AP Top 25: Cincinnati and Oklahoma rise, Iowa falls in Week 8 college football rankings

The latest AP Top 25 poll is out, and it’s a weekly reminder that we know nothing about the best college football teams in the country.

There are three fundamental laws of thermodynamics and we can adapt those to the 2021 AP Top 25. Let’s call them the three fundamental laws of AP Rankings.

  1. Conservation of order: there will always be a Top 25;
  2. Entropy: as season progresses, the rankings are going to get nutty;
  3. Equilibrium: as we get into the colder weather, the Top 25 approach a constant.

We won’t know until we get more data if these will hold for all post-2020 years, but they look pretty conclusive.

All that said, let’s look at the Week 8 AP Top 25.

College Football Rankings: AP Top 25 poll, Week 8

  1. Georgia
  2. Cincinnati
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Alabama
  5. Ohio State
  6. Michigan
  7. Penn State
  8. Oklahoma State
  9. Michigan State
  10. Oregon
  11. Iowa
  12. Ole Miss
  13. Notre Dame
  14. Coastal Carolina
  15. Kentucky
  16. Wake Forest
  17. Texas A&M
  18. NC State
  19. Auburn
  20. Baylor
  21. SMU
  22. San Diego State
  23. Pitt
  24. UTSA
  25. Purdue

The biggest, most necessary change in this week’s Top 25 is Iowa’s fall. The Hawkeye’s lofty ranking was built on two wins against Indiana (now 2-4) and Iowa State (4-2 without a noteworthy win) are looking less than stellar. It seemed only a matter of time before their offensive deficiencies got them in trouble. We just didn’t know it would be Purdue that pulled their card.

Kentucky pulled off a backdoor cover against Georgia, who is starting to look like they might not need an elite quarterback to run an efficient offense. After Florida’s loss to LSU, it doesn’t look like the Bulldogs will play another ranked team until the SEC Championship.

Elsewhere, the shine is off the apple for BYU and Arkansas, which suffered their second and third consecutive losses, respectively. And while struggles against unranked opponents didn’t hurt Michigan State or San Diego State, they are officially on notice.

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