Southern California drops out and Ohio State jumps into the top four of the final USA TODAY Sports NCAA Re-Rank 1-131 of the regular season.
The Buckeyes climb to No. 4 after the Trojans' 47-23 loss to Utah. USC falls two spots to No. 6 while the Utes rise four to No. 9 after claiming another Pac-12 championship.
Ohio State did not move ahead of No. 3 TCU, however. Despite losing in overtime to No. 8 Kansas State, the Horned Frogs hold off the Buckeyes by virtue of eight wins against eventual bowl teams. TCU also defeated the Wildcats during the regular season.
The Trojans were not so lucky. A second defeat at the hands of Utah cost them the Pac-12 championship and also opened the door for a contender to step through. That beneficiary was the Ohio State, which didn't play Saturday after losing to Michigan last week but still improved one place into the coveted No. 4 position.
The re-rank begins with the College Football Playoff-bound group of Georgia, Michigan, TCU and Ohio State. Then comes No. 5 Tennessee, USC, No. 7 Alabama, Kansas State, Utah and No. 10 Clemson.
No conference had more teams in the Top 25 than the Pac-12 with six: USC, Utah, No. 12 Washington, No. 14 Oregon State, No. 15 Oregon and No. 17 UCLA. The SEC had five: Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, No. 20 LSU and No. 21 South Carolina.
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The Big Ten had three — Michigan, OSU and No. 11 Penn State — as did the Big 12, with TCU, Kansas State and No. 22 Texas. The ACC had just two in Clemson and No. 18 Florida State. The rest of the Top 25 consists of No. 23 Notre Dame and several teams from the Group of Five in No. 13 Tulane, No. 16 Troy, No. 19 Texas-San Antonio, No. 24 South Alabama and No. 25 Cincinnati.
There were also big drops for the losers from conference championship weekend. No. 37 Purdue dropped six after the loss to Michigan, No. 40 Boise State fell 16 spots after losing to Fresno State and No. 45 Ohio is down eight after dropping the MAC championship game to Toledo.
The Re-Rank will get one more update after the conclusion of bowl games and the national championship in January.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: College football Re-Rank: Ohio State takes No. 4 spot from USC