After a season-high seven ranked teams lost, the back half of the Associated Press college football poll received a makeover. Five teams entered the Top 25 on Sunday, including No. 17 Kentucky for the first time since 2007.
Kentucky is unbeaten and 2-0 in the Southeastern Conference for the first time since 1977. The last time the Wildcats were ranked was Nov. 11, 2007. Kentucky reached No. 8 under coach Rich Brooks that season and upset No. 1 and eventual national champion LSU but finished unranked.
The Atlantic Coast Conference has three ranked teams in the Top 25 for the third time in four regular-season polls. No. 3 Clemson has played mostly as advertised, and the No. 16 Miami Hurricanes are slowly creeping back up the rankings after a lopsided opening loss to LSU sent the Hurricanes tumbling out of the top 10.
Florida State lasted one week in the rankings, and now Virginia Tech is out after maybe the most stunning result of the season so far. The Hokies lost 49-35 at previously winless Old Dominion. Boston College seemed to be emerging as a possible dark horse, but the Eagles also lasted only week. BC lost 30-13 at Purdue on Saturday after being No. 23 last week.
Unbeaten Duke entered the rankings at No. 22 this week to keep the ACC from becoming the first Power 5 conference to have a week this season with only two ranked teams.
Two seasons removed from Clemson winning a national title, Louisville's Lamar Jackson winning the Heisman Trophy -- with Clemson's Deshaun Watson as runner-up -- and the ACC finishing with a 9-3 record in bowl games, the conference could use a team or two to separate from mediocrity. North Carolina State (3-0) and Syracuse (4-0) are the only other unbeaten teams in the ACC, along with Clemson.
No. 14 Michigan is back where it started the season, moving up five spots this week. Miami also jumped five places, but that movement had as much to do with the teams around the Wolverines and Hurricanes losing. The seven ranked teams that lost Saturday were positioned between No. 13 and No. 23 in the rankings.
Among the losing teams, No. 23 Mississippi State, pounded by Kentucky, and No. 19 Oregon, which let a victory slip away against No. 7 Stanford, managed to remain ranked. The Bulldogs dropped nine spots. The Ducks moved up one.
Joining Kentucky and Duke, ranked for the first time since October 2015, were two newcomers to this season's rankings and one returner.