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 Top 25 Poll - Week 13 - No. 1 - Auburn, For The 7th Week 
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Post Top 25 Poll - Week 13 - No. 1 - Auburn, For The 7th Week
Top 25 Poll - Week 13 - No. 1 - Auburn, For The 7th Week
by: Ed Bagley

The AP Top 25 and Coaches Top 25 College Football Polls are nationally recognized, but after 50+ years of watching and/or covering college football games, and being a former sports editor for a daily newspaper, here is another view:

There may by a lot of argument about which team is No. 1, Oregon or Auburn. I simply favor Auburn, and here is why:

1) Auburn (12-0) - Down 24-zip to Alabama, which had won 20 straight games at home, the Tigers came back to win their final game of the regular season, 28-27, and claim the SEC's West Division title with a perfect 9-0 record. Now the Tigers face South Carolina for the SEC championship. Should they win, they will face Oregon (if the Ducks remain undefeated) for the national title. For 4 consecutive weeks, the AP Top 25 Poll has favored Oregon over Auburn. I have had Auburn #1 and Oregon #2 for 7 consecutive weeks. Dude, I am not changing until Auburn loses.

2) Oregon (11-0) - Like Auburn, came from behind to beat Arizona, 48-29. It still appears like the Oregon offense cannot be stopped. Now the Ducks must beat Oregon State this week in their final game, aptly called The Civil War because it can get ugly and mean. This may be one case where a duck can kill off a beaver and survive to play in the national championship game against Auburn.

3) Wisconsin (11-1) - Badgers ripped Northwestern a new one, 70-23, the 3rd time this year their offense has scored 70+ points. Wisconsin has a lock on going to the Rose Bowl instead of Ohio State or Michigan State, both of whom tied with Wisconsin for the Big Ten title. As a Michigan State grad, I would love to see the Spartans in the Rose Bowl, but have to admit Wisconsin looks tougher to beat, even though Michigan State DID beat Wisconsin head-to-head.

4) Stanford (11-1) - Shut out Oregon State 38-zip. The Cardinal season is over; they will finish no worse than 2nd in the Pac-10 with an 8-1 record, and could tie Oregon for the title if the Ducks lose to Oregon State. Will be the likely pick to get an at-large BCS bowl bid.

5) TCU (12-0) - Finished season by whipping 168th-ranked New Mexico (there are 48 AA teams better than New Mexico since there are only 120 major college teams in Division I-A), 66-17. Played the 22nd easiest schedule among the AP Top 25 teams, and probably doesn't belong here, but I am flipping the Horned Frogs a bug because they are only 1 of 3 unbeaten teams left, despite their weak schedule. Will be in the Rose Bowl against Wisconsin at worst, and could play in the national championship game if Oregon loses to Oregon State this week.

6) Michigan State (11-1) - Beat Penn State in Happy Valley, 28-22, to end its season. Tied for the Big Ten title with Wisconsin and Ohio State at 7-1 in league play. Was the only team to beat Wisconsin, 34-24, a win that looks larger every week. May not get into 1 of the 5 BCS games because weak winners from other major conferences get an automatic ride into a BCS game, even though they are not as good as Michigan State.

7) Arkansas (10-2) - Upended LSU 31-23 to finish 2nd in the SEC West Division with a 6-2 mark. Just happen to compete in the same division as Auburn. The South Carolina Gamecocks won the East Division with a 5-3 record and will play Auburn for the SEC title.

8) Ohio State (11-1) - Hammered Michigan, 37-7, at the Big House to end the year tied for the Big Ten title with Wisconsin and Michigan State. All of the other polls have Ohio State ahead of Michigan State. Buckeyes will play a bowl game somewhere.

9) Nebraska (10-2) - Beat Colorado 45-17 to win the Big 12 North Division title and earned the right to probably face Oklahoma for the Big 12 championship. Took down Missouri to win the Big 12 North.

10) Missouri (10-2) - Finished year by downing Kansas 35-7. Played 7th toughest schedule among the AP Top 25.

11) Oklahoma (10-2) - Knocked off Oklahoma State in an away game, 47-41, when it mattered. Will probably play Nebraska for the Big 12 championship.

12) Nevada (11-1) - I will give some props to any team that wins 11 games and takes down the mighty high and whiny Boise State Broncos in overtime, 34-31. The Wolf Pack was down 17 points and came back to snap Boise State's 24-game winning streak, knock the Broncos out of the national title picture, and perhaps even a BCS game bid. Go Wolf Pack, enjoy the spoils of your labors.

13) Virginia Tech (10-2) - Slammed Virginia 37-7 to end the regular season. Won the Atlantic Coast Coastal Division title with an 8-0 mark and will face Florida State for the ACC title. Virginia Tech opened the season by losing to Boise State and AA James Madison and now has won 10 straight - that's a great coaching job and shows the Hokies can rebound from adversity.

14) Oklahoma State (10-2) - The Cowboys just had to haul off and lose to Oklahoma, 47-41, when it counted most. They did, however, win a share of the Big 12 South Division with Oklahoma; both teams were 6-2.

15) LSU (10-2) - Sorry, LSU, just can't rank you higher. You lost to Arkansas, and I do not elevate teams that lose late in the year when it counts.

16) South Carolina (9-3) - Beat Clemson 29-7 on the road in final game. Will play Auburn for the SEC championship. Beat Alabama earlier in the year. Played 9th toughest schedule among the AP Top 25.

17) Alabama (9-3) - Lost to Auburn by a point, 28-27, after being up 24 points. Played 4th toughest schedule among the top 25 teams.

18) Texas A&M (9-3) - Beat Texas 24-17 in last game. Upset Nebraska 9-6. Played 2nd toughest schedule among the top 25 teams.

19) Florida State (9-3) - Just trashed Florida, 31-7. That is a major, big daddy whipping of the once mighty Gators, who have fallen into the swamp. Played 13th toughest schedule.

20) Boise State (10-1) - Got taken down a notch or two by Nevada, losing in overtime when the Bronco kicker could not decide which foot to use. More to their normal competition, the Broncos will play their final game against a pathetic Utah State team, ranked 114th among 120 major college teams.

21) West Virginia (8-3) - Decided to bomb Pittsburgh, 35-10, in an away game, beating another whiny team. Hosts Rutgers next. Let's see if the Mountaineers can end the season at 9-3.

22) Notre Dame (7-5) - Upset Southern California 20-16 at Los Angeles. It's not normally easy to win in Tinseltown against the Trojans. Coach Brian Kelly has the Fighting Irish on the upswing.

23) Northern Illinois (10-2) - Finished regular season by crushing a weak Eastern Michigan team, 71-3. Won the Mid American Conference West Division title with a perfect 8-0 mark, and will face Miami-Ohio, the East Division winner, for the MAC title. Go Huskies!

24) Hawaii (9-3) - Pounded a really crummy New Mexico State team, 59-24, to end the year, much like TCU and Boise State do all season. Finally broke into the AP Top 25 at 25. Hawaii is not all that good, but still figured out how to win 9 games.

25) Washington (5-6) - Decided to throw the Dogs a bone. There are a lot of other teams with more wins, better talent and deeper talent, but Washington has played the toughest schedule among all 245 Division 1-A and 1-AA teams. The Huskies have faced 7 teams that have been ranked in the AP Top 25 this year, and upset two of them - Southern Cal and Oregon State. They are still not bowl eligible, but could be if they beat Washington State in their final game this coming week. Sagarin has the Huskies ranked 41st nationally despite being a 5-win team. Could the Washington Huskies be the best 5-win team in the country? Let's find out.

About The Author
Ed Bagley's Articles is Writer, Author and Editor Ed Bagley's personal web site with hundreds of original articles on 49 different subjects, including complete weekly coverage of the NCAA college football scene the during season, plus Ed Bagley's Top 25 Poll as an alternative to the AP and Coaches Polls. Find Ed Bagley's Articles at:http://www.edbagleyblog.com
The author invites you to visit:

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Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:35 am
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