Giglio: New No. 1 is last year's No. 1: Alabama

jgiglio@newsobserver.comSeptember 5, 2012 

(Editor’s note: Joe Giglio is one of 60 AP voters.)

It’s natural to have doubts about a team like Alabama after it loses so much talent to the NFL. After its 41-14 whipping of Michigan, there are fewer about the Crimson Tide, who picked up my No. 1 vote, and 27 others, to take over the top spot in the AP Top 25.

The main question on offense for Alabama was at running back, where it had to replace running back Trent Richardson, a Heisman finalist and top 5 draft pick. No problem, freshman T.J. Yeldon ran 11 times for 111 yards.

I moved my preseason No. 1, LSU, down one spot. Luckily, we are guaranteed at least one meeting between Alabama and LSU (on Nov. 3 in Baton Rouge, La.).

The biggest move up was by Michigan State (No. 8 up from No. 14), which beat Boise State, 17-13 at home on Friday, and I wasn’t impressed with South Carolina’s (9) effort at Vanderbilt, so I dropped them three spots.

Two newcomers this week, Tennessee (20) and Texas (25), to replace a pair of teams that won, Florida and Washington, but struggled in the process.

Just like the preseason, I have four ACC teams in the top 25: Clemson (7), Florida State (10), Virginia Tech (15) and Georgia Tech (23). The Yellow Jackets lost on the road, in overtime, to a top 25 team. There’s no reason to drop them out of the poll.

(Last week's ranking in parentheses)

1. Alabama (3)
2. LSU (1)
3. USC (2)
4. Oregon (5)
5. Oklahoma (4)
6. West Virginia (8)
7. Clemson (9)
8. Michigan State (14)
9. South Carolina (6)
10. Florida State (10)
11. Arkansas (11)
12. Georgia (13)
13. Oklahoma State (15)
14. Ohio State (18)
15. Virginia Tech (16)
16. Wisconsin (12)
17. Kansas State (17)
18. Michigan (7)
19. Nebraska (20)
20. Tennessee (NR)
21. TCU (21)
22. Boise State (19 )
23. Georgia Tech (23)
24. Missouri (24)
25. Texas (NR)

Out: Florida (22), Washington (25)

Giglio: 919-829-8938 or

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