The Washington Times - September 25, 2011, 08:53AM

Who is the nation’s top-ranked team as September comes to a close?

Based on inertia, it will be Oklahoma. After all the Sooners were No. 1 last week and didn’t lose. That’s usually a winning formula when sportswriters are involved in the voting.


Based on dominance of a touted foe, it will be Alabama. The Crimson Tide obliterated visiting Arkansas on Saturday, swatting down the Razorbacks’ hopes of a national title in their first meaningful test of the season.

Based on resume —- the defining quality in this weekly post —- it is Louisiana State. Les Miles and Co. have upended Oregon (on a neutral field), Mississippi State (on the road) and West Virginia (on the road). Perhaps beating the Bulldogs wasn’t as meaningful as it first appeared, but that could change. Oregon and West Virginia each depart September with a loss to Louisiana State as a lone blemish.

Given the Jordan Jefferson saga at the start of the season, it is impressive just how well Miles navigated the Tigers through the month. Having a ridiculously talented defense helps, too. Still, only three more games away from Death Valley remain for Louisiana State; trouble is, one of them is Nov. 5 at Alabama, a game that already should have college football fans salivating.

This week’s full D1scourse 30, which is a results-based take and remains highly fluid early in the seasons since each team’s resume is in its formative stage (and especially so this week, when the last remnants of preseason expectations were removed from the evaluation of each team):


No. Team
W-L    LW   
1. Louisiana State
4-0 2 * Oregon (N), West Virginia (A), Mississippi St. (A)      
2. Oklahoma
3-0 1 * Florida State (A), Missouri (H), Tulsa (H)
3. Alabama
4-0 4 * Arkansas (H), Penn State (A), North Texas (H)
4. Oklahoma State
4-0 8

* Texas A&M (A), Arizona (H), Tulsa (A)

5. Clemson
4-0 12 * Florida State (H), Auburn (H), Troy (H)
6. South Carolina
4-0 5 * Georgia (A), Navy (H), Vanderbilt (H), ECU (N)
7. Boise State
3-0 3 * Georgia (N), Toledo (A), Tulsa (H)
8. South Florida
4-0 7 * Notre Dame (A), UTEP (H), Ball State (H)
9. Michigan
4-0 15 * Notre Dame (H), San Diego St. (H), W. Michigan (H)
10. Baylor
3-0 14 * TCU (H), Rice (H)
11. Nebraska
4-0 6 * Washington (H), Fresno State (H), Wyoming (A)
12. Florida
4-0 21 * Tennessee (H), Kentucky (A), UAB (H), FAU (H)
13. Virginia Tech
4-0 11 * East Carolina (A), Marshall (A), Arkansas St. (H)
14. Georgia Tech
4-0 28 * UNC (H), Kansas (H), Middle Tennessee (A)
15. Wisconsin
4-0 10 * Oregon State (H), N. Illinois (N), UNLV (H)
16. Stanford
3-0 9 * Arizona (A), Duke (A), San Jose State (H)
17. Oregon
3-1 19 * Arizona (A), Nevada (H); L: LSU (N)
18. Texas
3-0 22

* BYU (H), UCLA (A), Rice (H)

19. Illinois
4-0 23 * Arizona St. (H), W. Michigan (H), Arkansas St. (H)
20. West Virginia
3-1 20 * Maryland (A), Marshall (H); L: LSU (H)
21. Texas A&M
2-1 13 * SMU (H), Idaho (H); L: Oklahoma State (H)
22. Texas Christian  
3-1 24 * Air Force (A), UL Monroe (H); L: Baylor (A)
23. Auburn
3-1 25 * Mississippi St. (A), Utah St. (H); L: Clemson (A)
24. Arizona State
3-1 26 * USC (H), Missouri (OT-H); L: Illinois (A)
25. Arkansas
3-1 18 * Troy (H), New Mexico (H); L: Alabama (A)
26. North Carolina
3-1 27

* Rutgers (H), Virginia (H); L: Ga. Tech (A)

27. Iowa State
3-0 30 * Iowa (OT-H), UConn (A)
28. Kansas State
3-0 NR

* Miami (A), Kent State (H)

29. Southern Cal
3-1 16

* Utah (H), Cuse (H), Minnesota (H); L: Ariz. St. (A)

30. Houston
4-0 NR * UCLA (H), Louisiana Tech (A), North Texas (A)


Fell out: No. 17 Florida State, No. 29 Florida International

—- Patrick Stevens