October 10, 2005

Penn State bursts into AP top 10

Penn State is in the top 10, Michigan is out again and UCLA is on the rise in The Associated Press Top 25.

The eighth-ranked Nittany Lions (6-0) are off to their best start in six years and have their highest ranking since they were No. 6 in the Nov. 7, 1999 poll.

Southern California is No. 1 for the 25th straight poll, receiving 58 first-place votes in the media rankings released Sunday, with Texas and Virginia Tech holding onto the next two spots. The Longhorns received seven first-place votes, one more than last week.

Florida State is fourth followed by a pair of Southeastern Conference teams, Georgia and Alabama.

Miami is No. 7 and Penn State, Notre Dame and LSU round out the top 10.

Penn State, which started the season unranked, beat Ohio State 17-10 on Saturday night in State College, Pa., to jump eight spots in the AP poll. Ohio State fell nine spots to 15th.

Michigan had a streak of 114 straight weeks in the rankings snapped when the Wolverines fell out of the rankings two weeks ago, following their second loss of the season. Michigan jumped back into the Top 25 after beating Michigan State last week, but the Wolverines fell to 3-3 with a last-second loss to Minnesota and were dropped from the rankings again.

Penn State, the only Big Ten team without a conference loss, plays at Michigan on Saturday.

"We're not done," Nittany Lions quarterback Michael Robinson said after the Ohio State win. "We've got ourselves a tough Michigan game coming up next weekend."

In the USA Today coaches' poll, the top five was unchanged from last week -- USC, Texas, Virginia Tech, Georgia and Florida State.

In the AP Top 25, No. 11 is Florida and UCLA is No. 12, moving up eight spots after beating California 47-40.

The Bruins (5-0) haven't been ranked this high since the last poll of October 2001 when they were ninth.

No. 13 Texas Tech is followed by Boston College, Ohio State, Michigan State and Tennessee, which fell nine spots to No. 17 after losing 27-14 to Georgia at home.

Cal dropped eight spots to No. 18, and is followed by Louisville and Oregon. No. 21 Auburn gives the SEC six ranked teams, the most of any league.

The bottom four has two teams (Minnesota and TCU) moving back into the rankings this season and another (Colorado) making its 2005 debut in the Top 25.

Minnesota returns at No. 22, and No. 23 Wisconsin gives the Big Ten five ranked teams.

No. 24 Colorado is in the rankings for the first time since early in the 2003 season.

No. 25 TCU was in the Top 25 for one week after beating Oklahoma to start this season, then lost to SMU the next week and fell out. The Horned Frogs have since won four straight.

Falling out of the Top 25 along with Michigan were Georgia Tech and Arizona State.

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