New York, NY – The Southeastern Conference has long been considered the most dominant league in college football and the most recent Associated Press poll proves it.
LSU, Alabama and Arkansas now occupy the top three spots in the rankings, giving one conference a three-team sweep at the top of the AP poll for the first time since 1971 when Nebraska, Oklahoma and Colorado from the old Big 8 accomplished the feat.
LSU is No. 1 for the ninth straight week and is again a unanimous choice with all 60 first-place votes. Alabama slid up one spot to second and Arkansas moved up three places to third.
Stanford, Oklahoma State, Virginia Tech, Boise State, Houston, Oregon and Southern California round out the top 10. Oklahoma State dropped three spots from second after a stunning loss to Iowa State on Friday, while Oregon tumbled five spots following a home setback to Southern California, which vaulted eight spots from 18th.
The second 10 consists of Michigan State, Oklahoma, Georgia, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Kansas State, Michigan, Clemson, TCU and Penn State. Oklahoma dropped seven places from fifth on the heels of a last-minute loss at Baylor, while Clemson had the biggest fall in the poll. The Tigers, who had already locked up a spot in the ACC championship game, suffered a 37-13 loss at NC State on Saturday and plummeted 11 spots from seventh.
Baylor, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Virginia and Georgia Tech are the last five teams ranked this week. Virginia is ranked for the first time this season after pulling off a 14-13 win at Florida State on Saturday. The Cavaliers can win the ACC's Coastal Division with a victory at home over Virginia Tech next Saturday. Georgia Tech is back in the poll after dropping out the week before following a loss to Virginia Tech. The Yellow Jackets beat Duke on Saturday.
Florida State and Southern Miss each dropped out this week. Southern Miss was 22nd before its loss to UAB.
The Thanksgiving weekend brings plenty of ranked matchups. In addition to Friday's titanic tilt in the SEC and Saturday's ACC Coastal bout in Charlottesville, the Big Ten's Leaders Division title will be up for grabs on Saturday when Penn State visits Wisconsin.
Interconference rivalries also take center stage on Saturday, as Georgia visits Georgia Tech and South Carolina hosts Clemson. One more ranked matchup pits Notre Dame at Stanford.