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Thoughts on the AP Poll

Duke Receives Votes for the First Time Since 1995

Saturday’s 42-17 victory over Virginia has earned Duke votes in the AP Poll. Way down at the bottom under receiving votes, Duke is technically ranked No. 37 after receiving three votes in the poll. Now admittedly, all three votes came from one voter, but it’s still the first time Duke has garnered votes in the AP Poll since the end of the 1994 season, which incidentally was also the last time they reached a bowl game. After a strong 5-1 start, the team is right behind Miami for first place in the Coastal Division and the rest of the country is beginning to take notice. Should the Blue Devils pull out a victory at Virginia Tech next Saturday, expect Duke in the Top 25 next week.

Shakeup in the Top-5

Three of the top-5 teams lost Saturday, the first time that’s happened since 2008. Former No. 3 Florida State was upset in the final minute at N.C. State 17-16 to fall to No. 12, then-No. 4 LSU fell five spots after losing at then-No. 10 Florida 14-6, and the previous No. 5 Georgia dropped nine spots after being routed 35-7 by then-No. 6 South Carolina. Now, following the consensus top two teams of Alabama and Oregon are No. 3 South Carolina, No. 4 Florida, and No. 5 West Virginia, who won a shootout in Texas 48-45. This weekend’s slate of games promises to shake up the order once again, as South Carolina travels to LSU in a battle of top-10 teams while No. 7 Notre Dame could climb into the top-5 if it can take care of business against No. 17 Stanford.

New Potential BCS Buster

Heading into the season, the Ohio Bobcats were widely perceived as this year’s team from a non-BCS conference to run the table and earn a BCS bowl invite, especially after they upset Penn State in their first game of the season. However, despite starting the season 6-0, the Bobcats have had to mount late game rallies in each of their past two games. In doing so, Ohio left the door open for another team from a non-BCS conference to potentially earn a BCS bowl berth. Thus, following impressive victories over Illinois and Virginia to start the season 5-0, Louisiana Tech of the WAC is now the favorite to crash the BCS party. Behind their high-powered offense, the Bulldogs have scored at least 44 points in every game this season, and this week jumped into the AP Poll at No. 23. However, Louisiana Tech's sternest test of the season is this week when No. 22 Texas A&M comes to town. If the Bulldogs can knock off the Aggies and finish the season undefeated, they could finish in the top-12, which would guarantee the team a BCS berth.


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