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Joe Boozell | NCAA.com | October 29, 2018

College football rankings: Washington State, Ohio State vault into AP's top 10

Alabama leads competition in AP Poll

Let's take a look at the last AP Top 25 poll of October:

RANK SCHOOL RECORD POINTS PREVIOUS
1 Alabama (60) 8-0 1,500 1
2 Clemson 8-0 1,433 2
3 Notre Dame 8-0 1,374 3
4 LSU 7-1 1,317 4
5 Michigan 7-1 1,240 5
6 Georgia 7-1 1,202 7
7 Oklahoma 7-1 1,132 8
8 Ohio State 7-1 1,022 11
9 UCF 7-0 1,014 10
10 Washington State 7-1 938 14
11 Kentucky 7-1 905 12
12 West Virginia 6-1 891 13
13 Florida 6-2 734 9
14 Penn State 6-2 733 17
15 Texas 6-2 719 6
16 Utah 6-2 593 23
17 Houston 7-1 403 NR
18 Utah State 7-1 340 NR
19 Iowa 6-2 323 18
20 Fresno State 7-1 261 NR
21 Mississippi State 5-3 204 NR
22 Syracuse 6-2 192 NR
23 Virginia 6-2 175 NR
24 Boston College 6-2 169 NR
25 Texas A&M 5-3 132 16

All things considered it was a fairly tame week, as the top five teams stayed the same. But Georgia notched a huge win over Florida on Saturday and rose one spot to No. 6.

While the Bulldogs didn’t make up a ton of ground in the poll, it was still a significant win. No. 4 LSU has to play Alabama next week. Even though the Tigers beat the Bulldogs, Georgia’s win over Florida may mean it would jump a two-loss LSU in the event that it falls to Alabama. That’s not a foregone conclusion, of course. But it’s something to keep in mind. LSU still might stay ahead of Georgia if it loses, but the Florida win gives the Bulldogs a fighting shot.

MORE: 5 Week 9 outcomes that could affect the CFP picture

Washington State was another team that rose. The Cougars are up to No. 10 after taking care of Stanford. Washington State is likely the Pac-12’s only shot at sending a team to the College Football Playoff.

Minshew leads Washington State in last-minute win

Gardner Minshew has been a revelation under center. He threw for 438 yards and three touchdowns on Saturday and now has a 26:6 touchdown to interception ratio on the year. While the Cougars have a lot of ground to make up to leap into the top four, they’re a scary group right now. The offense is absolutely lethal, with playmakers everywhere you look.

Ohio State rejoined the top 10 after a bye week as a result of a few teams ahead of the Buckeyes losing. One of them was Florida, which dropped four spots to No. 13. That feels a little harsh after losing to Georgia, but not much separates teams eight through 15 or so. Texas, which is the 15th team, had a really tough loss to Oklahoma State. The Longhorns were the Big 12’s most likely Playoff team coming into the week. As it always seems to turn out, that distinction now belongs to Oklahoma. Again, falling nine spots for losing to a good Oklahoma State team may seem excessive, but the competition is real in that part of the poll.

Kentucky gets the win on the last play of the game

Moving on down the rankings, a bunch of new teams joined the AP Top 25 this week. Seven, to be exact, which is the most in one week since 1989.

MORE: College football's top 25 re-ranked by offensive line weight

It’s quite impressive that No. 17 Houston and No. 18 Utah State went from unranked to inside the top 20 in a week, but that’s how good both of those schools have been lately. The Cougars put 57(!) points on then-No. 21 South Florida on Saturday, while Utah State put up 61 on New Mexico. It’s safe to say both of those offenses are in midseason form. Fresno State, another Group of Five school, is ranked 20th. It’s the time of year where Power Five teams are beating each other up week after week. Programs like Houston, Utah State and Fresno State deserve to be recognized, and it’s nice to see them get their due.

ALSO: How the first College Football Playoff rankings predict the semifinals

The top of the poll may not have had as much activity as weeks prior, but next week should be interesting with LSU and Alabama squaring off. The first College Football Playoff rankings reveal also happens on Tuesday. How much will they resemble the AP’s? It will be fascinating to find out.

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