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UCF up to 9th in CFP, top 4 unchanged

(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame and Michigan were at the top of the College Football Playoff rankings Tuesday night, marking the first time in the five-year history of the postseason system that the same teams held the first four spots for three straight weeks.

Unlike last week, there was a little movement in the top 10. Unbeaten Central Florida moved up two spots to No. 9. The Knights became the first team from outside the Power Five conference to be ranked in the selection committee's top 10.

Georgia remained No. 5, followed by Oklahoma at sixth. LSU remained seventh, Washington State held at 8 and Ohio State stayed at 10th, getting jumped by UCF.


Michigan may have edge on D vs. Ohio St.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) No. 4 Michigan has the nation's top-ranked defense with NFL-caliber players at each position group and one of the game's best coordinators calling the shots.

The Wolverines, though, have not been tested as much as they will be by No. 10 Ohio State and quarterback Dwayne Haskins on Saturday in the Horseshoe. And they know this edition of The Game will define their season.


Grier, West Virginia ready for Oklahoma

West Virginia quarterback Will Grier finally is getting his shot at playing Oklahoma.

Grier missed last year's meeting with a broken finger and the Mountaineers were blown out in Norman, Oklahoma. The senior will play his final home game Friday and can send No. 12 West Virginia (8-2, 6-2 Big 12) into the Dec. 1 league championship game with a win over the sixth-ranked Sooners (10-1, 7-1).


Washington State eyes Pac-12 North title

PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) A year that began in tragedy for Washington State is wrapping up with the Cougars on the brink of unparalleled success.

Players began spring workouts with heavy hearts after the January suicide of quarterback Tyler Hilinski. The offseason departure of six assistant coaches and head coach Mike Leach's flirtation with the Tennessee job then contributed to the outside perception that little should be expected of the Cougars this year. They were picked to finish fifth in the Pac-12 North.


UMass parting ways with coach Whipple

A person familiar with the decision says Massachusetts is working on parting ways with coach Mark Whipple, who has led the Minutemen to just 16 victories in six seasons during his second stint at the school.

The person spoke Tuesday to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because details of a deal were still being worked out. Whipple, 61, has two years remaining on a contract that pays $500,000 annually in base salary.


No. 13 Florida hopes to end skid vs. FSU

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) C'yontai Lewis' losing streak to Florida State feels even longer than it actually is.

Not only has the Florida tight end lost all four games to the Seminoles during his college career, but the fifth-year senior was part of another setback in 2013. Lewis was on his official visit to Florida that year and witnessed the program's worst defeat (37-7) to rival FSU since 1988.


Gamecocks think gap closing on Clemson

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) South Carolina's last trip to Clemson was memorable for all the wrong reasons. Two years later, the Gamecocks believe the gap with their highly ranked rival is closing.

In 2016, overmatched South Carolina did about everything wrong and left Death Valley on the bad end of a 56-7 beatdown, one of the most lopsided losses in Palmetto State rivalry history .


Wisconsin RB Taylor ready for Minnesota

MADISON, Wis. (AP) All the carries were starting to get to Wisconsin's' Jonathan Taylor.

By his own admission, he wasn't at full speed late in a marathon game against Purdue, though it sure didn't look like it in triple overtime.


GT seeking 5th win in row vs. Georgia

ATLANTA (AP) Following an ugly loss to Clemson on Sept. 22, Georgia Tech was 1-3 with three straight losses and appeared bound for a second straight losing season.

"The sky was falling after that game," coach Paul Johnson recalled on Tuesday.


No. 25 Iowa St. has plenty of goals left

AMES, Iowa (AP) Its winning streak snapped and no longer in contention for a championship, No. 25 Iowa State now has to focus on something else.

That should not be a problem for coach Matt Campbell and his players because they still can go where few Iowa State teams have gone before.

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