every season. Next, we’re going to see this team make the playoffs and lose heartbreakingly to the Giant Elephant in the Room; oh wait.

9. Oklahoma

  • Nothing like a relaxing bye week to get the mind at ease and get back to destroying the rest of the Big 12, except Texas. Man, the Sooners are going to be pissed against TCU, knowing they had a chance for an extraordinary comeback. In the end, like every Big 12 team, the defense was their downfall. The Horned Frogs have been a slide since their loss to Ohio State, so the Sooners are ready to continue that slide for them.

10. UCF

  • It’s always interesting to see a team come so close to losing a long winning streak. Moreover, it’s a great way to see how well coached that team is when down late in a game. Teams need to show moxie, and this team does have moxie. Now the Knights have a few easy weeks before a tough three weeks to end the season. Of course, I said this past game against Memphis was going to be an easy win so what do I know. I’m just an idiot who puts his opinions online, where of course, everyone is right.

11. Florida

  • Man, did this game come close to fisticuffs? Now, just like UCF, the Gators showed that they’re able to come back from a big deficit, but for a while there, they looked like they weren’t mentally tough. Two players were ejected after Dan Mullen tried to fight Derek Mason and one of the players began to throw a tantrum as he was being escorted off the field. But like UCF, Florida showed that they were the better team. Just like several other teams already talked about, the Gators get a bye to prepare for a road trip to a tough conference opponent. Up next is the Team between the Hedges in Athens.

12. Oregon

  • They say hindsight is 20/20 and for Oregon, hindsight must be kicking their butts right now. Simply take two knees against Stanford and this team would be top 10 easily with two wins over top 10 conference opponents. Up next is a chance to ruin Wazzou’s first College Gameday visit.

13. West Virginia

  • It seems like Iowa State took a page out of Iowa’s playbook and decided to play an evening game with all black uniforms against a top 10 team. That entire state is just one big trap for ranked opponents. They need to stay away. Will Grier dropped off the Heisman race entirely with this game, throwing for just 100 yards and a pick. Those would be great stats if he were a DB/kick returner, not a Heisman hopeful QB and possible 1st round pick in next year’s draft. Now, this team is still up there for the Big 12, which it will probably end up shredding itself, but now Texas is the favorite. Dear God, I can’t believe WVU had to make me say that.

14. Kentucky

  • Well, the Wildcats one-uped Penn State from last week and went up four spots for doing absolutely nothing, except get to relax and remember that they’re a basketball school. Now they get the Fighting Commodores, who are pissed that they couldn’t finish off Florida last week. I just heard that Vandy head coach Derek Mason wants to fight Conner McGregor now. Let’s just hope no one from his team tries to fight McGregor as well or the Wildcats for that matter.

15. Washington

  • The Good Boys are no longer Good Boys, more like Sad Boys who had their favorite toy taken away. The Huskies could have taken firm control of the North Division but like so many players this year, they couldn’t grasp it long enough and dropped it at the 1 yard line. I’m looking at you, Georgia. And what do they get as their reward, a game hosting a team with one of the best receivers in the country in Colorado. Classic trap game before a trap game before hosting a true conference rival in Stanford.

16. NC State

  • See Clemson above.

17. Texas A&M

  • This is the best time of the year when ranked conference opponents play against each other and we get to conferences shred themselves to death, leaving only a few survivors left to argue over which bowl game they should be sent to. This team isn’t going to fight for the conference or even the division crown but they’ll be fighting for the coveted spot of third best team in the SEC…West.

18. Penn State

  • My, how the mighty have fallen. Guess losing Barkley and your starting TE were too much to overcome. McSorley has regressed and while Sanders has looked like Barkley-lite, the rest of the team hasn’t be able to make up for those losses. It only gets harder from here. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this team drop completely out of the rankings within three weeks. In fact, that will almost certainly happen.

19. Iowa

  • Don’t look now but a potential challenger is coming for the conference championship. Lucky for Ohio State, they don’t have to play them at all this season The offense is humming along like a Big 12 team. This doesn’t sound like a typical Iowa team, and that’s because it isn’t. Penn State visits next week and we’ll know where both teams stand.

20. Cincinnati

  • There isn’t much else I can say about this team except watch out for Temple and don’t look ahead. Oh, who am I kidding? They’re gonna look ahead like a kid picking out Christmas gifts from the Black Friday catalogs and make this game a whole lot closer than it should probably have any right to be. Now granted, Temple isn’t bad by any stretch of the imagination but the Bearcats should win.

21. USF

  • I’ve run out of words to describe a team playing down to competition. Its like no one ever learned anything about trying to avoid upsets. Now, often upsets occur because a team played up to their potential or competition and not always the other way around. But USF came damn close to the latter option. Tulsa wasn’t matching the Bulls score for score, like it was an NFC South divisional game. Rather, the Bulls just never could put enough distance between the teams and Tulsa lost by just 1 point. Now the Bulls get frecking UConn at home. UConn has had one of the worst defense in the country for some years now. So I’m expecting them to either keep the game close for about one half to three quarters of the way through before USF finally figures out what scoring over 30 points is or the Huskies will show some defense on the first drive before letting the floodgates open and USF builds a 30 point lead by halftime.

22. Mississippi State

  • See above for how I think this game at LSU might go cause I don’t really see this team pulling off the upset on the road.

23. Wisconsin

  • An even mightier fall than Penn State. My god is Alex Hornibrook not a starting caliber QB. The only lefty Qb’s allowed in college football are Tim Tebow, Matt Leinart, Mike Vick and Tua. Thankfully they get to play Illinois. Seriously, I don’t even know when the last time Illinois was even good in football. The only time that comes to mind is when they beat #1 Ohio State in the Horseshoe and even then, they finished 20th in the rankings. haven’t seen anything from them since. Badgers should rebound easily.

24. Michigan State

  • I don’t really know what to think of when talking about this team. Are they good, are they bad, or are they somewhere in the middle? Then I give up this exercise because half of all college football teams or more are in the exact same situation. Also, I had no idea if this game is in Ann Arbor or East Lansing for a few minutes because Google kept showing it as MSU vs Michigan with Michigan shown as the home team. Spartans will keep it close but Harbaugh will exorcise half of the demons weighing down his waistline cause he wants to get slimmer khakis.

25. Washington State

  • College GameDay is coming to Pullman for the first time, which is about all the good news that Cougars are going to get.

That’ll do it for the critiques this week. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.

Published on 10/20/18 at 9:02 AM EDT.
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