College football fans should get ready for the first big shakeup in the polls this week. This week’s action saw eight ranked teams lose, including five who lost to unranked teams. Let’s take a closer look at this week’s biggest losers.
No. 7 Notre Dame
The Fighting Irish can take some solace in knowing that they beat the spread and had a chance to win the game on their final possession. That could give Notre Dame a chance to play itself back into the College Football Playoff conversation if it can win the rest of its games because no one can call losing at Georgia a bad loss.
The problem is that Notre Dame’s remaining schedule isn’t all that strong, so a one-loss Notre Dame team wouldn’t exactly have a strong case with the CFP committee.
No. 10 Utah
The Utes were Pac-12 South favorites to start the season, but that’s out the door after Friday’s loss to USC. The Trojans suffered another injury at the quarterback position early in the game, but third-stringer Matt Fink stepped in and led USC to a win.
Utah is still a Top-25 team, but USC is now 2-0 in conference play and clearly the team in the driver’s seat as Clay Helton tries to get the program back on track.
No. 11 Michigan
Jim Harbaugh probably had the worst day of anyone in college football on Saturday. The Wolverines were humiliated by Wisconsin, falling behind 35-0 at one point. It was another big-game disappointment for the Wolverines, who may not be able to recover given their difficult schedule. Plus, it’s possible Michigan isn’t that good.
No. 15 UCF
The Knights hadn’t lost a non-bowl game since 2016, but that streak is over. To its credit, UCF fought back after digging itself an early hole. But Pittsburgh had a response for UCF’s comeback in the form of a trick play on fourth down that gave the Panthers the game-winning touchdown.
No. 17 Texas A&M
Nobody’s going to blame the Aggies too much for losing to Auburn, even at home. However, Jimbo Fisher’s team already has two losses on the season, albeit to Clemson and Auburn. With a few more top-10 teams on its schedule, it doesn’t get much easier for Texas A&M moving forward.
No. 19 Washington State
Apparently, the Washington State defense isn’t that good. The Cougars’ Anthony Gordon threw nine touchdown passes but did so in a losing effort. Chip Kelly’s UCLA team, which scored exactly 14 points in each of its first three games, put 67 points on the scoreboard — including 48 in the second half — to knock off the Cougars.
No. 24 Arizona State
Hopefully, Herm Edwards and the Sun Devils enjoyed their brief time in the Top 25 after last week’s win over Michigan State. Arizona State just didn’t play to win the game on Saturday, losing at home to Colorado.
No. 25 TCU
In fairness, TCU reached the Top 25 after a win over a Purdue team that also lost to Nevada, so we weren’t sure how good the Horned Frogs are this season. Apparently, not good enough to beat SMU at home. To be fair, the Mustangs are 4-0, even if they haven’t beaten anyone particularly good outside of TCU.