The Top Whatever, where only like 12 college football teams really need to be ranked at the moment – SB Nation

She’s number one this week.

This is just, like, CLASSIC Stace here. I don’t know if her name is Stacey, actually, but this … this feels like a Stacey move. This was also lucky. The only team in the game that had someone run out on the field to celebrate won, 71-68, after seven overtimes in the new highest-scoring game ever. You did it, Stace. YOU DID IT.

A deceptive, 28-14 win over Wake Forest, for a lot of reasons, and in a lot of directions.

In the positive sense for Clemson: The score is closer than the game actually played. Clemson leaped out to a early lead and slowed down a bit, Wake Forest has been pretty stout defensively, and the Tigers turned the ball over twice. Add all that up, and the Tigers can feel better about a game they controlled despite a lackluster scoreboard result.

In the negative sense, Clemson starting QB Kelly Bryant hobbled around in a walking boot with a sprained ankle.

P.S. Wake Forest is cruising to a lead in the “Most Respectable Losses” column for the year. Also leading in the “Most Outrageously Wide Field Goal Attempts” category.

If you’re gonna miss, miss big

Beat Florida State, 24-20. Remember that the Top Whatever basically ranks the teams with the best possible records based on how they did this week and this week alone. That’s how we find an excuse to put the Canes way up here. Not only are they undefeated, but they found a way to beat their most bitter rival in their own stadium in the most bitter fashion imaginable.

Imagine, a WIDE receiver on the RIGHT spelling doom for Florida State

We should all thank Mark Richt for going for the win when other coaches might have just squatted on field position, waited on a field goal to tie, and taken their chances at overtime. You know what a good way to not lose in overtime on the road is? TO NOT HAVE AN OVERTIME AND WIN IN REGULATION AND JUST BREAK SOME HEARTS AND MINDS WHILE YOU’RE AT IT.

Miami might not be one of the best football programs in the nation, but they are definitely one of the best this week, and that and Miami fans showing off all that hard offseason work in the gym AND the tattoo parlor is more than enough for us.

Oooh, look, A&M made Alabama bleed their own blood. The final was 27-19, but the thing everyone needs to know coming out of this genuine fight at Kyle Field is this: Alabama was up 24-3 at one point, futzed around, got real resistance, and didn’t finish the way Nick Saban likes teams to finish. (They even messed up multiple punts. PUNTS, DAMMIT.)

When Alabama doesn’t finish the way Nick Saban likes teams to finish, Nick Saban starts hissing about “poison” in postgame press conferences. He also makes a face like this.


Oh, it’s going to be a bad week for the Golden Flake Kicking Dog at the Alabama facilities this week, especially because loading the box and daring Alabama QB Jalen Hurts to pass worked, for the most part. (Doubt that there is an official, sponsored, and specially bred dog for Saban to kick in times of crisis at your own peril.)

P.S. Saban, in that postgame press conference, says “We’re not gonna win every game 66-3.” Alabama plays Arkansas next week, a team that just lost by 26 points to South Carolina. Alabama will probably win 66-3 next week. Saban will be infuriated by the field goal.

A 31-24 victory over West Virginia. All TCU does is confuse the hell out of opposing offenses, get timely production, and somehow turn opposing strengths into weaknesses.

If this sounds cracked, consider that TCU has already:

  • Won a shootout against SMU, a team that prides itself on tempo.
  • Beaten Oklahoma State, an offensive powerhouse, with offense.
  • Outlasted a West Virginia that outgained the Horned Frogs by a hundred yards (508 to 406) and had 12 more first downs (28 to 16) on the day.

When asked about TCU’s defense after the game, West Virginia QB Will Grier said: “They didn’t do anything that we thought they were going to do.” That’s TCU right now, the most deliberately confusing good team in America.

A 33-10 road win over Oregon, which was good because Wazzu played well on the road, and also weird because Wazzu kicked four field goals? They also relied heavily on defense, and that’s all fine, because somehow we’re here talking about a 6-0 Washington State in early October.

Oregon did have the coolest strip/punch-out you will see all year, and for a team missing their starting quarterback due to injury, that will have to do.


A mostly forgettable, 31-7 win over Northwestern. That’s not Penn State’s fault. No one should remember anything about this Northwestern team. The moment when Saquon Barkley decided to stop pretending he was mortal was pretty cool, though.

Destroyed Vanderbilt, 45-14. Georgia let Vandy do nothing while rushing for 423 yards of offense, making Vandy look like vintage Vandy.

I know, as Americans we enjoy making our emotions into facts and creating our own realities. I’m not immune: For at least 14 minutes in 2015, I believed Jim McElwain was going to turn Florida around. That said, we might have to all take a deep breath and be honest about all of the following things:

  • This Georgia team is very good, easily the second best team in the SEC.
  • The Florida team that would’ve otherwise been due for ruining UGA’s season just got a transitive loss to Troy.
  • A Saban assistant was hired in the SEC East and did … well?
  • The only game left on the schedule with any real menace is Auburn.

Given the history of the Auburn-Georgia rivalry, the only definite outcomes are pain, confusion, and a few arrests the family lawyer will have to help plea out in court the week after the game. Say it with me: “Your honor, Thad Livingston Maisewell is sorry about stealing that boat, and since he was emotional from the football game, and because it is his first offense—-”

An efficient, 38-7 win over Cal. Efficient a word you use to describe a game in which the Huskies defense only allowed 93 yards, and in which Jake Browning ran an option keeper in for a TD on fourth-and-2 because he could, probably while laughing. The schedule still sucks, which isn’t their fault, but it does kick in one entertaining possibility: a Huskies team that has to pull for Washington State to get to the Apple Cup undefeated.

Defeated Nebraska, 38-17. A confession: I swear Wisconsin lost a game already. They haven’t, but if Wisconsin misses out on the Playoff, let’s go ahead and blame it on The Mandela Effect and a loss to TCU in Week 2 that never happened.

Won 41-10 over UNLV. Well, let’s just see how this went and —

— yes, yes, it went just fine.

51-23 over Cincinnati in just three quarters. You might want to stay the hell away from UCF right now.

A 48-45 win over Air Force in which Navy only rushed for 471 yards. ONLY.


Um, yeah. Michigan.


There are still two undefeated teams in the state of Washington alone. In other words: It’s still too damn early for that.

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