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But it’s hard to imagine West Virginia being able to avoid another loss or two with so many problems defensively.

Texas Tech moved back into the rankings at No. 18.

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IN AND OUT

The last time Ohio University was ranked, a man had not yet walked on the moon.

The unbeaten Bobcats are back this week, coming in at No. 25. Ohio finished the 1968 season ranked No. 20, back in the days when the ranking only went to 20.

The Bobcats improved to 7-0 on Saturday with yet another close victory against a Mid-American Conference rival. This time it was a 34-28 win over Akron. Ohio’s last three victories have been by a combined 16 points, none by more than seven, and they’ve come against some of the conference’s weakest teams (UMass, Buffalo and Akron).

Former Nebraska coach Frank Solich is in his eighth season in Athens, where he has gone 57-40 (39-20 in conference) but has yet to lead the Bobcats to a MAC title. An unbeaten season could put Ohio in position to become the first team from the MAC to reach the BCS.

Ohio moved in as another high-scoring potential BCS buster fell out. Louisiana Tech’s 59-57 loss at Shreveport dropped the Bulldogs out of the rankings and probably ruined any hopes for a BCS bid, but they are heading into the soft part of their schedule. Don’t be surprised if La Tech gets back in the rankings soon _ and stays there.

Texas also fell out after a 63-21 loss to Oklahoma that felt like something more than just an embarrassment for the Longhorns.

Mack Brown has been at Texas for 15 seasons. He’s won a national championship, played for another and had the Longhorns among the elite programs in the country. There have been a couple of rough patches, especially against Oklahoma, that led to grumbling among the faithful about whether Brown could win the big game. But Brown was always safe.

Over the last three seasons, Texas is 17-14 overall and 7-13 in the Big 12. Oklahoma has won the last two Red River Rivalry games by a combined 118-38. Those rumors about Brown’s job status, which mostly got laughed off last season, might become more serious this year.

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FROM THE ARCHIVES

Ohio State is No. 7 and Cincinnati is No. 21, giving the state of Ohio three ranked teams for the first time since the final AP poll of the 2003 season.

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