AP Poll: Florida State and Auburn are the top two, Alabama No. 3 after Week 15
Say goodbye to the regular season. The Army-Navy game is the last vestige of 2013, and college football moves on to bowls before hibernating for the long winter. What a way to go out, with former No. 2 Ohio State falling to Michigan State in the Big Ten championship, Baylor winning its first Big 12 title and Auburn and Missouri giving fans a thriller for the SEC.
The Week 16 AP Poll has No. 1 and No. 2 precisely how the BCS standings will look: Florida State and Auburn. Although teams will be shifted around with the computers and the polls that make up the rankings, the AP Poll can help as everyone starts to come up with their remaining bowl predictions. Alabama is at No. 3, with Michigan State and Pac-12 winner Stanford rounding out the top five.
The complete AP Poll (with first-place votes in parenthesis) is below:
1. Florida State (56)
2. Auburn (4)
4. Michigan State
7. Ohio State
8. South Carolina
13. Oklahoma State
16. Arizona State
20. Texas A&M
21. Fresno State
24. Northern Illinois
25. Notre Dame
Here are a few thoughts from this week’s results:
• With Oklahoma’s win over Oklahoma State, the Big 12′s chance to get two teams into the BCS is in jeopardy, although the Sooners have a shot. They travel well and those bowl games end up being more about money and attention than finding the best teams or matchups. After the up-and-down season Oklahoma had, including the loss to Texas, it’s kind of stunning the Sooners have a shot at an at-large BCS bid in the first place. It’s been one of the quieter 10-win seasons for Bob Stoops, who dealt with a quarterback carousel and a bevy of injuries over the course of the year.
• It’s looking like one of Clemson or Oregon will be left out if Oklahoma gets in with another of the at-large bids. A spot opened up when Northern Illinois lost to Bowling Green in the MAC championship on Friday. There are plenty of ways to make a case for why a team deserves to get in, but Oregon got creative, citing Facebook and Instagram likes. “O brave new world, That has such people in’t!”
• Four AP voters thought enough of Auburn’s late season surge to give the Tigers No. 1 votes. They beat Alabama and No. 9 Missouri in back-to-back weeks and did have a better strength of schedule by the numbers than FSU. The Seminoles passed the eye test all year, though, pummeling everything that was set in front of them. At least the BCS sorted itself out, and we’ll know soon enough who is truly No. 1.