By Andy Staples
September 29, 2009
NCAA Football Power Rankings
21 Missouri Tigers
Last Week: 21
It would be unfair to dock the Tigers for barely beating Nevada. When a favorite goes on the road for a nationally televised game on a Thursday or Friday, any win is a good win.
Last game: Beat Nevada, 31-21
Next game: Oct. 8 vs. Nebraska
22 California Golden Bears
Last Week: 4
So did the Bears lose to Oregon because they were looking ahead to USC? They'd better have been, because if they aren't prepared for the Trojans, they've completely torpedoed their chances for a Pac-10 title.
Last game: Lost to Oregon, 42-3
Next game: Saturday vs. USC
23 Oklahoma State Cowboys
Last Week: 20
The Cowboys needed this week off before they open Big 12 play next week. Receiver Dez Bryant, tailback Kendall Hunter and cornerback Perrish Cox all have missed time because of injuries. With any luck, the Cowboys will be healthy when they start conference play.
Last game: Beat Grambling State, 56-6
Next game: Oct. 10 at Texas A&M
24 Georgia Bulldogs
Last Week: --
Georgia defensive tackle -- and prolific tweeter -- Jeff Owens declared LSU "very beatable" on Twitter on Monday afternoon. We'll see if he's correct. To beat the Tigers, Georgia's offense and defense will have to show up for the same game, and that hasn't happened yet.
Last game: Beat Arizona State, 20-17
Next game: Saturday vs. LSU
25 South Carolina Gamecocks
Last Week: --
Finally, Gamecocks linebacker Eric Norwood is getting his due as one of the nation's best defenders. This South Carolina team seems more athletic than any coach Steve Spurrier has had in Columbia, but it'll need to be deep enough to handle the inevitable injuries that will pile up as the season gets longer.
Last game: Beat Ole Miss, 16-10
Next game: Saturday vs. South Carolina State

Next five: Notre Dame, Kansas, Auburn, Wisconsin, Ole Miss

Andy Staples' Power Rankings also serve as his ballot in the Associated Press Top 25 poll.

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