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Thursday, September 29, 2022
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AP Top 25: A&M, Baylor Drop After Heartbreaking Losses


Appalachian State's Ahmani Marshall (3) celebrates a touchdown run with teammates against the Texas A&M Aggies. | Image by Thomas Shea/USA TODAY Sports

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Georgia overthrew Alabama for the top spot in the Associated Press Top 25 college football poll this week, while Kentucky, Oklahoma State, and Arkansas moved into the top 10 after an upset-filled weekend across the country.

It was not so much what Georgia did over the weekend that pushed them to the top spot — dispatching Samford 33-0 — but rather Alabama needing a field goal in the last seconds to scrape by now-No.21 Texas with a 20-19 win, that dropped them to No.2.

Alabama entered Austin as a 21.5-point favorite against the then-unranked Longhorns, according to Caesar’s Sportsbook.

The game was much closer than many expected, despite the Longhorns losing starting quarterback Quinn Ewers to a left clavicle injury late in the first quarter. He had completed 9 of 12 passes for 134 yards.

Alabama quarterback and defending Heisman Trophy winner, Bryce Young, who threw for 213 yards and a touchdown and added 38 yards rushing on seven carries, came through when it mattered most. His 20-yard scramble into Texas territory with less than two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter set up the game-winning 33-yard field goal.

The Longhorns were rewarded for their effort, becoming what is believed to be the first team to lose and still enter the Top 25 since Missouri did it in 1997.

Ohio State, Michigan, and Clemson round out the top five, followed by No.6 Oklahoma. The Sooners surprisingly went into halftime up only 7-3 against Kent State before cruising in the second half to a 33-3 win.

Oklahoma takes the No.6 spot from Texas A&M, who dropped 18 spots to No.24 this week after a stunning 17-14 home upset loss to Appalachian State of the Sun Belt Conference. USC follows at No.7, with Oklahoma State, Kentucky, and Arkansas rounding out the top ten.

Texas A&M 14, Appalachian State 17 

The Texas A&M offense struggled mightily, with quarterback Haynes King and the Aggies averaging 4.9 yards per pass attempt.

The week prior, North Carolina scorched the same Appalachian State defense to the tune of 9.8 yards per pass attempt and 63 points.

Appalachian State outgained A&M 305-186 and had 22 first downs to just nine by the Aggies. They dominated time of possession, too, holding the ball for 41:29 of the game, compared to A&M’s 18:31.

It is only Appalachian State’s second-ever win over an AP Top 25 team. The first came when they famously knocked off No.5 Michigan 34-32 with a last-second blocked field goal in Ann Arbor in 2007.

The loss is a significant setback for the Aggies and their head coach Jimbo Fisher, who now has a 35-15 record in his fifth season at A&M. The Aggies, who were the preseason No.6 team, faced championship expectations after bringing in the highest-rated recruiting class in the modern era.

Texas A&M will have to recoup quickly as they welcome No.13 Miami to College Station this Saturday.

The Aggies can take solace because they were not the only top ten team to lose to an unranked Sun Belt team. Notre Dame dropped from No.8 to outside the Top 25 after a 26-21 loss to Marshall, giving them a 0-2 record.

It is only the fifth time in the past 10 seasons and the first time since 2020 that two top-10 teams lost at home to unranked teams in the same week.

Also falling in the rankings are No.17 Baylor, No.18 Florida, and No.23 Pittsburgh, who all lost to fellow ranked teams. Texas, No.25 Oregon, and No.22 Penn State are the only new teams in this week’s AP Top 25.

 Baylor 20, BYU 26 F/2OT

In a matchup of future Big 12 conference rivals, Baylor came up short in double-overtime on the road against now-No.12 BYU. The Bears were flagged for 14 penalties, losing 117 yards. The infractions derailed some critical Baylor drives and kept some BYU drives alive.

Two false starts on Baylor’s last possession after they had made it to the BYU 4-yard line cost the team dearly as an incompletion by Baylor quarterback Blake Shapen on the ensuing fourth down in double overtime sealed the upset win for BYU.

The BYU defense was tough, allowing only 3.6 yards per play, sacking Shapen four times for a loss of 22 yards, and recording six tackles for loss.

Jaren Hall threw for 261 yards and a touchdown and added a 22-yard touchdown catch to lead BYU’s offense. BYU plays another Top 25 team next when they travel to face No.25 Oregon.

Full AP Top 25 (First-Place Votes):

  1. Georgia (53), 2-0 Last week: 2
  2. Alabama (9), 2-0 Last week: 1
  3. Ohio State (1), 2-0 Last week: 3
  4. Michigan, 2-0 Last week: 4
  5. Clemson, 2-0 Last week: 5
  6. Oklahoma, 2-0 Last week: 7
  7. USC, 2-0 Last week: 10
  8. Oklahoma State, 2-0 Last week: 11
  9. Kentucky, 2-0 Last week: 20
  10. Arkansas, 2-0 Last week: 16
  11. Michigan State, 2-0 Last week: 14
  12. BYU, 2-0 Last week: 21
  13. Miami (FL), 2-0 Last week: 15
  14. Utah, 1-1 Last week: 13
  15. Tennessee, 2-0 Last week: 24
  16. NC State, 2-0 Last week: 18
  17. Baylor, 1-2 Last week: 9
  18. Florida, 1-1 Last week: 12
  19. Wake Forest, 2-0 Last week: 23
  20. Ole Miss, 2-0 Last week: 22
  21. Texas, 1-1 Last week: NR
  22. Penn State, 2-0 Last week: NR
  23. Pittsburgh, 1-1 Last week: 17
  24. Texas A&M, 1-1 Last week: 6
  25. Oregon, 1-1 Last week: NR

Others receiving votes: Marshall 85, Cincinnati 80, Appalachian State 80, Kansas State 77, North Carolina 71, Mississippi State 43, Florida State 42, Oregon State 42, Minnesota 37, Washington State 30, Notre Dame 23, Air Force 19, Texas Tech 17, Wisconsin 7, Auburn 4, Iowa State 4, Purdue 1.

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