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Who Needs a Blog Poll 2020: Week 5 sees contenders separate themselves from a pack of mediocrity

Talent will out

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: AUG 31 Chick-fil-A Kickoff - Duke v Alabama Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This year is feeling very 2011-ish, isn’t it? There are a clear handful of contenders — perhaps half a dozen or so — but very few feel safe from week to week.

Florida’s passing defense is a huge concern. Georgia’s offense is just as much of a question mark. Alabama’s safeties, linebackers and hordes of young starters are going to invite every team in the nation to test the middle (and pray to get Pete Golding in third and long). Clemson has lost a great deal of their explosiveness, that’s apparent. There’s one team that seems capable of scoring at will, and it isn’t Auburn with a Lake. This isn’t the same kind of team we’ve seen the last 5 years, that is for sure. I don’t think anyone fully trusts UNC, Virginia Tech or Miami. Notre Dame has the ever-looming Big Game Brian Kelly moment looming. That goes double for the sole Big 12 contender standing — the perennially flaky Oklahoma State Cowboys. And even when the Big 10 begins play, the Buckeyes find themselves having to replace key pieces on both sides of the ball.

As for most teams beneath that? Yeesh. What a mess.

Here’s the Blog Poll for Week 5. Just a few quick observations:

  • I still think there’s still a good team lurking in Starkville if K.J. Costello can cut down on turnovers — he’s had six picks through two games. See also, Memphis, where Brady White has also turned it over at inopportune moments. Yesterday, it cost both of them a game.
  • Auburn’s defensive line is as soft as we’ve seen it in the Malzahn era; the corners can’t be trusted in man; there’s no feature back of note; Bo Nix hasn’t progressed one lick; and the offense simply isn’t good enough to make up for the holes on defense. This team isn’t done losing.
  • Coastal Carolina is a dangerous and fun low/mid-major. And, the odds are good you’ve not seen this squad. Catch them if you get a chance. See also, UAB.
  • SMU’s defense has progressed leaps and bounds from last year’s group, even if the offense isn’t quite as lethal. It hasn’t always been pretty, but they’re forcing turnovers and then capitalizing. This team, with a dangerous Cincinnati team that has suddenly found an offense, are the class of the AAC.
  • The Big 12 is officially wide open. You know OSU isn’t running the table; it’s not in Mullet’s constitution to win every game he should...and on paper, this team should run the table. What should be the second-tier the conference is likely to produce just as viable a B12 champion as the Big Two: Kansas State, Iowa State, Baylor.
  • Live by close game, die by the close game, Pat Narduzzi.
  • Baylor and West Virginia was as mansome as I had hoped. One day the ‘Eers offense will catch up with the defense. It won’t be a long wait. FWIW, I hated to put them below BU after winning the H2H, but I still think Baylor is probably the better overall team. Morgantown has claimed better victims than the Bears.
  • It’s a shame Army and BYU aren’t in conferences. I’d love to see what both of these squads could do against a regular cast of foes. BYU has no shot of making the CFP as an independent, but I love everything about this team. When the schedule gets tougher, we’ll see if that sentiment holds.
  • If I told you last season that I trust a Mac Jones-led Alabama offense to beat a Trevor Lawrence-manned Clemson team, would you have believed me? Because I do.

Blog Poll 2020: Week 5

1 Alabama 1
2 Clemson 2
3 Florida 3
4 Notre Dame 4
5 UGA 7
6 BYU 8
7 Okie State 9
8 Cincinnati 12
9 UNC 13
10 Miami 18
11 ULL 15
12 Tennessee --
13 Iowa State --
14 SMU --
15 Baylor 11
16 Auburn 6
17 Army 20
18 Memphis 16
19 West Virginia --
20 Kansas State --
21 Texas 5
22 Mississippi State 14
23 Texas A&M 10
24 Coastal Carolina --
25 VIrginia Tech --
OUTTA' HERE UCF (17) Pitt (19)
CONSIDERED App. State, UAB, Pitt

If the Playoffs were today...

  1. Alabama
  2. Florida
  3. Clemson
  4. Notre Dame