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CBS Sports 128 rankings: Ohio State impresses, jumps to No. 2 behind Alabama

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 Chip Patterson mugshot

CBS Sports Writer

What was hyped as the greatest opening weekend in college football history absolutely delivered. There were upsets and thrill. Most importantly, there’s now a notebook full of fascinating storylines to set the stage for the 2016 season. Over the next three months, we’ll find out whether LSU can get it together, whether Texas is for real and whether anyone (anyone?!) can beat the monster known as the Alabama Crimson Tide.

The best thing about the CBS Sports 128 is that it doesn’t view college football in a 25-team prism, so the movements are more fluid. Texas A&M, Texas and Wisconsin didn’t have a little number by their name but new appearances in the polls make their arrival a surprise and change expectations for the season. It was no surprise to the 128, though, since we had all three as top-40 teams in the preseason rankings.

College football experts from CBS Sports — and for the first time this year, partner 247Sports — contribute ballots each week, which are averaged together for our rankings. You can see the top-25 below, and 26-128 on our rankings page.

RANK TEAM RECORD PREVIOUS
1 Alabama 1-0 1
2 Ohio State 1-0 5
3 Clemson 1-0 2
4 Florida State 1-0 4
5 Michigan 1-0 9
6 Houston 1-0 14
7 Stanford 1-0 7
8 Louisville 1-0 20
9 Notre Dame 0-1 8
10 Ole Miss 0-1 11
11 Oklahoma 0-1 3
12 Georgia 1-0 19
13 Texas 1-0 27
14 Wisconsin 1-0 32
15 Texas A&M 1-0 35
16 Washington 1-0 18
17 Iowa 1-0 21
18 LSU 0-1 6
19 Michigan State 1-0 17
20 TCU 1-0 13
21 Baylor 1-0 16
22 Boise State 1-0 28
23 Tennessee 1-0 12
24 UCLA 0-1 10
25 Oklahoma State 1-0 22

This week’s rankings also showcase some of the post-Week 1 adjustments by our voters within the top 25. TCU, for example, ranked No. 13 in the preseason but dropped to No. 20 after a tough fight with FCS South Dakota State. Notre Dame and Ole Miss landed in the top 10 after losses thanks to impressive performances that may have exceeded our group’s expectations. But again, we still have a very small sample size. There’s plenty of weeks left to question and adjust our views on these teams within the CBS 128.

It’s a short turnaround, but now we rally to prepare for Week 2 and a doubling of the sample size for judging these teams. Let’s get to the movement report.


Biggest movers

  • Texas A&M (+20): Of all the teams that moved into the top-25 of the 128 after the first week of play, no one was ranked lower than the Aggies in the preseason. All it took was an overtime win against UCLA to fire up the hype train here among our voters.
  • Wisconsin (+18): Wisconsin’s stingy defense was a wake-up call after many experts had downgraded that unit following the departure of Dave Aranda. It looks like Paul Chryst has more carryover from 2015 than we expected.
  • Texas (+14): Texas’ surge is the story of Week 1, thrusting a crowd-surfing Charlie Strong into the spotlight. If the Longhorns’ offense continues to cook with two quarterbacks, the climb could continue.
  • Louisville (+12): The Lamar Jackson effect. I don’t think many watched every moment of Louisville’s first half against Charlotte, but everyone looked at that box score in shock. That’s what eight touchdowns will do.
  • LSU (-12): The only big mover in the other direction, LSU’s fall was expected. The fact that the Tigers are still in the top 20 suggests our voters still believe in Les.

Check out the rest of the CBS Sports 128: Teams ranked 26-128