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College football conference power rankings

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Brock Purdy erupts for three TDs in first half vs. K-State (1:04)

Brock Purdy comes out red hot with three touchdown passes as Iowa State has a 35-0 lead over Kansas State in the first half. (1:04)

There's a new team atop the Big 12, but there wasn't a lot of movement near the top of the other college football conferences.

Check out each conference below to see where things stand heading into Week 13.

Jump to a conference:
ACC | Big Ten | Big 12 | Pac-12 | SEC | Non-Power 5

ACC

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0:26

Blocked FG sends Liberty to first loss

With Liberty down 15-14, Alex Barbir's attempt at a 39-yard field goal is blocked by NC State, sending the Flames to their first loss.

The top four teams in the ACC power rankings did not play this weekend -- two of them (Clemson, Miami) for coronavirus reasons. That left a pretty ho-hum slate with only one game providing any drama. That would be Liberty at NC State, as the Flames tried to sweep all three ACC teams they played this year. As the Flames lined up for a game-winning field goal, flashbacks to two weeks ago in Blacksburg, Virginia, came to mind. In that game, Liberty got a do-over on a blocked field goal after Justin Fuente called timeout and won. In this game, though, NC State blocked the field goal attempt and there would be no do overs, as the Wolfpack handed undefeated Liberty its first loss, 15-14, to move to 6-3 on the season.

Meanwhile, Pitt embarrassed Virginia Tech 47-14 for the Hokies' third straight loss. The Panthers played without 16 players -- including three starters on the offensive line and standout receiver Jordan Addison. But you would never have known based on the performance, as Kenny Pickett threw for 404 yards. The loss left Virginia Tech grappling with its season. When coach Justin Fuente was asked whether he would consider taking over playcalling duties after the offense only scored 14 points, he said, "That is the most ridiculous crap I've ever heard." The news does not get much better for the Hokies. After an open date, they travel to play Clemson on Dec. 5. -- Andrea Adelson

1. Notre Dame
2. Clemson
3. Miami
4. North Carolina
5. NC State
6. Wake Forest
7. Boston College
8. Pitt
9. Virginia
10. Virginia Tech
11. Georgia Tech
12. Louisville
13. Florida State
14. Duke
15. Syracuse

Big 12

There were only two Big 12 games over the weekend, but they indicated a lot about where things stand in the league.

In the afternoon game, Iowa State flat-out dominated. The Cyclones shut out Kansas State and looked terrific in all facets of the game. Their defense was fast and physical, as it has been all season long. Quarterback Brock Purdy was efficient, running back Breece Hall was his usual productive self and the Cyclones looked deserving of their top-of-the-standings status.

In the nightcap, Oklahoma put Oklahoma State in a big hole early, and the Sooners ultimately finished out with a comfortable win. After an 0-2 start to the season, the Sooners are back in a good position, still in firm contention for a Big 12 title game berth.

There are two spots in the league championship game up for grabs, and Iowa State, Oklahoma and Texas are the primary contenders for the spots. Each team is in a win-out-and-they're-in scenario. As a result, Friday's upcoming Iowa State-Texas tilt will be huge. -- Sam Khan Jr.

1. Iowa State
2. Oklahoma
3. Texas
4. Oklahoma State
5. West Virginia
6. Kansas State
7. TCU
8. Texas Tech
9. Baylor
10. Kansas

Big Ten

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0:23

Michigan holds off Rutgers in 3OT

Rutgers fails to score in triple overtime as Michigan snaps a three-game losing streak with a 48-42 victory.

College football's biggest game of the past week belonged to the Big Ten, and it didn't disappoint as Ohio State edged out Indiana 42-35. The Buckeyes stay atop the power rankings with the win, and Indiana doesn't budge from the No. 3 spot. Indiana proved themselves to be a Hoosier team unlike any other we've ever seen.

Elsewhere, Northwestern jumps to No. 2 after a 17-7 win over Wisconsin, remaining the only other unbeaten Big Ten team alongside Ohio State. Penn State continued its struggles -- dropping to 0-5 with a loss to Iowa -- but stay a spot above last place with Illinois cruising past Nebraska. -- Harry Lyles Jr.

1. Ohio State
2. Northwestern
3. Indiana
4. Iowa
5. Wisconsin
6. Maryland
7. Minnesota
8. Michigan State
9. Michigan
10. Purdue
11. Illinois
12. Rutgers
13. Penn State
14. Nebraska

Pac-12

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2:27

Oregon forces 4 turnovers, Shough throws 3 TDs in win

Oregon's defense takes advantage of four UCLA turnovers and quarterback Tyler Shough throws three touchdown passes in their narrow 38-35 win over the Bruins.

Leading into Tuesday's College Football Playoff rankings release, Oregon could have really used a complete performance to make its case for the committee. That didn't happen. Quarterback Tyler Shough looked good, but the Ducks struggled to run the ball in a 38-35 win against UCLA.

The Ducks still deserve to be considered the class of the Pac-12, but both USC and Washington had improved showings in the third week of conference play -- Washington especially. The Huskies led Arizona 37-0 going into the third quarter in a 44-27 win and played like a team capable of winning the division. USC's 33-17 win against Utah was the Trojans' best showing heading into a key game against Colorado next week. -- Kyle Bonagura

1. Oregon
2. USC
3. Washington
4. Colorado
5. Washington State
6. UCLA
7. Utah
8. Cal
9. Arizona State
10. Oregon State
11. Stanford
12. Arizona

SEC

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2:45

Auburn comes out on top in battle against Tennessee

No. 23 Auburn uses a big second half to grind out a 30-17 win over Tennessee.

Might this be the week someone challenges Alabama?

It has been more than a month since the No. 1 team in the country has been in a close game. Back when Georgia was ranked third, it was tight for a half before the Crimson Tide ultimately pulled away. A week before that, Ole Miss roped Alabama into a shootout and nearly pulled off the upset.

Since that two-game stretch, Alabama has steamrolled Tennessee, Mississippi State and Kentucky, and it had its game against LSU postponed.

But Auburn could make things interesting. The Tigers have quietly played better of late, trouncing LSU and beating Tennessee by two touchdowns last Saturday.

Gus Malzahn's team isn't perfect. Tank Bigsby is banged up and the run defense is a little suspect. But it has Bo Nix, Seth Williams and Anthony Schwartz, as well as an improving offensive line.

Alabama has been susceptible to pre-snap motion and the run-pass option, and that's right in Malzahn's wheelhouse.

If Bigsby comes back and Auburn generates a running game, they could test the Tide defense and potentially make a game of it. -- Alex Scarborough

1. Alabama
2. Florida
3. Texas A&M
4. Georgia
5. Auburn
6. Missouri
7. LSU
8. Arkansas
9. Ole Miss
10. Kentucky
11. Tennessee
12. Mississippi State
13. South Carolina
14. Vanderbilt

Group of 5/Independents

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0:44

Coastal Carolina ices game with pick-six

D'Jordan Strong intercepts the pass and goes 38-yards for the touchdown, giving the Chanticleers a double-digit lead with under two minutes remaining.

The top of these selections won't change since all three teams won, though each game was unique. Cincinnati won a hard-fought battle against UCF, BYU dominated North Alabama and Coastal Carolina became the first Sun Belt team in history to start 8-0 by beating Appalachian State in a nail-biter.

Marshall and Louisiana stay put because of their games being postponed and canceled, respectively. Boise State and Tulsa both won and remain behind Marshall and Louisiana, while Liberty drops to No. 8 after narrowly losing to NC State, going 2-1 on the season against ACC opponents. -- Harry Lyles Jr.

1. Cincinnati
2. BYU
3. Coastal Carolina
4. Marshall
5. Louisiana
6. Boise State
7. Tulsa
8. Liberty
9. SMU
10. Appalachian State