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Archive for Monday, October 9, 2006

Florida climbs AP poll

October 9, 2006

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— These are good days to be a Gator.

Florida is the new No. 2 in the Associated Press Top 25, its highest ranking since Steve Spurrier left Gainesville and by far the best team in the Sunshine State.

For the first time in 24 years, neither Miami nor Florida State is ranked.

Florida moved up three spots Sunday into second behind No. 1 Ohio State on the strength of a 23-10 victory over LSU on Saturday - and with a lot help from Arkansas.

The Razorbacks pulled off the first stunner of the season, beating Auburn, 27-10. The Tigers had held the No. 2 spot for three weeks. They became the first top-10 team to lose to an unranked team this season.

Arkansas is unranked no more.

The Razorbacks' big victory moved them into the rankings for the first time since October 2003. With Arkansas at No. 17, the Southeastern Conference has six teams in the Top 25. Auburn fell to No. 11.

The Buckeyes have become a runaway No. 1, with 63 of 65 first-place votes and 1,623 points. Florida has 1,516 points and jumped over No. 3 USC, which had a second consecutive close call Saturday, to become the fourth team to be No. 2 this season. Notre Dame and Texas also have been No. 2.

Mike Radano of the Courier-Post in Cherry Hill, N.J., was one of many voters to move Florida ahead of USC this week.

"USC hasn't been its same dominant self," Radano said. "I thought they got a little fortunate yesterday."

The Trojans beat Washington, 26-20, a game that ended when the Huskies couldn't get a play off from the USC 15 with two seconds left.

"I got to watch both (USC and Florida), and I was a little more impressed with Florida's offense right now," Radano said.

Michigan moved up two spots to No. 4 and West Virginia slipped a spot to No. 5, though the Mountaineers received two first-place votes.

Texas is sixth followed by Louisville, Tennessee, Notre Dame and California, which moved back into the top 10 after an impressive 45-24 victory over Oregon.

In the USA Today coaches' poll, Ohio State is No. 1 followed by USC, Florida, West Virginia and Michigan. In the Harris poll, the top five are Ohio State, USC, Florida, Michigan and West Virginia.

The Harris and coaches' poll are used in the Bowl Championship Series standings, along with computer rankings.

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