Michigan moves into the top three of Power Rankings after Week 9

Michigan's victory over Michigan State boosts the Wolverines up to No. 3 in SI's Power Rankings after Week 9 while Ohio State drops to No. 7 after its sloppy win over Northwestern.
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Week 9 trimmed the number of undefeated teams from nine to five. Nebraska, West Virginia, Baylor and Boise State all went down, paving the way for a considerable amount of movement in the upper half of this week’s Power Rankings.

Key takeaways from the weekend include the elimination of the Big 12’s candidacy for the College Football Playoff (though the conference itself looks up for grabs) and the solidification of Clemson’s and Washington’s paths to the playoff, as well as Western Michigan’s path to the Group of Five’s New Year’s Six bowl spot.

In total, seven teams from last week’s rankings lost in Week 9. All but Tennessee remained in the top 25, as the Volunteers’ loss to South Carolina, one of the SEC’s two worst offenses, dropped them to 5–3 on the season.

Week 10 gets going early with the No. 16 Broncos bringing us some early-week #MACtion on Tuesday night. Alabama-LSU and Nebraska-Ohio State headline Saturday’s matchups, with other intriguing contests including Wisconsin-Northwestern, Florida-Arkansas and Washington-Cal

STAPLES: Clemson can win a title, but it needs to start dominating

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1. Alabama Crimson Tide

PREVIOUS: 1

RECORD: 8-0

Last week: OffNext week: Saturday at LSU

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2. Clemson Tigers

PREVIOUS: 2

RECORD: 8-0

Last week: Beat Florida State 37-34Next week: Saturday vs. Syracuse

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3. Michigan Wolverines

PREVIOUS: 4

RECORD: 8-0

Last week: Beat Michigan State 32-23Next week: Saturday vs. Maryland

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4. Washington Huskies

PREVIOUS: 3

RECORD: 8-0

Last week: Beat Utah 31-24Next week: Saturday at Cal

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5. Louisville Cardinals

PREVIOUS: 5

RECORD: 7-1

Last week: Beat Virginia 32-25Next week: Saturday at Boston College

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6. Texas A&M Aggies

PREVIOUS: 9

RECORD: 7-1

Last week: Beat New Mexico State 52-10Next week: Saturday at Mississippi State

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7. Ohio State Buckeyes

PREVIOUS: 6

RECORD: 7-1

Last week: Beat Northwestern 24-20Next week: Saturday vs. Nebraska

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8. Wisconsin Badgers

PREVIOUS: 10

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Nebraska 23-17Next week: Saturday at Northwestern

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9. Auburn Tigers

PREVIOUS: 14

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Ole Miss 40-29Next week: Saturday vs. Vanderbilt

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10. Nebraska Cornhuskers

PREVIOUS: 7

RECORD: 7-1

Last week: Lost to Wisconsin 23-17 in overtimeNext week: Saturday at Ohio State

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11. Florida Gators

PREVIOUS: 16

RECORD: 6-1

Last week: Beat Georgia 24-10Next week: Saturday at Arkansas

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12. Oklahoma Sooners

PREVIOUS: 15

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Kansas 56-3Next week: Thursday at Iowa State

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13. LSU Tigers

PREVIOUS: 19

RECORD: 5-2

Last week: Beat Ole Miss 38-21Next week: Saturday vs. Alabama

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14. Utah Utes

PREVIOUS: 17

RECORD: 7-2

Last week: Lost to Washington 31-24Next week: Off

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15. West Virginia Mountaineers

PREVIOUS: 8

RECORD: 6-1

Last week: Lost to Oklahoma State 37-20Next week: Saturday vs. Kansas

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16. Western Michigan Broncos

PREVIOUS: 20

RECORD: 8-0

Last week: OffNext week: Tuesday at Ball State

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17. Baylor Bears

PREVIOUS: 11

RECORD: 6-1

Baylor set forth its weakest defensive effort of the season against Texas, allowing 7.61 yards per play, and now the Big 12 is without a playoff candidate. Like West Virginia, the Bears’ soft schedule is about to finally heat up over the final month-plus of the season. Last week: Lost to Texas 35-34Next week: Saturday vs. TCU ​

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18. North Carolina Tar Heels

PREVIOUS: 22

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: OffNext week: Saturday vs. Georgia Tech

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19. Florida State Seminoles

PREVIOUS: 12

RECORD: 5-3

Last week: Lost to Clemson 37-34Next week: Saturday at NC State

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20. Boise State Broncos

PREVIOUS: 13

RECORD: 7-1

Last week: Lost to Wyoming 30-28Next week: Friday vs. San Jose State

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21. Penn State Nittany Lions

PREVIOUS: 24

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Purdue 62-24Next week: Saturday vs. Iowa

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22. Colorado Buffaloes

PREVIOUS: 21

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: OffNext week: Thursday vs. UCLA

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23. Oklahoma State Cowboys

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat West Virginia 37-20Next week: Saturday at Kansas State

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24. Virginia Tech Hokies

PREVIOUS: 25

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Pittsburgh 39-36Next week: Saturday at Duke

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25. Washington State Cougars

PREVIOUS: 23

RECORD: 6-2

Last week: Beat Oregon State 35-31Next week: Saturday vs. Arizona

Dropped out: Tennessee
Next five: Houston, South Florida, USC, San Diego State, Troy