In one night, Texas went from a potential comeback story to a legitimate contender for the College Football Playoff.
At least that’s how some Associated Press Top 25 poll voters see it. According to polltracker.com, the No. 11-ranked Longhorns appeared on every AP ballot and were ranked as high as No. 2 by one writer after beating No. 10 Notre Dame 50-47 in double overtime on Sunday.
The Statesman’s own AP voter, Kirk Bohls, has Texas on the rise but not as high as the average voter in Week 2. In fact, a whopping 16 writers placed the Longhorns in their top 10.
That includes Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury-News, who has Texas at No. 2 behind defending national champion Alabama. Wilner liked this year’s Longhorns before it was cool, as he was one of five reporters who placed Texas in their preseason top 25.
— Jon Wilner (@wilnerhotline) September 6, 2016
Wilner also has Texas A&M in his top 10 at No. 8, after the Aggies knocked off previous No. 16 UCLA in overtime at Kyle Field. A&M is ranked No. 20 in this week’s poll.
Others who are especially high on Texas are ESPN’s Brett McMurphy — who has the Longhorns at No. 6 — and Patrick Brown of the Chattanooga Times Free-Press (No. 7).
The most popular spot for Texas among the pollsters was No. 14. Eight different reporters have the Longhorns there, while only five placed them outside the top 20.
No matter which way you slice it, the expectations just got a whole lot higher for Charlie Strong’s bunch. Oklahoma’s stumble against Houston saw the Sooners plummet to No. 14. That means Texas is the highest-ranked team in the Big 12, ahead of Oklahoma, TCU (No. 15), Oklahoma State (No. 22) and Baylor (No. 23).
It’s the first time Texas has been ranked in three seasons under Strong.
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