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UCF becomes fourth Florida school to join AP Top 25

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A little more than one season removed from a winless season, the University of Central Florida Knights have returned the Associated Press Top 25 poll. A day after an impressive 40-13 romp over Memphis, UCF came in at No. 25.

The 3-0 Knights are one of four Florida teams in the top 25. It is their first time in the rankings since the end of the 2013 season.

Alabama, of course, hold the top spot with Clemson a respectable No. 2. The Crimson Tide earned 44 first place votes to 17 for the Tigers, up from 8 one week ago.

Oklahoma and Penn State hold onto the third and fourth spots, respectively, but Georgia surged to the No. 5 ranking.

The Miami Hurricanes moved up to the 13th spot after their 31-6 takedown of Duke. The South Florida Bulls’ rout of East Carolina did not impress AP voters. USF remained at the No. 18 position.

The Florida Gators’ 38-24 win over Vanderbilt was also shrugged off by voters. Florida remained in the No. 21 position.

Florida State’s narrow escape at Wake Forest, bringing them to 1-2 on the season was not enough to return the pre-season No. 3 team to the top 25.

With Mississippi State and LSU suffering humbling defeats on Saturday, both fell out of the top 25, leaving the SEC with only four teams in the group. They are the only conference, however, to have two teams in the top five.

While FSU did not make the cut, five ACC teams are now ranked. North Carolina State, 4-1, joined the rankings in the No. 24 slot. Notre Dame, officially an independent that plays several ACC teams, is ranked 21st.

The Big 12 and Pac 12 have four schools in the top 25 as does the Big 10, but all four are ranked in the top 10. USF and UCF represent the two teams from the American Athletic Conference, while No. 19 San Diego State is from the Mountain West.

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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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