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Big 10, SEC and ACC the top stories of AP Top 25 Poll

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To no one’s surprise, Ohio State remains the Number 1 team in the nation. The AP Top 25, voted on by the media, made it an all-Big 10 top two with Michigan State taking the second spot.

The AP voters clearly demonstrate the media view that the SEC is miles ahead of any other conference.  The ACC, on the other hand, continues to play the role of Rodney Dangerfield.

Mississippi’s rise to Number 3 (tied with TCU) is reminiscent of some of the wild swings from 2014 when SEC teams would make significant gains after beating one another. LSU is this week’s second example, climbing five spots to Number 8 after its romp over the formerly over-rated Auburn Tigers.

How does Georgia feel? All they did was beat a respectable opponent (South Carolina) at home by five touchdowns, yet they stay at Number 7 and watch Ole Miss fly by.

Alabama’s free-fall from Number 2 to Number 12 is therefore perplexing. Do the voters truly believe Alabama is not even among the 10 best teams in the country? Are they really casting them aside that quickly?

It is hard to imagine after reading or listening to them, especially ESPN, shower incessant praise on the team and Coach Nick Saban. Do they truly believe Ole Miss is the third best because of one game?

While the Tide and Southern California dropped big after home losses, three teams lost ground after winning: Missouri, Oregon and Florida State. Missouri was lackluster at home against big underdog Connecticut, while the Ducks dropped a spot while beating an overmatched opponent at home by 33 points.

The Seminoles, with an admittedly sputtering offense, still won on the road at a tough venue in Boston College. The Seminoles dropped from Number 9 to Number 10 in the AP Poll. The Amway Coaches Poll also dropped FSU a spot along with ACC rival Clemson after the Tigers’ close win at Louisville.

The ambivalence toward the traditional ACC was also illustrated by the treatment of Georgia Tech. The Golden Jackets made it close at the end on Saturday before losing at Notre Dame. While it is no disgrace to lose in South Bend, that defeat cost Georgia Tech six spots while Notre Dame climbed two positions to Number 6.

Among those out of the AP Top 25, Miami earned 13 votes while the Florida Gators had 7. Both teams are 3-0.

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Bob Sparks is President of Ramos and Sparks Group, a Tallahassee-based business and political consulting firm. During his career, he has directed media relations and managed events for professional baseball, served as chief spokesperson for the Republican Party of Florida as well as the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the Attorney General of Florida. After serving as Executive Deputy Chief of Staff for Governor Charlie Crist, he returned to the private sector working with clients including the Republican National Committee and political candidates in Japan. He lives in Tallahassee with his wife, Sue and can be reached at Bob@ramos-sparks.com.

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