One of the amazing things about college football is how conservative and similar most opinions are.
Especially when it comes to polls.
The vast majority of poll voters somehow end up believing the exact same thing.
Because it’s better to be wrong when everyone else is also wrong than be wrong standing alone.
Not surprisingly, I don’t subscribe to this theory.
I happen to believe that Auburn and Missouri would beat Ohio State on a neutral field which is why I have both of these teams ranked above Ohio State. I truly one hundred billion percent believe that Mizzou and Auburn are better than Ohio State so my poll looks different than most.
You know how crazy my top ten is? I have Ohio State three entire spots below where most other human pollsters have them. (And at a similar position to many BCS computers which mostly have Auburn ranked above Ohio State). Yet if you hop on Twitter and read the reaction to my honest opinion about who the best teams in the country are I AM WILD AND CRAZY AND STUPID AND GAY AND SOOOO BIASED.
Seriously, go read my mentions the moment I Tweet this out.
It’s amazing to me the group herd thought when it comes to college football — the vast majority of people want to have the exact same opinion as everyone else and woe unto you if you disagree.
With that said, let’s get rolling on Outkick’s national top ten.
The Crimson Tide is the unquestioned best team in college football, but Alabama also has a terribly difficult finishing schedule — on the road at Auburn and then probably Missouri in the SEC title game.
Can the Tide keep rolling?
2. Florida State
The Seminoles go on the road at Florida this weekend before playing a vastly inferior team in the ACC title game.
But the biggest threat to Florida State’s season remains an open sexual assault investigation.
Welcome to college football morality, where you’d have to drop the Seminoles below one of these other teams if the starting quarterback gets charged with a felony.
Mizzou has won every game this year by 14 or more points except for the South Carolina game, which the Tigers gave away after being up 17-0 entering the fourth quarter.
The Tigers are for real and I think they’ll beat Texas A&M to finish the regular season 11-1.
If Auburn beats Alabama and then takes down Missouri, would a 12-1 Auburn record be more impressive than a 13-0 Ohio State.
I think it would.
The same holds true, by the way, for 12-1 Missouri.
5. Ohio State
The Buckeyes will have a chance to make a statement in the final two weeks of the season with Michigan and Michigan State on the schedule.
You want to know how strained the morality of college football fandom is? Ohio State stands to benefit more than any other team if Winston is charged with a felony.
And, by the way, to be fair here, can you imagine if Urban Meyer’s star quarterback was being investigated for felony sexual assault and still playing like Winston is right now? Urban Meyer would get roasted beyond belief. I haven’t heard a single person direct any criticism at Jimbo Fisher.
6. Oklahoma State
The single most inexplicable loss of the college football season is Oklahoma State’s collapse at West Virginia.
Otherwise Oklahoma State might well be ranked above Florida State.
The Bears took one on the chin in Stillwater.
But they’re still going to finish 11-1 on the season.
8. South Carolina
The second most inexplicable loss of the college football season?
South Carolina’s loss at Tennessee.
How in the world did this happen? I still have no idea.
9. Michigan State
The Spartans are playing really well on both sides of the ball.
Granted, their best win all season is over Iowa on the road and they did lose to Notre Dame, but the offense is coming along in East Lansing.
This should be an interesting Big Ten title game against Ohio State.
Clemson doesn’t have a single top 25 BCS win, but the Tigers get a chance to finish with 11 wins if they can go on the road at South Carolina and end Steve Spurrier’s dominance in the rivalry.
Can they get the road win?
I don’t think so.
Outkick’s SEC Power Rankings:
Still rolling in the midst of a dynasty, but smart Bama fans — they exist, really — are nervous about what Gus Malzahn has brewing this weekend on the Plains.
Regardless of the result, Mizzou and Texas A&M will finish their second full year at a combined19-13 overall in the SEC.
Can Mizzou seal the deal and advance to Atlanta or will there be more misery on the horizon?
I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen at Jordan-Hare on Saturday.
Want a wild stat?
Gus Malzahn is 6-1 in his first SEC year. The rest of the first year SEC coaches — Butch Jones, Bret Bielema, and Mark Stoops — are a combined 1-20 in the SEC this year.
4. South Carolina
Steve Spurrier can win ten games for his third straight regular season if the Gamecocks take down Clemson.
I think it happens, further burnishing Spurrier’s record as the second greatest SEC coach of all time. (Behind Bear Bryant and just above General Neyland).
That would give the Gamecocks out of conference wins over Clemson, Central Florida, and North Carolina. That’s the most impressive out of conference performance in the country this year.
Give John Chavis, the best defensive coordinator in the SEC, credit — he’s shut down Johnny Manziel for two consecutive years.
No one else in the SEC has managed that.
In a rebuilding year for LSU, nine wins isn’t that bad for the Mad Hatter.
6. Texas A&M
The Aggie defense is just awful.
Without Johnny Manziel what’s A&M’s record this year? 6-6? Worse?
Manziel gets a final showcase game at Missouri. Will the Aggies show up?
Aaron Murray tore his ACL yesterday against Kentucky.
Georgia’s bad luck this season is truly mind-boggling.
Want a second wild stat? Every starting SEC quarterback but Zach Mettenberger, Bo Wallace, and AJ McCarron has either been knocked out of a game with an injury or missed a start.
That’s 11 out of 14.
8. Ole Miss
The Rebels should finish with eight wins in Hugh Freeze’s second season.
That’s good, not great.
And if Ole Miss stubbed its toe against Mississippi State? Well, 7-5 would be quite the disappointment.
Ho hum, James Franklin’s Commodores are going to post back-to-back 8-4 seasons and beat Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee in the same year for the first time in school history.
Vandy also beat Tennessee in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 1925-26.
The big question’s this, will Franklin return to West End next season with all the big jobs opening up?
10. Mississippi State
Dan Mullen notched an overtime win over winless in the SEC Arkansas. Give him an extension!
Now State can salvage a disappointing season by beating Ole Miss and becoming bowl eligible.
It’s been an ugly first year for Butch Jones on the field. Off the field, Jones’s recruiting has been stellar, currently ranked number two in the nation. But would any of that recruiting momentum dry up with a road loss at Kentucky? Look out, Vols, the first eight loss season in program history could happen.
Phil Fulmer won ten games the year before UT fired him.
How far away are ten wins from happening again?
Florida lost at home to Georgia Southern.
Seriously, that happened.
Will Muschamp’s going to go 4-8 at Florida in his third year with the job.
Pay attention to how many FSU fans are in the Swamp doing the Tomahawk chop this Saturday. It’s going to be the most ever. Lots of Gator fans are ready for Muschamp to be let go.
Will he be?
Boy, it’s a mess in Gainesville.
The Wildcats are very bad.
But they have a chance to make the season a success by beating Tennessee for the second time in three seasons on Saturday.
It could happen.
The Razorbacks are 0-8 since Jen Bielema Tweeted #karma in the wake of Wisconsin’s loss at Arizona State
You think Bielema wishes he hadn’t left Wisconsin, yet?