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A third straight week of shuffling at the top of the media poll would be no surprise.

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MOVING UP

For all of LSU’s offensive issues during the first half of the season, the Tigers are back where they need to be, primed to pounce in the national title race.

The Tigers moved up three spots to No. 6 in the AP rankings Sunday after beating South Carolina.

LSU’s passing game still lacks pop. Zach Mettenberger was 12 for 25 for 148 yards against the Gamecocks, and at some point he’ll need to do more. Maybe when LSU visits surprising No. 20 Texas A&M, with fast-rising Heisman contender Johnny Manziel guiding the top-ranked offense in the SEC.

The Tigers can take comfort in the fact that a patchwork offense line and their seemingly limitless stable of talented tailbacks were able to wear down a good South Carolina defense. LSU had 258 yards rushing on 53 carries. And, of course, the Tigers’ defense is still nasty.

Alabama comes to Death Valley on Nov. 3, and it could still be a game that decides the SEC West, and maybe a spot _ or two _ in the BCS title game.

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MOVING DOWN

Lubbock, Texas, is 1,465 miles from Morgantown, W.Va., the longest trip West Virginia signed up for when it joined the Big 12.

It must have felt twice that long heading back home after Texas Tech ripped the Mountaineers.

The loss sent West Virginia tumbling from No. 5 to No. 17 as the Mountaineers couldn’t again overcome a porous defense. Only seven teams in major college football are allowing more yards per game than the Mountaineers, who are yielding 496 after the Red Raiders put up 676.

Smith and the offense couldn’t even keep it close. The senior quarterback was a pedestrian 29 for 55 for 275 yards with a touchdown pass.

So where does that leave coach Dana Holgorsen’s team? Still, very much in contention in the Big 12. A win against Kansas State on Saturday puts the Mountaineers back at the top of the standings. And no doubt Smith will put up Heisman-worthy numbers the rest of the way.

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