Things got very interesting quickly in college football last week. The near upsets from week one turned into upsets in week two. Several national championship contenders went down before we even reach the end of September.
Biggest winner of week two has to be the Pac-12 (sans Colorado and Utah) from the pre-expansion teams. That means the Big Ten is the biggest looser this week and the conference laid an egg before their normal New Year's Day implosion.
Arkansas provided the biggest story line when Louisiana-Monroe pulled off the shocker of the weekend. Missouri and Texas A&M got welcomed into the SEC and the new kids didn't come away with a victory.
Even though we are two weeks into the season, here is how I rank the big six (BCS conferences) from play last week. After the conference rankings are my week three winners for the rest of college football (Mississippi teams here).
I have to excuse the meltdown by Utah and Colorado. The Utes fell 27-20 to Utah State and Colorado went down 30-28 to Sacramento State.
Normally that would hurt a conference but when the rest of the conference steps up like last Saturday, it is hard to hold those loses against the Pac-12. California even bounced back with a 50-31 win over Eastern Washington. Stanford easily took care of Duke 50-13.
USC and Oregon took care of business against Syracuse and Fresno State. The Trojans and the Ducks didn't completely dominate but they won handily.
The best part of the Pac-12's weekend was Oregon State downing Wisconsin 10-7, UCLA surprising Nebraska 36-30, Arizona State thumping Illinois 45-14 and Arizona pounding Oklahoma State 59-38.
Last year the Beavers, Bruins, Sun Devils and Wildcats were all middle of the road to bad football teams. The Pac-12 looked top heavy with Oregon and USC but maybe there will be some intrigue in conference play.
Arkansas deserves a little bit of a break in their loss to Louisiana-Monroe. Once Tyler Wilson went out with a concussion the Razorbacks looked lost on offense. The bulk of the blame has to fall on head coach John L. Smith for not giving Knile Davis the ball a bunch. Davis only had 16 carries in the game.
LSU rained on the Pac-12's big day by spanking Washington 41-3. To be honest, the Huskies never had a chance against the Tigers in a night game at LSU.
The rest of the SEC handled business. Alabama, South Carolina, and Tennessee all cruised to victory. Even Kentucky was victorious.
Florida and Georgia introduced Texas A&M and Missouri to SEC football. I bet the Tigers never mention "old-man football" and Georgia in the same sentence again. The Aggies looked good early against the Gators but couldn't get anything going offensively in the second half.
Even with the Oklahoma State loss and Kansas finding away to lose to Rice 25-24, the Big-12 was the third best conference last week.
Kansas State spanked Miami (FL) 52-13 in a game that makes you wonder how far the mighty Hurricanes will fall. Iowa State beat in-state rival Iowa 9-6 in a game that set offense back to 1940's.
Texas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, and TCU all took care of lesser opponents last week. West Virginia had the week off.
It wasn't the greatest week for the Big-12 but the conference didn't lay too many stinkers.
Normally the Big Ten waits until New Year's Day against the SEC before getting spanked all over the country. Last week really hurt the conference nationally. It is tough to say you're a major power and you keep getting pounded against the other major conferences.
Things started badly for the Big Ten when Notre Dame defeated Purdue 20-17 on a last second field goal. Not that losing to the Irish is terrible but it just added to the bad day the Big Ten would receive.
The only light at the end last week's tunnel Minnesota defeating New Hampshire 44-7, Ohio State downing Central Florida 31-16 and Indiana was all over Massachusetts 45-6.
Even Michigan struggled to defeat Air Force 31-25. Northwestern got the best win of the week against Vanderbilt. If that isn't troubling for Big Ten fans, the maybe the thought that Michigan State is the conference's only real national champion contender.
If the Spartans lose to Notre Dame this Saturday the Big Ten will be out of the title picture. Ohio State can run the table but can't go to a bowl game.
Even thought the ACC didn't have a terrible weekend, you can't give it a bump in the standings when the conferences best wins were against bad teams from other BCS conferences. It doesn't help the conference that Florida State finished up their two game exhibition season beating Savannah State 55-0 in a game called early due to weather.
Virginia got a win over Penn State after the Nittany Lions missed multiple field goals and an extra point. I hope the Cavaliers send a thank you card to the NCAA for the assist.
North Carolina State and Maryland got wins over the Big East. The Wolfpack defeated Connecticut 10-7 and Terrapins out lasted Temple 36-27.
Virginia Tech, Boston College and Georgia Tech all beat the crap out FCS teams. Wake Forest defeated North Carolina to set up a big show down against the Seminoles this week.
It has not been a great start for the Big East. The best win the conference has is Louisville beating Kentucky to open the season. Pittsburgh has looked terrible but the Big East gets rid of the Panthers next season with Syracuse on to the ACC.
Speaking of the Orange, they played well against USC but didn't have the firepower to beat the Trojans. Syracuse is one of the best 0-2 teams in the country.
South Florida sunk out against Nevada, last Saturday but the Bulls fell to Rutgers on Thursday night. The Scarlet Knights are 3-0 new coach Kyle Flood.
Right now Louisville is carrying the conference flag at 2-0. The Cardinals are the best chance for the Big East to make noise on the national stage.
One week can change everything is college football, so check back next week to see where the conferences stand. Now on to the week three winner which will be in bold.
College football week three picks (winners in bold):
Wake Forest at Florida State
California at Ohio State
Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh
TCU at Kansas
Louisiana-Monroe at Auburn
Connecticut at Maryland
Alabama at Arkansas
North Carolina at Louisville
Northern Iowa at Iowa
Texas A&M at SMU
Florida at Tennessee
Ohio at Marshall
Rice at Louisiana Tech
Arizona State at Missouri
USC at Stanford
Notre Dame at Michigan State
Colorado at Fresno State
BYU at Utah