USC falls out of AP poll for first time under Lincoln Riley

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Sunday, November 5, 2023

USCdropped out of The Associated Press college football poll Sunday for the first time under coach Lincoln Riley, and No. 15 Oklahoma State vaulted into the rankings for the first time this year.

The top nine teams in the Top 25 held their spots, led by No. 1 Georgia. The Bulldogs have now tied the second-longest streak atop the poll at 21 straight weeks, dating back to the middle of last season.

Georgia received 49 first-place votes. No. 2 Michigan got nine first-place votes, No. 3 Ohio State had three, and No. 4 Florida State had two.

Washington remained No. 5, followed by Oregon, Texas, Alabama and Penn State.

The last time the first nine teams in the poll went unchanged this late in the season was Nov. 19, 2017.

Ole Missmoved up a spot to a season-high No. 10.

USC (7-3) lost to Washington on Saturday night in yet another high-scoring, defense-optional affair and is now unranked after starting the season No. 6. The Trojans fired defensive coordinator Alex Grinch on Sundayafter surrendering 49 points or more in back-to-back games.

Next week at Oregon, USC will play as an unranked team for the first time since 2021, a 4-8 season in which the school fired coach Clay Helton after two games.

USC hired Riley away from Oklahoma after the 2021 season, and he brought Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams with him as a transfer. The Trojans started this season 6-0 but have lost three of four since, allowing 46 points per game.

Oklahoma State (7-2) is having an inverse season to USC.

The Cowboys beat rival Oklahoma for their fifth straight victory after a 2-2 start. The Cowboys' jump to No. 15 matches the highest ranking for a previously unranked team this deep into the season since the AP poll expanded to 25 teams in 1989.

USC went from unranked to No. 15 on Nov. 13, 2016, after it beat No. 4 Washington 26-13 in Seattle.


Georgia's No. 1 streak matches Miami's 21 straight from 2001 to 2002. The Bulldogs still have a long way to go to catch USC's 33 straight from 2003 to 2005.

What did both the Miami and USC streaks have in common? They both ended with a national championship game loss.


Four teams moved into the rankings this week, matching a season high.

Like Oklahoma State, No. 23 Arizona and No. 25 Liberty made their season debuts in the rankings.

Arizona beat UCLA on Saturday night and is ranked for the first time since a one-week stay at No. 23 in early November 2017. For the first time in school history, the Wildcats have beaten three straight opponents who were ranked at the time of the game.

"It was as good of a game as I've been a part of this year," third-year coach Jedd Fisch said after the UCLA game. "I've said that now a few weeks in a row, and I think that's what makes us cool. You know that we can keep saying we're getting better."

Unbeaten Liberty is ranked for a second straight season. The Flames spent two weeks in the Top 25 around the same time last year.

No. 24 North Carolinaalso moved back into the rankings.

Dropping out along with USC were:

Air Force, which was upset by Army to fall from the ranks of the unbeaten.

UCLA, after taking its third loss of the season.

Kansas State, which lost in overtime to Texas to fall to 6-3.


SEC: 6 (Nos. 1, 8, 10, 14, 16, 17)

Pac-12: 5 (Nos. 5, 6, 12, 13, 23)

Big 12: 4 (Nos. 7, 15, 18, 19)

Big Ten: 3 (Nos. 2, 3, 9)

ACC: 3 (Nos. 4, 11, 24)

American: 1 (No. 20)

Conference USA: 1 (No. 25)

Sun Belt: 1 (No. 21)

Independent: 1 (No. 22)


No. 10 Ole Miss at No. 1 Georgia. The fifth time the Rebels and Bulldogs have met as ranked teams and first time since 2016.

No. 2 Michigan at No. 9 Penn State. Third straight ranked matchup in the series and sixth in the past seven years.

No. 13 Utah at No. 5 Washington. Third time the Utes and Huskies will play when both are ranked.

No. 14 Tennessee at No. 16 Missouri. First time in 12 meetings that both are ranked.

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