Not long after No. 10 Louisville completed its 63-20 demolition of No. 2 Florida State, college football fans got another scoreboard shock, as No. 19 Ole Miss got up 24-3 on No. 1 Alabama at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.
The Crimson Tide escaped with a thrilling 48-43 win, but the game was a reminder that the projected Top 25 is always fluid on Saturdays.
Here’s our best guess at what the Associated Press voters will go with on Sunday (and we’ll make sure to update at the conclusion of Saturday’s late games):
25. San Diego State (3-0)
(Entering week: Unranked) After building a 28-7 halftime lead at Northern Illinois, the Aztecs nearly let the game slip away. But star running back D.J. Pumphrey (3 touchdowns, second straight 200-yard rushing day) helped the road team seal a 42-28 win against the Huskies.
24. Oklahoma (1-2)
(Entering week: No. 14) Much like the Rebels, the Sooners have a pair of losses against high-quality teams, though Baker Mayfield and Co. have failed to remain very competitive in either game. Saturday’s blowout loss to Ohio State likely knocks Oklahoma out of the national championship picture.
23. Ole Miss (1-2)
(Entering week: No. 19) The sheer amount of carnage in the back half of this week’s Top 25 should keep the Rebels around despite a losing record. Losses to Alabama (No. 1 entering the week) and Florida State (No. 2 entering the week) aren’t exactly black eyes on Mississippi’s resumé.
22. TCU (2-1)
(Entering week: Unranked) It wasn’t pretty, but TCU — ranked No. 13 in the preseason poll — beat Iowa State by 21 points to avenge a Week 2 home loss against Arkansas.
21. Texas (2-1)
(Entering week: No. 11) The Longhorns got into a shootout they couldn’t win, falling to Cal by 7 points on the road. The Big 12 might fail to place a single team in the Top 15 on Sunday.
20. Nebraska (3-0)
(Entering week: Unranked) Coach Mike Riley lost seven straight to Oregon while he was at Oregon State, but he got his revenge Saturday in Lincoln with a 35-32 victory over the Ducks.
19. Arkansas (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 24) The Hogs beat Texas State by 39 points, and now will gear up for their SEC opener against Texas A&M, which also put together an impressive win on Saturday (see below).
18. Florida (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 23) Quarterback Luke Del Rio’s late knee injury was a fitting end to a bruising 32-0 win over North Texas in which the Gators couldn’t quite spin a shootout against the pesky Mean Green.
17. Miami (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 25) Mark Richt’s new program was a trendy pick to be upset by Appalachian State this week, but the Hurricanes responded with an impressive 45-10 win in Boone.
16. Baylor (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 21) The Bears keep ignoring the off-field catastrophe in Waco, and are still an important part of this year’s championship race. A Friday win at Rice allowed them to sit back and watch Saturday’s action.
15. LSU (2-1)
(Entering week: No. 20) Outscored 17-0 in the fourth quarter, LSU barely hung on against Mississippi State for a 23-20 win. Things aren’t looking much more promising for the Tigers offense with Danny Etling under center.
14. Wisconsin (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 9) The Badgers struggled mightily in a 6-point home win over lowly Georgia State, but there was enough chaos in front of them to prevent a huge fall.
13. Florida State (2-1)
(Entering week: No. 2) After a 43-point beatdown in Louisville, the championship-minded Seminoles likely need to win out to earn a spot in the national playoff.
12. Tennessee (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 15) We’re still waiting on the Volunteers to put together 60 minutes of good football after an unconvincing 9-point win over Ohio. Tennessee will try to snap an 11-game losing streak against Florida on Saturday.
11. Texas A&M (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 17) The Aggies didn’t play like underdogs at Auburn, gutting out a defensive battle that kept Kevin Sumlin’s team undefeated heading into next week’s showdown with Arkansas.
10. Georgia (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 16) True freshman Jacob Eason threw a last-minute touchdown to Isaiah McKenzie for his second career fourth-quarter comeback win. The Bulldogs trailed for most of the second half at Missouri, but intercepted Drew Lock three times in the second half to help snag the win.
9. Michigan State (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 12) A blowout turned into a nail-biter as MSU nearly let a huge lead slip away on the road. Tyler O’Connor’s late third-down completion helped the Spartans bleed out the clock and turn away Notre Dame in South Bend.
8. Washington (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 8) The Huskies got up 28-0 at halftime against Portland State then let their foot off the gas, coasting to a 41-3 win against the FCS Vikings. Washington opens its Pac-12 schedule at Arizona next weekend. A home game vs. Stanford looms on Sept. 30.
7. Stanford (2-0)
(Entering week: No. 7) A 17-point win over a rival that was ranked in the preseason Top 25 counts as a strong week for the Cardinal, who smacked around USC in Palo Alto on Saturday night.
6. Houston (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 6) The Cougars’ Thursday-night win over Cincinnati was tighter than expected, but they got enough breathing room in the fourth quarter to keep voters happy. Now, about that soft upcoming schedule…
5. Clemson (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 5) The Tigers finally got a breather after two weeks of underwhelming performances. Saturday’s 59-0 win over South Carolina State was so ugly, the teams agreed to cut the game short.
4. Michigan (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 4) Maize and blue fans were having flashbacks of Kordell Stewart as the Wolverines fell behind the visiting Buffaloes early. But several big plays in the second half — including a punt-return touchdown by jack-of-all-trades Jabrill Peppers — helped turn the contest into a late laugher.
3. Louisville (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 10) Even those who were riding the Louisville bandwagon were unaware that Bobby Petrino’s team had a 43-point win over Florida State up its sleeve. Lamar Jackson (18 total touchdowns this season) is the runaway Heisman favorite after Week 3.
2. Ohio State (2-0)
(Entering week: No. 3) We appear to be heading toward another dramatic Big Ten race, and the Buckeyes are leading the way after a 45-24 win over high-powered Oklahoma in Norman.
1. Alabama (3-0)
(Entering week: No. 1) The Crimson Tide got down 24-3 against a team that had defeated them two years in a row, but battled back for an impressive 48-43 win on the road. Alabama should remain the easy No. 1 choice for voters this weekend.