AP Top 25: Takeaways From Week 3 Poll

The AP Top 25 for Week 3 was released Sunday afternoon. Here are some takeaways following another crazy weekend in college football.

Following one of the greatest opening weekends in college football history, many expected Week 2 to be less dramatic with no AP Top 25 teams matched up against each other. Well, that definitely wasn’t the case. Oklahoma State lost – kind of – on the final play to Central Michigan. Arkansas knocked off TCU in double overtime, and both Clemson and Georgia struggled against inferior foes.

Here are some instant AP Top 25 takeaways from the newest edition of the poll.

Here comes Louisville

Lamar Jackson has accounted for 13 touchdowns and more than 1,000 yards of total offense in two games. Welcome to the Heisman Trophy race, Lamar. Thanks in large part to Jackson’s production, the Cardinals have jumped into the AP top 10 for the first time since October of 2013. For their reward, they get to host new No. 2 Florida State in an early ACC showdown with ESPN’s College GameDay in town. The real test will be if Jackson can penetrate a tough Seminoles’ defense. If he does and Louisville comes out on top, it will put itself directly into the College Football Playoff discussion.

Get ready for another exciting weekend

The opening weekend featured multiple marquee matchups that didn’t disappoint. Last week wasn’t expected to be nearly as exciting with no AP Top 25 teams facing off against each other, but Oklahoma State-Central Michigan and Arkansas-TCU, among others, made us realize we shouldn’t take any weekend of college football for granted. 

Expect much of the same in Week 3. Top-ranked Alabama visits No. 19 Ole Miss, which has won the last two meetings and beat the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa last year. No. 2 Florida State visits Lamar Jackson and No. 10 Louisville. No. 12 Michigan State travels to South Bend to face No. 18-ranked Notre Dame, a matchup that has produced plenty of thrilling moments. And in what has the potential to be the best game of the weekend, No. 3 Ohio State visits No. 14 Oklahoma.

Clemson, Georgia slip

Clemson’s two lackluster victories haven’t impressed the voters, who dropped it down from No. 2 to No. 5. The Tigers weren’t sharp on opening weekend at Auburn, then DeShaun Watson struggled to get the offense going in last week’s unimpressive 30-24 win over Troy. It might just be a minor blip, but Clemson will need to pull itself together before ACC picks up.

Georgia took an even bigger dive. The Bulldogs moved up to No. 9 after beating North Carolina on opening weekend, but they needed a couple of Nick Chubb first-down runs in the game’s final minutes to secure a 26-24 win over Nicholls, which entered as a 55-point underdog. That rough performance dropped Georgia all the way down to No. 16 heading into this week’s road game against Missouri, which just put up 61 points on Eastern Michigan. 

Two in, two out

Arkansas jumped into the rankings at No. 24 with that thrilling double-overtime victory over TCU, which seemed to have the game wrapped up on multiple occasions in regulation. As a result, the Horned Frogs fell out of the poll entirely from No. 15, as they also struggled to get past South Dakota State on opening weekend.

Florida beat Kentucky for the 30th consecutive time to get back in at No. 23 after falling out of the top 25 following Week 1. The Gators replace Oklahoma State, which had a victory stolen from it after Central Michigan’s miraculous touchdown on a Hail Mary version of the hook-and-ladder — a play that occurre on an untimed down that was incorrectly awarded by the officials.

SEC still rules

The SEC placed eight teams in this week’s poll, the eighth time in history the conference has accomplished the feat. LSU, which is up one spot to No. 20, might have a tough test against Mississippi State if Leonard Fournette’s ankle injury keeps him out for a second straight game.

The Big Ten has the second-most teams in the poll with five.

MORE: No. 1-128 College Football Rankings – Week 3