Stanford nearly joined those two in suffering a first loss, but showed some gumption to force overtime and then outlast Southern Cal.
Oklahoma was the benefactor of the ripple effect, moving back into my Top 10 with the impressive rout of K-State.
Other than that shuffling, the top of my poll was pretty unaffected. Oregon and Boise State are still hovering on the fringes of the national championship hunt and Arkansas is creeping into the mix as well.
Oct. 30 AP poll
1. LSU (8-0): Even during a bye week, the Tigers and Crimson Tide more or less dominated the headlines. Finally, game week is here.
2. Alabama (8-0): See above. Not enough separating these two to come up with something different to say.
|Justin Blackmon and Oklahoma State moved up to the No. 3 hole|
4. Stanford (8-0): Slight dip for the Cardinal in my poll because its first test of the season resulted in a B-/C+ performance.
5. Oregon (7-1): Ducks' streak of games with 41-plus points reached seven (ever since the LSU loss), although the defense showed some flaws vs. Wazoo.
6. Boise State (7-0): Broncos still need a lot of help and a ground swell of support to claim a spot as a real national championship contender.
7. Arkansas (7-1): Razorbacks are lucky to still be a one-loss team, but that's just the kind of game that can refocus a team.
8. Oklahoma (7-1): Sooners removed any doubt about whether they deserve to remain on the fringe of the conversation of elite teams this season by dismantling K-State.
9. Virginia Tech (8-1): The good news for the Hokies is that ugly wins and impressive ones count just the same. Still a lot of work to do to flush the Clemson loss, but Tech may get a second chance.
10. South Carolina (7-1): The Gamecocks' transformation from an offensive powerhouse to defensive stalwart appears complete.
11. Nebraska (7-1): The Cornhuskers Dr. Jekyll-Mr. Hyde act took a major step forward last week against Michigan State. Who shows up in back-to-back road games at Penn State at Michigan?
12. Michigan (7-1): Getting back on the horse against Purdue was easy. Staying there the next two weeks on the road against beatable teams is vital.
13. Georgia (6-2): Bulldogs are on track for a spot in the SEC Championship Game if they hold serve and South Carolina stumbles. Who'd a thunk it at 0-2?
14. Penn State (8-1): Hard to argue with the results. Hard to watch how the Nittany Lions get there.
15. Arizona State (6-2): Sun Devils are in prime position to get a shot at playing spoiler against Stanford or Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship Game.
|Quarterback Tevin Washington sparked Georgia Tech to a 31-17 triumph that ended Clemson's undefeated season.|
17. Clemson (8-1): Tigers' defensive problems finally came back to bite them, and this time the offense couldn't bail them out.
18. Michigan State (6-2): It was probably too much to expect for the Spartans to get through October unscathed. But 24-3? Yeesh.
19. Wisconsin (6-2): Two botched deep coverages in the closing seconds separate the Badgers from being in the penthouse. But UW shouldn't have been in close-call situations to begin with.
20. Houston (8-0): If Case Keenum can keep tossing more TD passes than the Cougars have wins, they could be OK.
21. Cincinnati (6-1): Tis good to be king, even in the Big East. But if there's a such thing as a tough stretch in that league, the Bearcats are about to embark on it with a road game at Pitt.
22. USC (6-2): Trojans went toe-to-toe with Stanford and probably should've gotten a chance to win in regulation. Shouldas and couldas don't matter much, though.
23. West Virginia (6-2): Mountaineers looked more like the Big East favorite in the second half last week. They still need to find some consistency, though.
24. Kansas State (7-1): Wildcats got de-pantsed in front of the whole country last week and don't get a lot of time to pout this week with a road game at Oklahoma State.
25. Southern Miss (7-1): Golden Eagles don't face another Conference USA team that currently has a winning record. Could wind up being a special season for the Eagles.
DROPPED OUT: Texas A&M