Near upsets were plentiful on a wild college football Saturday. The key word is near, however, as there weren’t any changes at the top of the USA TODAY Sports AFCA Coaches Poll.
The top five teams remain the same, led by No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Georgia. The Crimson Tide still have all but one of the 65 first-place votes despite needing to stave off a furious rally at Florida. The Bulldogs, again claiming the last No. 1 vote, had a much easier time with South Carolina in their SEC opener and easily retain the second spot.
Oklahoma holds at No. 3, though the Sooners finish just two poll points ahead of Oregon this week after a closer-than-expected result in their reunion with former Big Eight rival Nebraska. Texas A&M again rounds out a top five.
Iowa nudged ahead of Clemson for the No. 6 spot, as the Tigers struggled to put away Georgia Tech. Penn State, a prime-time winner at home against Auburn, jumps four places to No. 8. Cincinnati and Notre Dame, who will meet in person on Oct. 2, round out the top 10 as Florida slips to No. 11 ahead of Ohio State.
HIGHS AND LOWS: College football winners, losers from Week 3
MISERY INDEX: Top spot goes to Florida State after falling to 0-3
OBSERVATIONS: Oklahoma’s offense sputters, state of Michigan rises
Fresno State joins the poll at No. 25 thanks to its thrilling win at then-No. 13 UCLA in the wee hours. It’s the first appearance for the Bulldogs since the final poll of the 2018 season. Also moving in is Michigan State. The Spartans improved to 3-0 with a win at Miami (Fla.) and debut in the poll at No. 21.
Virginia Tech and Arizona State are the week’s dropouts.
There is a change to the panel of coaches for the rest of the season. Jonathan Smith of Oregon State is replacing former Southern California coach Clay Helton.