College Football Conference Power Rankings: Week 4 (9/19-9/21)

Week 4 provided fans around the country with everything from nail-bitters to complete blowouts. Three top-25 match-ups took place within the week and five top-25 teams were upset by non-ranked opponents. Here is your College Football Power Rankings by Conference at the end of week 4:

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American Athletic Conference

1.) #22 UCF Knights
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Despite losing to Pittsburgh 35-34 in week 4, UCF has an impressive win, in their own right, against Standford. Going into week 5 the, once undefeated, UCF Knights look to bounce back against division rival UConn (1-2) and having a top-25 freshman QB in the likes of Dillion Gabriel can certainly help in the matter.

2.) Memphis Tigers
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: After a 15-10 week 1 win against Ole Miss, the Memphis Tigers have outscored opponents 132-53. Led by QB Brady White (Conference Leader in QBR) and RB Kenneth Gainwell (Conference Leader in Rushing Yards), the Tigers look to stay undefeated through week 5, for the first time since 2015, as they travel to Louisiana to face-off against the UL Monroe Warhawks (1-2).

3.) SMU Mustangs
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Coming off their biggest regular season win since 2016 (won against, then, #11 Houston), the Mustangs have come out of nowhere beating #25 TCU 41-38. At 4-0, this is SMU’s best start to a season in the 21st century (last 4-0 start was in 1984). Looking ahead for the Mustangs, they go up against two mediocre teams in South Florida (1-2) and Tulsa (2-2). If you’re someone who bets, you should place your money on SMU starting this season at 6-0 by then end of those two games.

4.) Tulane Green Wave
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Riding a “wave” of momentum, and enjoying their best start to a season since 2003, Tulane is coming off a huge win against division rival, and formerly ranked, Houston. The Green Wave have a top-10 rushing game in the country lead by senior RB Darius Bradwell who boasted an 1,100 yard rushing season last year. Tulane’s week 5 opponent looks to derail their train of momentum as they go up against Army, a team who nearly toppled Michigan in week 2.

5.) Cincinnati Bearcats
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: Since being blown-out by a red-hot Ohio State team in week 2, the Bearcats picked up a win against an outmatched Miami-OH team. Led by Sophomore QB Desmond Ridder and Junior Linebacker Michael Pitts, Cincinnati looks to keep a possible future AAC title-game bid as they go up against an equally title hungry team in the Marshall Thundering Herd (2-1).

6.) Temple Owls
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: The Owls may have lost their week 4 game against Buffalo, but Temple does have a top-25 win against, then, #21 Maryland. They also are ranked in the top-10 in passing yards per game at 347.3 YPG. Their defense needs to fix key issues that came to light against Buffalo’s rush game as they allowed the Bull’s running back, Jaret Patterson, to run for 133 yards and 2 touchdowns. Temple’s QB Anthony Russo threw for 258 yards and 3 touchdowns, but also threw 3 interceptions to go along with it. If Temple can fix these key issues, they should have no problem against their week 5 opponent, Georgia Tech.

7.) Navy Midshipmen
Record: 2-1

8.) East Carolina Pirates
Record: 2-2

9.) Tulsa Golden Hurricane
Record: 2-2

10.) South Florida Bulls
Record: 1-2

11.) Houston Cougars
Record: 1-3

12.) UConn Huskies
Record: 1-2

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Atlantic Coast Conference

1.) #1 Clemson Tigers
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: The reigning national champions are looking as dominant as ever outscoring opponents 169-40. They picked up their first, possibly only, top-25 win of the regular season against Texas A&M (2-2) in week 2. Coming off their week 4 win against the Charlotte 49ers (2-2) look to continue to show the college football world that the Tigers are here to stay and that they’re hunting for another national title later this year.

2.) #18 Virginia Cavaliers
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: The Cavaliers start this season 4-0, as appose to their equally as great 3-1 start to last years’ season. Picking up wins against the likes of Pittsburgh (2-2), William & Mary (2-2), Florida State (2-2), and Old Dominion (1-2), Virginia comes up against their toughest adversary so far this year…#10 Notre Dame (2-1). Virginia good further cement it’s spot as one of the top teams in the ACC this season if they can do what Georgia did to the Irish last week…win.

3.) Boston College Eagles
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Boston College won in week4 against Rutgers (1-2) big led by Junior RB AJ Dillon who ran for 150 yards and 2 touchdowns. Boston College also has wins over Virginia Tech (2-1) and Richmond (1-2), but did come up with a lose in week 3 against Kansas (2-2) 48-24. This coming week, the Eagles go up against Wake Forest who have been steam rolling opposing teams thus far this year year.

4.) Pittsburgh Panthers
Record: 2-2
Bottom Line: Huge win for the Panthers in week 4 against #15 UCF. The Panthers QB Kenny Pickett led the charge throwing for 224 yards and 1 touchdown. The game came down to the wire with Pitt going up 35-34 with less than a minute to go in the game. Their defense did their best to stop UCF from charging down the field…and succeeded in doing so. The Panthers go up against the Delaware Blue Hens this coming week, which should be a squash match for Pitt.

5.) Wake Forest Demon Deacons
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: The last time Wake Forest started 4-0, they ended up finishing the season 8-5. But, compared to the 2015 team, this 2019 Wake Forest team looks better on all three sides. They get their first true test this coming week against Boston College (3-1). If they stay as solid as solid as they’ve been so far, they should pick up the win and move to 5-0…but don’t hold your breath.

6.) NC State Wolfpack
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: The Wolfpack are looking to muster up similar success as they did last year going 9-4. This year they’ve started 3-1, with their only lose coming to West Virginia in week 3. Their next opponent is going to be Florida State (2-2) who have been looking to get back to the top of the NCAA since the exit of QB Jamies Winston, but haven’t been able to do so.

7.) Florida State Seminoles
Record: 2-2

8.) Virginia Tech Hokies
Record: 2-1

9.) Duke Blue Devils
Record: 2-1

10.) Miami Hurricanes
Record: 2-2

11.) North Carolina Tar Heels
Record: 2-2

12.) Louisville Cardinals
Record: 2-2

13.) Syracuse Orange
Record: 2-2

14.) Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
Record: 1-2

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Big 12

1.) #6 Oklahoma Sooners
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: Coming into week 5, the Sooners have one of their easier games this season against Texas Tech. (2-1). Oklahoma currently is 2nd in the nation for Rushing yards per game (324.3) and 7th in the nation in Passing yards per game (352.3). Led by former Heisman QB Jalen Hurts, the Sooners are looking to make quick work of the Red Raiders en-route to their battle with Texas (3-1) on October 12th.

2.) #11 Texas Longhorns
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Being a one loss team (lot to LSU in week 2 45-38), Texas can’t afford to lose any games from here on out if they want to make a run for the national championship. That means not losing to Oklahoma, Kansas State, or their conference championship. That being said, the road to the College Football Playoffs starts in two weeks at West Virginia on October 5th. Texas will need to use this bye-week wisely and they need to use it to gather the strength, courage, and integrity to continue to win. One more slip up and they’re out.

3.) #24 Kansas State Wildcats
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: Finally the Wildcats are seeing their winning ways return to their program…something they haven’t seen since 2012 when they went 12-1 while losing to Oregon in the Fiesta Bowl. Kansas State’s toughest test so far this year will come against the Oklahoma State Cowboys (3-1) who are coming off a fresh lose to the Texas Longhorns (3-1). If they rely on their balance of passing/rushing, they will give the Cowboys a run for their money.

4.) West Virginia Mountaineers
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: The reality that former QB Will Grier isn’t with the program anymore is finally starting to settle in. With a week 2 loss against Missouri (3-1) and a close win in week 4 against Kansas (2-2), the Mountaineers needed this bye-week before they went up against national championship contender Texas (3-1).

5.) Baylor Bears
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: That’s 3 wins in a row for the Bears, who look to make it 4 as they host the Iowa State Cyclones (2-1). If Junior QB Charlie Brewer can stay perfect and not throw an interception, they have a great chance in winning and improving to 4-0 for the first time since 2016.

6.) Oklahoma State Cowboys
Record: 3-1

7.) TCU Horned Frogs
Record: 2-1

8.) Iowa State Cyclones
Record: 2-1

9.) Texas Tech Red Raiders
Record: 2-1

10.) Kansas Jayhawks
Record: 2-2

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Big Ten

1.) #5 Ohio State Buckeyes
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Outscoring their first 4 opponents 216-36, the Ohio State Buckeyes look more dominant then ever before. With coach Meyer gone and an untested QB, in Justin Fields, the thought was that the Buckeyes weren’t going to succeed this year. But, as usual, the Buckeyes have proven critics wrong…for the most part. The next test for The Ohio State University is traveling to Nebraska to face the Cornhuskers (3-1). QB Justin Fields has been near perfect from the pocket throwing 66-95, 880 yards, and 13 touchdowns on his way to placing his name in the hat for Heisman candidacy.

2.) #8 Wisconsin Badgers
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: A 49-0 blowout of South Florida, the squashing of Central Michigan 61-0, and the beating of a very disgruntled Michigan 35-14 has put Wisconsin back on the map after just an 8-5 season a year ago. Junior RB Jonathan Taylor, who has 440 yards and 7 touchdowns so far this season, looks to keep up his success on the ground against a pesky Northwestern team who is looking to play spoiler to their division rival.

3.) #12 Penn State Nittany Lions
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: A too-close-for-comfort game versus Pittsburgh last week shook-up Penn State, but they got the win nonetheless 17-10 and improved to 3-0 this season. Having one of the top-10 highest scoring offenses in the FBS, the Nittany Lions are looking to topple the, surprisingly, rising Maryland Terrapins in week 5.

4.) #14 Iowa Hawkeyes
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: The Hawkeyes haven’t seen success since their run for the national championship in 2015 where they almost made it into the playoffs, but feel just short with a lose to Michigan State in the last week of the regular season. Since then, Iowa has gone 8-5 in 2016, 8-5 in 2017, and 9-4 last year. With Senior QB Nate Stanley at the helm, Iowa is looking to take it to Middle Tennessee this week.

5.) #25 Michigan State Spartans
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Similar to the Hawkeyes, the Spartans haven’t seen a truly successful session since 2015 when they went to the College Football Playoffs, only to lose to Alabama 38-0. They have since had one losing season (2016) and have had two bowl games (2017/2018) winning against Washington State in 2017 and losing to Oregon last year. And also similar to the Hawkeyes, Michigan State will look to bring back the glory of winning to their program as they host the Indiana Hoosiers this week.

6.) #20 Michigan Wolverines
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: What is there to say about the Wolverines at this point? For a team to start in the top-10 at the beginning of the season, to fall to 20th in just three weeks…this isn’t what 5th year Head Coach Jim Harbaugh was looking towards this year. Barely beating Army 24-21 and then losing in horrible fashion to Wisconsin last week 35-14, Michigan needs to step-up their game…and quick. They get a relatively easy opponent this week to do just that in Rutgers, but if the Scarlet Knights score more than 21 points on Michigan, you could write off the Wolverines as a top-25 team by the end of this season. And you could say good-bye to old Harbaugh on the way out the door.

7.) Maryland Terrapins
Record: 2-1

8.) Nebraska Cornhuskers
Record: 3-1

9.) Minnesota Golden Gophers
Record: 3-0

10.) Indiana Hoosiers
Record: 3-1

11.) Illinois Fighting Illini
Record: 2-2

12.) Northwestern Wildcats
Record: 1-2

13.) Purdue Boilermakers
Record: 1-2

14.) Rutgers Scarlet Knights
Record: 1-2

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Conference-USA

1.) Louisiana Tech Bulldogs
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: After losing 45-14 against Texas in week 1, the Bulldogs haven’t looked back. They’ve outscored opposing teams, since then, 98-52. With a game coming up against Rice (0-4), Louisiana Tech is looking to demolish their conference rival in quick fashion.

2.) UAB Blazers
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: Starting their best season in school history, UAB has torn through their opponents in the first three weeks. With a game against a weaker Western Kentucky team, UAB is looking to improve to 4-0 this week.

3.) Marshall Thundering Herd
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: Falling just short of an upset against Boise State in week 2, Marshall squeezed out a victory against rival Ohio University 33-31. This week they travel to the western side of Ohio as they face the Cincinnati Bearcats who are coming off a win against in-state rival Miami-OH. Led by RB Brenden Knox (247 yards, 4 touchdowns), Marshall is looking to bring the thunder to the Bearcats.

4.) North Texas Mean Green
Record: 2-2

5.) Charlotte 49ers
Record: 2-2

6.) Florida Atlantic Owls
Record: 2-2

7.) Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles
Record: 2-2

8.) Western Kentucky Hilltoppers
Record: 1-2

9.) Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders
Record: 1-2

10.) Old Dominion Monarchs
Record: 1-2

11.) UTEP Miners
Record: 1-2

12.) Florida International Panthers
Record: 1-3

13.) USTA Roadrunners
Record: 1-3

14.) Rice Owls
Record: 0-4

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FBS Independents

1.) #10 Notre Dame
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: Coming off a tough-to-swallow lose to #3 Georgia 23-17, the Fighting Irish look to bounce back against the #18 Virginia Cavaliers. With one lose already this season and 3 more potential top-25 games, Notre Dame can not afford to lose another game and expect to get into the playoffs later this year…especially with the amount of talent teams like Clemson, Ohio State, and LSU have. The key to Notre Dame’s success is to not rely on their defensive as much as they have been. Generate those points on offense more often.

2.) Army Black Knights
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Since failing to knock-down Michigan in week 2, the Black Knights have won two in a row. This week they have a bye on the route to facing Western Kentucky.

3.) BYU Cougars
Record: 2-2

4.) Liberty Flames
Record: 2-2

5.) New Mexico State Aggies
Record: 0-4

6.) UMass Minutemen
Record: 0-4

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Mid-American Conference

1.) Eastern Michigan Eagles
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: With a week 4 win against Central Connecticut (3-1), the Eagles are looking toward in-state rival Central Michigan after their bye-week.

2.) Toledo Rockets
Record: 2-1
Bottom Line: With two wins in a row for the Rockets, Toledo is riding a train of momentum into this week’s match-up against visiting BYU.

3.) Kent State Golden Flashes
Record: 2-2

4.) Buffalo Bulls
Record: 2-2

5.) Central Michigan Chippewas
Record: 2-2

6.) Western Michigan Broncos
Record: 2-2

7.) Northern Illinois Huskies
Record: 1-2

8.) Miami-OH RedHawks
Record: 1-3

9.) Ball State Cardinals
Record: 1-3

10.) Ohio Bobcats
Record: 1-3

11.) Bowling Green Falcons
Record: 1-3

12.) Akron Zips
Record: 0-4

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Mountain West

1.) #16 Boise State Broncos
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: This is the 4th win the a row for the Broncos this season with a 30-19 win against Air Force being their most recent. With a bye this week and being the sole ranked team from the Mountain West Conference, one could only wonder, if Boise State continues to win and potentially wins out, how far up the ranking will they be able to reach?

2.) Nevada Wolfpack
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: With a 2-win streak after they were destroyed by Oregon, Nevada is on their way to challenging Boise State for the MWC championship later this year. With a game against their 3-1 division rival Hawai’i coming up this week, Nevada is looking to make them the sole 4-1 team in the western division of the MWC.

3.) Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors
Record: 3-1

4.) Wyoming Cowboys
Record: 3-1

5.) San Diego State Aztecs
Record: 3-1

6.) Utah State Aggies
Record: 2-1

7.) New Mexico Lobos
Record: 2-1

8.) San Jose State Spartans
Record: 2-1

9.) Air Force Falcons
Record: 2-1

10.) Fresno State Bulldogs
Record: 1-2

11.) UNLV Rebels
Record: 1-2

12.) Colorado State Rams
Record: 1-3

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PAC-12

1.) #15 California Golden Bears
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Being the only remaining undefeated PAC-12 team remaining, the California Golden Bears are looking toward their week 5 opponent Arizona State. Ranking below Oregon, the Golden Bears will be facing the Ducks in two weeks to face off between the top teams of the PAC-12.

2.) #13 Oregon Ducks
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: The highest ranking PAC-12 team already has a lose on the year against Auburn. If they lose again, they can kiss their dream of the playoffs good-bye. They have a bye this week before they host #15 California for a top-25, PAC1-12 rivalry game that could see the winner, winning the conference later this year.

3.) #17 Washington Huskies
Record: 3-1

4.) #21 USC Trojans
Record: 3-1

5.) Colorado Buffaloes
Record: 3-1

6.) #19 Utah Utes
Record: 3-1

7.) Washington State Cougars
Record: 3-1

8.) Arizona State Sun Devils
Record: 3-1

9.) Arizona Wildcats
Record:2-1

10.) Oregon State Beavers
Record: 1-2

11.) UCLA Bruins
Record: 1-3

12.) Stanford Cardinals
Record: 1-3

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South-Eastern Conference

1.) #4 LSU Tigers
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: With one top-10 win already under their belt, and the destruction of their other non-conference opponents, LSU looks more dominant then ever before. With a bye week this week, the Tigers will look to keep their undefeated season alive as they host Utah State on October 5th. Later this year, Senior QB Joe Burrow (1520 yards passing, 80.6% completion percentage, and 17 touchdowns) and company will face not one, not two, not even three, but four top-25 opponents, three of which are currently in the top-10.

2.) #3 Georgia Bulldogs
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Coming off an impressive defensive win against Notre Dame, the Bulldogs are going to be on a bye this week. Georgia will face Tennessee the week after as they try to finish up their “easy” schedule ahead of their game on November 2nd against current #9 Florida.

3.) #7 Auburn Tigers
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Winning their first of a potential five top-25 games, including four potential top-10 games. One could assume, if Auburn wins all, but maybe one of those games, Auburn could punch their ticket to at least the SEC Championship game…if they can get past long-time rival Alabama at the end of the season. Until then, the Tigers must travel to current #9 Florida on October 5th, travel to current #4 LSU on October 26th, and host the #3 Georgia Bulldogs on November 16th.

4.) #2 Alabama Crimson Tide
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: Alabama may be #2 in the country, but they are #4 on this power rankings list because they lack a “signature” win against a top-25 team. They have played teams who aren’t even sniffing the top-25 at this point and won’t face a top-25 team until October 12th against current #23 Texas A&M, who may not even be ranked by that time. If that’s the case, then the Crimson Tide will have to wait until November 9th when they host #4 LSU.

5.) #9 Florida Gators
Record: 4-0
Bottom Line: “Gator football is back!” “‘We are going to the playoffs this year!” Those who have said this, or at least thought it, should understand that, yes the Gators are #9 in the country, they also haven’t faced anybody thus far this season. The best win they have is a road win against Kentucky in week 3. Their first top-25 game comes in two weeks when they host #7 Auburn.

6.) Missouri Tigers
Record: 3-1

7.) Mississippi State Bulldogs
Record: 3-1

8.) Ole Miss Rebels
Record: 2-2

9.) #23 Texas A&M
Record: 2-2

10.) Arkansas Razorbacks
Record: 2-2

11.) Kentucky Wildcats
Record: 2-2

12.) South Carolina Gamecocks
Record: 1-3

13.) Tennessee Volunteers
Record: 1-3

14.) Vanderbilt Commodores
Record: 0-3

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Sun Belt Conference

1.) Appalachian State Mountaineers
Record: 3-0
Bottom Line: Coming off their best season in program history last season (going 11-2 and adding a New Orleans Bowl win), the Mountaineers are looking to keep their undefeated season alive as they host the 3-1 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers.

2.) Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns
Record: 3-1
Bottom Line: Adding their 3rd win beating the Ohio Bobcats 45-25 and improving their record to 3-1, the Ragin’ Cajuns are off to their best start in program history. They go up against a weakened Georgia Southern team this week in the hopes of improving to 4-1 for the first time in school history.

3.) Coastal Carolina Chanticleers
Record: 3-1

4.) Troy Trojans
Record: 2-1

5.) Arkansas State Red Wolves
Record: 2-2

6.) South Alabama Jaguars
Record: 1-3

7.) Georgia State Panthers
Record: 2-2

8.) Texas State Bobcats
Record: 1-3

9.) Georgia Southern Eagles
Record: 1-2

10.) UL Monroe Warhawks
Record: 1-2

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