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Andy Wittry | | November 1, 2020

College football rankings: Cincinnati climbs, Oklahoma State and Michigan fall

AP poll breakdown: Cincinnati, BYU, Indiana are among this week's risers

Five ranked teams lost in Week 9, including No. 6 Oklahoma State, No. 13 Michigan and No. 15 North Carolina, which was bound to create some major shakeups in the latest AP Top 25 poll.

First, here's the latest AP poll:

2020 College football rankings: After Week 9
1 Clemson (33) 1,515 1 7-0
2 Alabama (29) 1,513 2 6-0
3 Ohio State 1,430 3 2-0
4 Notre Dame 1,351 4 6-0
5 Georgia 1,289 5 4-1
6 Cincinnati 1,199 7 5-0
7 Texas A&M 1,156 8 4-1
8 Florida 1,066 10 3-1
9 BYU 1,014 11 7-0
10 Wisconsin 985 9 1-0
11 Miami (Fla.) 946 12 5-1
12 Oregon 831 14 0-0
13 Indiana 765 17 2-0
14 Oklahoma State 760 6 4-1
15 Coastal Carolina 527 20 6-0
16 Marshall 523 19 5-0
17 Iowa State 427 23 4-2
18 SMU 420 22 6-1
19 Oklahoma 405 24 4-2
20 Southern California 354 21 0-0
21 Boise State 336 25 2-0
22 Texas 190 NR 4-2
23 Michigan 151 13 1-1
24 Auburn 144 NR 4-2
25 Liberty 118 NR 6-0

Others receiving votes: Northwestern 106, Louisiana-Lafayette 101, North Carolina 92, Penn State 87, Tulsa 73, Army 57, Kansas State 51, West Virginia 44, Utah 44, Washington 21, Purdue 15, Virginia Tech 11, San Diego State 8, Arizona State 7, Appalachian State 6, Wake Forest 5, Michigan State 4, California 3

Here are's takeaways from the latest poll and what the rankings mean going forward.

Josh Morgan | USA TODAY Sports Images Clemson's Amari Rodgers.

No. 1 Clemson survives scare

Without star quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who tested positive for COVID-19, No. 1 Clemson found itself trailing by as many as 18 points against unranked Boston College on Saturday. But freshman D.J. Uiagalelei, who filled in for Lawrence, and Travis Etienne rallied the Tigers's offense, while their defense shut out the Eagles after halftime. Uiagalelei finished 30-for-41 for 342 yards and two touchdowns, plus a 30-yard touchdown run, while Etienne had 224 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns.

No. 2 Alabama entered last weekend ranked one spot behind Clemson and the Crimson Tide handed Mississippi State coach Mike Leach the first shut out in his head coaching career, 41-0. Alabama's DeVonta Smith had a monstrous game, hauling in 11 receptions for 203 yards and four touchdowns, with most of that production coming in the first half.

After the win, Alabama cut the gap between it and Clemson in the AP poll as the Crimson Tide received just two fewer points than the Tigers.

Overall, the top five teams remained in the same order as last week: No. 1 Clemson, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 4 Notre Dame and No. 5 Georgia.

Sarah Phipps | USA TODAY Sports Images Texas beat Oklahoma State in overtime.

The Big 12's last unbeaten falls

Oklahoma State entered Week 9 with a 4-0 record and the No. 6 ranking in the AP poll as the Cowboys were the last undefeated team in the Big 12. They fell 41-34 in overtime to Texas, after Oklahoma State forced OT with a field goal in the final 10 seconds of regulation. Th Cowboys dropped to No. 14, while the Longhorns returned to the AP poll at No. 22.

Now, No. 17 Iowa State and Kansas State are tied atop the conference standings, each with a 4-1 conference record, followed by Oklahoma State at 3-1, then No. 19 Oklahoma, Texas and West Virginia at 3-2. Every team in the Big 12 has lost at least once in conference play and the race to earn a spot in the conference championship game is wide open.

Kareem Elgazzar | Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY Sports Cincinnati beat Memphis 49-10.

Cincinnati moves up in the AP poll

The sixth-ranked Bearcats, who are now 5-0 after a 49-10 win over Memphis, are slowly inching towards their highest AP poll ranking since the 2009 season, when they reached No. 4 in the AP poll. The game was tied 7-7 through the first quarter before Cincinnati turned on the jets, fueled by quarterback Desmond Ridder's 21-for-26 passing performance for 271 yards and three touchdowns, plus he had two rushing touchdowns.

Cincinnati's defense held Memphis to 4-for-16 on third-down conversion attempts and 0-for-3 on fourth down.

History in the making for BYU, Indiana

After improving to 7-0 in Week 9, BYU climbed into the top 10 at No. 9, which is the Cougars' highest ranking since 2009, when they peaked at No. 7 in the AP poll. Not far behind BYU is No. 13 Indiana, which is 2-0 and tied atop the Big Ten East standings with Ohio State. The Hoosiers haven't been ranked that high in the AP poll since 1987, when Indiana went 8-4 and made the Peach Bowl under coach Bill Mallory.

It's also worth giving a shoutout to No. 15 Coastal Carolina, which continues to climb in the AP poll in its first season ever being ranked, and No. 16 Marshall, which hasn't been ranked that high since 2002. At No. 25, Liberty is also ranked for the first time in program history.

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