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Week 2 College Football Power Rankings

College football conference power rankings heading into Week 2 of the season. It was a rough opening weekend for the Pac-12 and SEC; let's check where they slot out in the rankings.

So, which Power Five conference is truly the most powerful in college football? It's a highly fluid process, but verdicts are beginning to form now that the first week of results are in. And determining conference pecking order transcends the triviality of regional bragging rights. It could impact the selections of the College Football Playoff committee, which must decide the league champ - or two - that's on the outside looking in when berths are released Dec. 6. 

5. Pac-12

Not much to see here. At least not through the opening week of 2016. 

The Pac-12 had chances, but failed to capitalize. The two L.A. schools sort of encapsulated the league's current state, with UCLA losing at Texas A&M in OT and USC getting eviscerated by Alabama, 52-6.

Stanford took care of K-State and Washington looked good battering Rutgers, but the Pac-12 was 7-5, including losses to Eastern Washington, BYU and Minnesota.

The conference is dealing with a familiar problem - there's muscle up North, but upward conference mobility rests on the South, where no teams are presently ranked. 

4. Big 12

Now that Oklahoma has bowed to Houston, will the Big 12 have a signature program it can polish up and present to the College Football Playoff committee?

The Sooners' loss at NRG Stadium dented the overall brand, though the league did get a big boost from Texas' win over Notre Dame and West Virginia handling Mizzou. 

Otherwise, it was a mixed bag of unanswered questions on a weekend that half of the Big 12 schools hosted FCS programs. One of those second-tier squads, Northern Iowa, knocked off Iowa State. Kansas State got a shot to make waves on Friday, but lacked the offensive execution to outscore Stanford. 

3. SEC

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The SEC went 6-6 in non-conference games, and it was uglier than the record indicates.

No one is tougher than the Southeastern Conference. It used to be one of those college football doctrines you could bank on every fall. But times are changing. 

LSU failed to show up at Lambeau and Kentucky and Mississippi State were Group of Five victims.

Even when the league copped a W, it came with an asterisk, like Tennessee, Arkansas and Florida laboring to escape Appalachian State, Louisiana Tech and UMass, respectively.

The silver lining keeping the SEC from plummeting further: Bama crushed USC, A&M knocked UCLA from the Top 25 and Georgia rallied behind Nick Chubb to topple North Carolina

2. ACC

The two heavyweights took care of business. Whether or not the ACC can climb a rung higher depends squarely on how well the conference's other dozen teams perform moving forward. 

As usual, it was Clemson and  Florida State carrying the ACC banner in Week 1. The Tigers held off Auburn at Jordan-Hare, while the Seminoles used a furious second-half rally to jet past Ole Miss.

In the other showcase game with the SEC, Carolina couldn't protect a lead against Georgia. The rest of the league treated Week 1 like exhibition games, emptying the benches in routs of overmatched FCS and Group of Five opponents. The lone flub occurred in Charlottesville, where UVA lost to Richmond. 

1. Big Ten

This is all you, Wisconsin

The Big Ten has been flirting with the top spot for a while, but the Badgers' upset of fifth-ranked LSU put the league over the top for the time being. Ohio State and Michigan are already national contenders, and Michigan State is a perennial 10-win lock. But if Wisconsin joins Iowa in beefing up the West Division, the Big Ten instantly becomes more formidable.

Still, there's a lot to prove in September. Everyone else faced tissue-soft openers, except Rutgers, which was no match for Washington, and Northwestern, which lost to the MAC's Western Michigan. 

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