Ad Spot

January 27, 2021

College football: LSU drops out of poll, UNC rises to 5th

By Ralph D. Russo

AP College Football Writer

LSU is out of The Associated Press college football poll for the first time since 2017 and is the first defending national champion to drop from the rankings in nine years.

No. 1 Clemson, No. 2 Alabama and No. 3 Georgia held steady at the top of the rankings Sunday, setting up a top-three matchup Saturday when the Crimson Tide hosts the Bulldogs.

Clemson received 59 first-place votes. Alabama got two and Georgia one. Notre Dame moved up to No. 4 and North Carolina is No. 5.

LSU dropped out from No. 17 after falling to 1-2 with a 45-41 loss at previously winless Missouri. The Tigers had been ranked in 43 straight polls, dating to Nov. 5, 2017. That was the seventh-longest active streak in the nation.

The last defending national champion to be unranked was Auburn in 2011. Following Cam Newton’s departure the Tigers spent much of the ’11 season outside the Top 25, finishing 8-5 and unranked.

This is the second straight week that one of college football’s traditional powers has fallen from the rankings, with LSU following Oklahoma.
The Sooners remained unranked Sunday, even after beating Texas in four overtimes. The Longhorns dropped out of the Top 25 for the first time this season with their second straight loss, but that’s hardly big news at this point.

Texas has not had a season in which it was ranked from beginning to end since 2009.

The last time both Oklahoma and LSU were unranked was also the last time before this season the Sooners were out of the polls: Sept. 25, 2016. That was a one-week departure for OU, which went on to win the Big 12 after starting 1-2.

The last time Oklahoma went two straight Top 25s without being ranked was the final two polls of the 2014 season, when the Sooners finished 8-5 and lost their final two games.

—No. 22 Kansas State is ranked for the first time this season. The Wildcats made a few brief appearances in the Top 25 last year.
—No. 25 Southern California is the latest of the teams still waiting to start their seasons to re-enter the Top 25. The Trojans were ranked in the preseason and then became ineligible when the season started and the Pac-12 was looking at trying to play in the winter/spring. When the conference decided to return in November, following the Big Ten, its teams became eligible to be ranked again.

No. 11 Texas A&M jumped 10 spots after beating No. 10 Florida in a thriller at College Station. The Gators slipped six spots.
No. 13 Miami dropped six spots after losing for the first time this season. The Hurricanes received a serious dose of reality, losing 42-17 at Clemson.

A week after having four top-10 teams for the first time, the Atlantic Coast Conference reached another milestone with three top-five teams. North Carolina has its best ranking since early November 1997, the height of coach Mack Brown’s first stint in Chapel Hill.

Related: The Big Ten is two weeks away from playing and there are still 10 voters who are waiting for No. 6 Ohio State and other still ramping up teams to start playing before ranking them.

SEC—6 (Nos. 2, 3, 10, 11, 15, 18)
ACC—5 (Nos. 1, 4, 5, 13, 23)
Big Ten—5 (Nos. 6, 9, 16, 19, 24).
Big 12—3 (Nos. 7, 20, 22).
American—2 (Nos. 8, 17).
Pac-12—2 (Nos. 12, 15).
Sun Belt—1 (No. 21).
Independent—1 (No. 14).

The only game matching ranked teams this week is the most anticipated regular-season game of the year.
No. 3 Georgia at No. 2 Alabama. First regular-season meeting since 2015 and first time in Tuscaloosa since 2007.



Salisbury man charged in string of gas station robberies


Blotter: Search warrant produces charges for Salisbury woman


Overton Elementary kicks off kindness challenge with parade

High School

High school soccer: South wins opener against Carson


Rowan Helping Ministries to calculate homeless population


NC Sen. Jeff Jackson enters US Senate race


NC jobless aid office addressing millions of dollars in overpayments


Most in GOP against holding Trump impeachment trial


Health and Human Services secretary: State will balance limited vaccine supply across counties


Love appointed captain of Presidents Cup team for 2022


Department store chain Belk filing for bankruptcy


Tornado leaves path of destruction in Alabama, killing one teenager


At session start, NC legislators pitch consensus with Cooper


School board receives flood of comments on operations after Knox teacher’s death


With two reported Tuesday, county averaging more than two COVID-19 deaths per day


Randolph County deputies cleared in shooting death of Rockwell man


Blotter: Man faces drug charges after being reported as ‘suspicious’


Duke Energy, NC officials announce coal ash expense deal


Police, firefighters parade for hospital staff


Demand continues to exceed supply as county shifts to vaccine appointments


‘Uncommonly good man:’ Local appraiser Scott Robinson dies after fall at home


Rowan Planning Board settles on screening requirements for solar farms


Transition to mass vaccination sites irks NC health systems


Mississippi sheriff: One dead after Salisbury children left in woods; father sought