Posted January 07, 2014

Florida State No. 1 in final AP Poll after beating Auburn in BCS championship game

Auburn Tigers, Florida State Seminoles, Michigan State Spartans, Polls
Jimbo Fisher

Jimbo Fisher and Florida State won the BCS title after beating Auburn 34-31 Monday night. (Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

Florida State (14-0) capped an undefeated campaign with a 34-31 victory over Auburn in the BCS title game, officially bringing an end to the 2013 college football season. With all of the results in the books, it’s time to see how the rankings shook out. The final AP Poll was released early on Tuesday morning — and it certainly included a few surprises.

The Seminoles finished No. 1, followed by Auburn, Michigan State, South Carolina and Missouri, in succession. The full poll is listed below, with first-place votes in parentheses.

1. Florida State (60)
2. Auburn
3. Michigan State
4. South Carolina
5. Missouri
6. Oklahoma
7. Alabama
8. Clemson
9. Oregon
10. UCF
11. Stanford
12. Ohio State
13. Baylor
14. LSU
15. Louisville
16. UCLA
17. Oklahoma State
18. Texas A&M
19. USC
20. Notre Dame
21. Arizona State
22. Wisconsin
23. Duke
24. Vanderbilt
25. Washington

A few closing thoughts:

• Florida State captured its third AP national title. That ties the Seminoles for the ninth-most titles of all-time, with Florida and Texas.

• Clemson (11-2) may have knocked off Ohio State in the Orange Bowl, but it still couldn’t finish as the top-ranked program in its own state. South Carolina (11-2), which dispatched Wisconsin 34-24 in the Capital One Bowl on New Year’s Day, came in at No. 4. The Tigers finished at No. 8. The final rankings will likely come as welcome news to Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier, who hasn’t been afraid to take a few jabs at Clemson coach Dabo Swinney.

• Despite clinching the school’s highest-ever AP Poll finish, UCF (12-1), which defeated Baylor 52-42 in the Fiesta Bowl, seems ranked a bit low at No. 10. Quarterback Blake Bortles and company’s sole loss came to South Carolina on Sept. 28. The American Athletic Conference champs beat Louisville 38-35 on Oct. 18.

Agree or disagree with the final poll? Let us know in the comments below.

132 comments
TimStegink
TimStegink

 I am a huge Michigan State fan and my bias said they should be #2, but their strength of schedule went to crap.  I cannot and will not say whether we could have beat FSU or Auburn.  I would like to think the defense would at least have made it a good game.  Michigan State being number 3 wasn't their fault or a knock on them, it was the Big Ten's fault.  

stlballin
stlballin

As a Mizzou fan, we could make a convincing argument for being 4th and ahead of South Carolina. We went 12-2 vs. 11-2, won the SEC East, beat A&M and Okie St. and played Auburn pretty tough (down just a field goal coming into the 4th). And they lost to Tennesee and Georgia, teams we beat up on. Yes, they beat us (without James Franklin), but we were 1 play from being 12-0 coming into the SEC title game. I'd say we had the better season (and beat the better bowl opponent). 

DanielAnderson
DanielAnderson

You MSU fans need to quit whining.  When you get in a conference that has top quality teams, like the SEC, (The Elite of collage football) and actually have to play true contenders, then you can start complaining.  MSU could not have beaten Auburn this year.  Nine of their games were against top 25 teams, when they played them.  How many did MSU play.

Wells
Wells

Let me see, 1st place beats 2nd place, 3rd place loses, 4th place beats 5th place, and 4th place only moves ahead of 3rd place loser, does make sense.  Michigan State should be #2.

banghartlaw
banghartlaw

Out of the previous 15 BCS championship games, the losing team fell out of the final top 2 AP Poll positions 9 times.  Four times a #1 ranking fell to a #2 ranking after a championship loss ('02 Miami, '05 USC, '06 OSU, 11 'LSU).  Only twice has a #2 ranked team held their #2 AP Ranking after a loss before this year.  VA Tech in 1999 and Texas in 2009.


I'll say it again, MSU gets no respect.

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

 If the team ranking is a 'fix', does that mean recruiting class rankings are fixed too?  They seem to be closely related; teams with strong recruiting classes seem to have better results.  Now that I think about it, the NFL draft board must be fixed too... 

Robert96
Robert96

Did the QB rape a white, black or Oriental girl?

Ephraim66
Ephraim66

Nebraska lost out on being #25 by two points; ended up ranked #26. Thanks to Nate Sandel for ranking Georgia (whom Nebraska BEAT in the Gator Bowl)  #19 and Nebraska only #25.  Also want to thank Chris Fowler and Andy Staples for not even ranking Nebraska.  The AP Poll has, and always will be, biased against Huskers.  USA Today Coaches Poll (ranked Huskers #25) is better poll. 

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

To be smart about this topic, you need to look at 2 factors: 1) The motivation of the teams; the Buckeyes & BAMA had no real reason to win, their National Championship hopes were already crushed.  2) How teams won or lost their respective games; Auburn won 3 games on the last play of the game.  No trite: "better lucky, than good" posts.  Please don't hate on BAMA or the SEC, it shows your single digit IQ; BAMA has not played a game without National Title importance since they lost to Utah (another bowl game that did NOT matter)  First Place or First Loser...  

JoshPeller
JoshPeller

THIS IS GLORIFIED PROFESSIONAL WRESTLING, MICHIGAN STATE SHOULD BE 2 nd NEEDS TO BE 75TH AT BEST

Chessmaster
Chessmaster

The CON/nonsense continues... the bumrush to stack half the SEC into ratings, regardless of losses and scheduling fixes. The SEC is good, with 'some' great teams, but simply not this many this high... and its been the same BS for 4 yrs now. The coming playoff system 'should' finally retard this abuse... at least a little.

West_of_113
West_of_113

Why is Notre Dame ranked? C'mon Man!

RobertL51260612
RobertL51260612

@si_ncaaf SEC is remains the strongest conference as they have 7 teams in the final top 25 rankings and 4 teams out of the top 7 are SEC.

First1
First1

The SEC might be the best conference but it doesn't mean any particular SEC team is better than any other team.  The problem is that the sportswriters have become lazy and let "SEC" decide who is better as an easy to way to ranking individual teams.

rentistoohigh
rentistoohigh

Actually last night's BCS was NFL caliber playoff IMHO....complete with NFL caliber officiating

rentistoohigh
rentistoohigh

How dare they rank Johnny "future HOF" Touchdown so low !!! LOL 

JamesDunn
JamesDunn

MSU's performance should have got it into the #2 spot and Auburn with 2 losses into at least 3rd spot.

zeebaneighba
zeebaneighba

This bowl season should put to rest any notions of inviting conference also-rans to participate in the four-team playoff. You can't identify the "best" teams when practically none of them have played a significant cross-conference game in two and a half months. Alabama is a case in point - people assumed they would have had a spot in a four-way, but the Oklahoma game showed what a mistake that would have been.

 All you can do is identify the most deserving - and those have to be conference champs. There might be room for at-large invites in an eight-team playoff, but a four-team setup is too small for anyone but champions. If Notre Dame wants to be considered, let them join a conference.



Fifilo
Fifilo

Let's see how the ESPN Propaganda cash machine spins this. Oh, those NFL caliber Suck EC defenses. How many points did the might 'Bama roll over for?

mcmilch
mcmilch

Next year no more talk About 1&2 loss SEC teams having the "god given" right to play in the title. You will have to win baby no more talk!

ryanmoUM
ryanmoUM

@mponeil15 Inexcusable that a one-loss MSU team who dominated the Rose Bowl is behind a two-loss Auburn team, regardless of well they played

fivedollarwill
fivedollarwill

@DanielAndersonYou SEC fans need to stop gloating. The SEC has the most influential sports outlet (ESPN) quite literally invested in it's success (the SEC Network), so it's no wonder that the SEC magically had 4 teams in the preseason top 10 this past season. That all but ensured that they could have 2 of those still in the top 10 at the end of the season, along with a couple more that can move their way up because they get to play these "elite" teams that are given the honor by the media before they even play their first game. 

Historically, the SEC has had average success in non-conference play, which is really the only way to judge a conference as a whole. To use Auburn's membership in the SEC to infer that they would have somehow magically beat Michigan State is ridiculous. MSU and Auburn both had great seasons and played great teams, and personally, I think if they fought it out it would have been a great game. I could see an argument for either of them in the number 2 spot, but it's clear to me that MSU had to play better and work harder for their ounce of respect, while Auburn was free to tack on one more loss and one fewer win simply because they belong to a conference that is subjectively viewed as superior.

James C
James C

@DanielAnderson I think MSU could have beaten Auburn this season because MSU had the best defense in the nation this season. When you put that defense up against a team that should have rolled over them (Stanford), MSU came up with the big plays and won that game. The simple fact is MSU could have beaten any team in the country based on their defense. The lack of offensive power may have cost them games to a lot of teams. 


I think the only reason Auburn stayed ahead of MSU was the game came down to the final minute against FSU. Had FSU beaten Auburn by more than 8 points (1 score), MSU likely jumps to 2 with Auburn #3. 

banghartlaw
banghartlaw

I would add, the 1999 and 2009 games were clashes between unbeaten teams.  The losing team was guaranteed to have a no worse record than the #3 team.


Two loss Auburn is the first BCS Era team to have a worse record than the #3 team.

Hypnotised
Hypnotised

@Ephraim66 Couldn't BELIEVE Georgia was ranked AHEAD of Nebraska! Nebraska just BEAT THEM in a freaking bowl game!! Sheesh!

UnassumingLocalGuy
UnassumingLocalGuy

@VoiceoReasonCorrect me if I'm wrong, but isn't motivation and a "will to win" (no matter who is on the schedule each week) characteristics of great teams? If 'Bama lost to Oklahoma and the Buckeyes lost to Clemson due to lack of effort, isn't that worse than winning games because of good fortune?

JoshPeller
JoshPeller

Notre Dame should be 75th at best, how can you have 5 SEC teams in top 7 after a solid but unspectacular bowl effort.  

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

@Chessmaster Hey Chessmaster, you seem like a smart person.  Do you 'buy into' all the "Media is promoting the SEC" talk?  Why would the media care about the SEC more than any other conference?  The media is known for having a "big city, coastal" bias, so why would they change that notion for college football?  There is no logic there...

RRhodes4
RRhodes4

@Chessmastertheir bowl record speaks for itself.  What other conference distinguished itself this bowl season?  Only one I saw who did as well was ACC.  And a couple did not show well like the Big 10 (what else is new?), and PAC12.  If not for OU's win, Big 12 was a disaster.  Georgia does not get a bunch of key players hurt, and they win easily.  Add up each conference's bowl record.  Think you will see why the SEC continues to deliver.  Other conferences pass around who is 2nd best each year, except for Big 10, and the SEC just keeps on pumping out the bowl wins, inter-conference wins.  Want to really get depressed about the dominance, look at the NFL Draft lists.

OBloodyhell
OBloodyhell

@First1

Ummm, I think "winning in the bowl game", for the most part, is what the sports writers are using.

As I note above, AU mostly dominated FSU for the majority of that game. FSU did what it took to win, so kudos to them... but AU, a clear underdog, more than amply showed why they belonged there, too. Any honest assessment of the progress of that game shows it could readily have gone either way. So AU certainly deserved to remain in 2nd.

Alabama lost, and clearly it wasn't close, so they dropped from 3rd to 7th, which is actually pretty typical poll drop for something that wasn't a total embarrassment. And all the other SEC teams in the top 25 won their bowl games.

RRhodes4
RRhodes4

@JamesDunncould have happened had their entire conference not been embarrassing in Dec and January.  Only other bowl win was NE against a totally injury depleted GA team.  When you can finish .500 as a conference, that might work to give your team the #2 ranking, or had FSU beaten Auburn soundly, would have helped that, too.  Beating Stanford was nice, but I saw the Notre Dame/Stanford game and Stanford was not impressive at all.  Do like your coach, but Auburn was one pass away from being National Champs, the only team that gave FSU a game.  Note that Clemson, who could not compete with FSU, beat Ohio St.  Think those are the things stopping any perception of high quality for the Big 10.  Going to have to run the table to finish 1 or 2.  Strength of schedule just kills your conference's #1 team for now.

leslierb54
leslierb54

@JamesDunnExactly!  I even think MSU would have beat FSU.  But, FSU went undefeated so they deserve the #1 spot.

RRhodes4
RRhodes4

@zeebaneighbaor beat all the Big 10 teams on their schedule, like someone does every year inside the Big 10.  Name a very good team MSU beat.  I saw Stanford barely beat ND, so they are suspect.  Ohio St could not beat Clemson, who FSU, trounced.  Wisconsin could not beat SC, likely the 4th or 5th best SEC team.  If anyone deserved #2 ahead of Auburn it is OU.  They beat a good team.

RRhodes4
RRhodes4

@mcmilchcheck bowl records for every conference over past 8 years.  This thing next year will be 4 conference winners, so someone will get left out.  Based on recent embarrassments in nat'l title games, and too many 1 and 2 win bowl years, appears that that setting up to be the Big 10.  This year, would have been SEC, Big 12, Big 10 and ACC.  Now, I can hear the PAC12 screaming, so maybe they have a point and take the place of the Big 12 or Big 10.  No way Auburn and FSU were "given" anything, they both learned where they were, and then entertained us with a super game.  More than I can say about title games of SEC vs. Big 10.  you do recall those, right?

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

@ryanmoUM @mponeil15  That's what you get for playing in a weak Big-10 conference.

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

@UnassumingLocalGuy @VoiceoReason I think that is how it is supposed to be, every competitor should have a 'will to win'; you are correct.  The BAMA team was expected to three-peat, when they lost to AU, other factors took over.  My guess is that his linemen might have gotten a little tired of hearing about how great AJ was all the time, with them getting little to no attention.  Winning leads to apathy, narcissism, and other negative characteristic.  I love Saban, but next year will be tough.  Same thing for OSU, once the title hopes were over, "who care's" took over.  What was consistent about the OSU and BAMA losses? No motivation and lack of blocking.  Carlos Hyde had two tackles for loss all year and 3 in the first quarter... 

OBloodyhell
OBloodyhell

@JoshPeller"Notre Dame should be 75th at best, how can you have 5 SEC teams in top 7 after a solid but unspectacular bowl effort.  "

First -- can you count? 5 is not the same as 4. Just to call attention to this error.

Second -- On what planet is  7 wins out of 10 games -- and one of those three losses a buzzer-beater down to the wire loss -- an "unspectacular" bowl effort? Most conferences would be happy to have THREE teams in the bowls. The SEC had TEN. And 7 out of 10 wins even though the presence of AU in the NC game "imbalanced" their opponent -- USC was not better than 4th, and arguably 5th, in the SEC -- but played the #3 team in the Big Lebenty-Seven.

As a Gator, I'm hardly an AU homer, and damned sure not an FSU homer -- but, if "Alabama was the better team in the Iron Bowl, AU just got lucky with their kick return", what does that say about FSU's win?

No, that's not an effort to deny FSU its win. I'm just saying if you heard people say AU was "lucky" and said nothing, then why so silent NOW after FSU did much the same thing? Auburn mostly dominated FSU for the majority of that game -- but, as with the Iron Bowl,  FSU did do what it needed to keep the game close, made the plays it needed to win in the end. But AU more than amply showed it had every business being in that game -- much more so than Alabama did vs. OU.

FSU won, pure and simple. Luck is always a part of the game, as are "if..."s.

fivedollarwill
fivedollarwill

@VoiceoReason@ChessmasterThere are about 2.25 billion dollars in revenue waiting for ESPN in their 15 year deal with the SEC in launching the SEC Network. That's a lot of logic. Also, ESPN has the rights to air all BCS games so ESPN will definitely make more money if SEC teams are in BCS bowls. Next year there will be a 4-team playoff which, considering the useless and overly-important pre-season rankings, will give the SEC an even greater chance of winning the National Championship. Somehow I doubt that was an accident.

OBloodyhell
OBloodyhell

@RRhodes4@Chessmaster

Indeed -- 7 of 10 wins and one damned-near 6th **consecutive** NC win... yeah, it really SUCKS to be in the SEC. It's all a put up job by the media.

That envious green color, CM, does not suit you.

OBloodyhell
OBloodyhell

@RRhodes4@JamesDunn"Do like your coach, but Auburn was one pass away from being National Champs, the only team that gave FSU a game."

Or one kick. They missed that stupid chip-shot  FG, too. And one good block in that kick return and who knows what follows, too?

FSU won -- no dispute -- but AU showed that they had every right to be there. As RR notes, they are the only team that FSU played so far who seriously challenged FSU. And arguing that MSU might have beaten FSU is blowing smoke, you have nothing to base that on. MSU did not manhandle OSU, who did get soundly beaten by Clemson, a team that FSU just trashed... and  the SEC's #4 or #5 team, USC, also beat them. No, "games are not transitive" -- but the SEC's 70% bowl record shows they aren't just a 1 or 2 team league, any more this year than years in the past. In fact, MSU is the only team in the entire conference with a good record against ranked teams.

TimStegink
TimStegink

@RRhodes4 @zeebaneighba I am a huge Michigan State fan and my bias said they should be #2, but their strength of schedule went to crap.  I'm cannot and will not say whether we could have beat FSU or Auburn.  I would like to think the defense would at least made it a good game.  Michigan State being number 3 wasn't their fault or a knock on them, it was the Big Ten's fault.  

UnassumingLocalGuy
UnassumingLocalGuy

@UleNotknow@mponeil15Seeing as the only game MSU played between this poll and the last one was defeating the Pac-12 champion Stanford, this may be the most meaningless conference dig ever.

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

To be smart about this topic, you need to look at 2 factors: 1) The motivation of the teams; the Buckeyes & BAMA had no real reason to win, their National Championship hopes were already crushed.  2) How teams won or lost their respective games; Auburn won 3 games on the last play of the game.   BAMA has not played a game without National Title importance since they lost to Utah (another bowl game that did NOT matter)

VoiceoReason
VoiceoReason

@UnassumingLocalGuy @OBloodyhell @RRhodes4 @JamesDunn If the team ranking is a 'fix', does that mean recruiting class rankings are fixed too?  They seem to be closely related; teams with strong recruiting classes seem to have better results.  Now that I think about it, the NFL draft board must be fixed too... 

UnassumingLocalGuy
UnassumingLocalGuy

@OBloodyhell@RRhodes4@JamesDunn 

Says: "Games are not transitive" after arguing his point on that very logic.

And to be fair, when half of your conference teams are ranked, it makes it a bit easier to have more teams with a "good record against ranked teams."