Lauren Shute: How I voted in the AP Top 25 following Week 5

Things are starting to get fun as we move closer to the midpoint of the 2017 college football season.

The picture of who is truly a Top 25 team is becoming clearer. So we’ll start with who deserves the top spot.

I thought Alabama put together a better win than Clemson did against Boston College last weekend. The Crimson Tide made a statement with their blowout win even though it was at Vanderbilt. The most beautiful part about the AP Top 25 poll — or the worst part depending on what team you cheer for — is that it’s a weekly poll. That means there’s an opportunity for movement every Sunday.

Clemson has played a tougher schedule and has faced better competition than Alabama to this point, having faced and beaten three teams in the top 15. That’s not up for debate. Dabo Swinney’s team didn’t look as good against Boston College in Week 4, but it rebounded in its second road game Saturday at Virginia Tech, 31-17. That’s why, once again, I have Clemson ranked No. 1. Debates can rage all day long about who’s most deserving of sitting at the top, but the reality is that cases can be made for both teams. Everything else inside the top 10 is self explanatory.

As for Auburn, I think the Tigers are gaining traction and proving what they showed flashes of in Week 2: Auburn easily could be a top-10 team. Kevin Steele’s defense lost four players to the NFL draft, and somehow this unit is even better (and more fun to watch).

Offensively, if the Tigers continue to improve each week, which they’ll have the chance to do in the coming month, their home game against Georgia on Nov. 11 should be a meeting of top-10 teams.

There are big games coming up, and again, that likely will mean some changes in the poll in the next month. There’s now enough evidence and statistics to validate inklings I’ve had since the opening week of the season. We’ll see what happens.

Here’s the complete picture of how I voted following Week 5.

  1. Clemson
  2. Alabama
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Penn State
  5. Washington
  6. Georgia
  7. Michigan
  8. TCU
  9. Wisconsin
  10. Virginia Tech
  11. Auburn
  12. Ohio State
  13. Miami
  14. Washington St.
  15. Oklahoma St.
  16. Louisville
  17. South Florida
  18. San Diego State
  19. Utah
  20. Notre Dame
  21. West Virginia
  22. UCF
  23. Oregon
  24. Florida State
  25. USC

The post Lauren Shute: How I voted in the AP Top 25 following Week 5 appeared first on SEC Country.

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