University of Missouri

Alex Schiffer’s AP Ballot: LSU to No. 2, Washington falls, hello to Maryland and USC

DeMarkus Acy on MU’s win over West Virginia

Missouri cornerback DeMarkus Acy talks about the Tigers performance against Westminister Virginia.
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Missouri cornerback DeMarkus Acy talks about the Tigers performance against Westminister Virginia.

There was some major shakeup in this week’s AP Top 25 poll in light of LSU’s impressive win over Texas and Texas A&M’s loss to Clemson.

My own ballot reflected a lot of what we learned over the weekend.

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LSU, Iowa and Washington State. Let’s start with Iowa. Beating Rutgers only means so much these days, but the Hawkeyes have a stellar defense, led by A.J. Espenesa, who should hear his name called early in April’s NFL Draft. As for Wazzu, Mike Leach just continues to reload up in Pullman. What other coach has won in the places he has at his level?

As for LSU, I’m all in on the Tigers. I moved them ahead of Alabama, Georgia and Oklahoma because LSU has faced the toughest team so far, a Texas squad that could challenge the Sooners for the Big 12 title. Alabama and Georgia have played buy games so far, but UGA will have its chance to move back up when the Bulldogs face Notre Dame next weekend. LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is my darkhorse candidate for the Heisman right now and I think the Tigers are extremely impressive on both sides of the ball.

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Texas, Texas A&M and Washington. The Longhorns made it a game against LSU but couldn’t get a stop in the second half. Oklahoma-Texas on Oct. 12 might decide either team’s playoff fate. The Aggies have the toughest schedule in the country and still have to play Alabama, Georgia and LSU after a 24-10 loss at Clemson. Texas A&M remains the hardest team to rank.

Washington had a weird game Saturday after the game was delayed when its stadium lost power. California is coming off a 7-6 season and the Huskies had enough talent to win that game. With USC, Utah and Oregon all 2-0, maybe the Pac-12 is in for a better season?

Say hello to ...

Iowa State, Maryland and USC. Small sample size with the Cyclones (1-0), but next week against Iowa will determine what kind of team ISU is. The Terps have scored 142 points through their first two games and upset Syracuse by 43 points. I can see Maryland winning eight games this year if things break right.

As for the Trojans, can Clay Helton save his job at USC? So far the Trojans have survived a tough start and an ACL injury to star quarterback J.T. Daniels. They’ll go as far as backup Kedon Slovis can take them.

Say goodbye to ...

Syracuse, Cincinnati, Stanford. The Orange and Cardinal both got upset in dramatic fashion and the Bearcats were shut out by Ohio State 42-0 after many analysts expected the game to be competitive in the second half. Can Cincy really challenge UCF in the American?

My AP Top 25 ballot:

  1. Clemson

  2. LSU

  3. Alabama

  4. Oklahoma

  5. Georgia

  6. Ohio State

  7. Notre Dame

  8. Auburn

  9. Michigan

  10. Texas

  11. Florida

  12. Penn State

  13. Utah

  14. Texas A&M

  15. Oregon

  16. Wisconsin

  17. UCF

  18. Michigan State

  19. Iowa

  20. Washington State

  21. Washington

  22. Boise State

  23. Iowa State

  24. Maryland

  25. USC

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Alex Schiffer has been covering the Missouri Tigers for The Star since October 2017. He came in second place for magazine-length feature writing by the U.S. Basketball Writer’s Association in 2018 and graduated from Mizzou in 2017.