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Bohls: Alabama holding off rising Georgia on AP Top 25 ballot

Alabama’s still my No. 1.

By a sliver.

And Georgia is gaining ground fast.

I kept the unbeaten Crimson Tide on the top rung of my weekly Top 25 Associated Press ballot because they won, they won a big, emotional game on the road against a ranked team and they held on for the victory despite extreme adversity.

That said, Alabama’s narrow escape in the Swamp after a 21-3 early lead does give hope to any number of teams that the Tide can be had.

Namely, Georgia is getting stronger by the minute, Penn State deserves much respect for holding off a valiant effort from visiting Auburn, Cincinnati has proven its worth with a terrific comeback win on the road against fired up Indiana and Iowa continues to impress.

They make up my top five in newly arranged order.

The next five?

Well, save for Texas A&M, which is finding its legs, all of them surprisingly struggled.

Oregon struggled against Stony Brook. Let that sink in for a minute.

Oklahoma fought off a feisty Nebraska as Spencer Rattler fails to impress.

Clemson? Where did you stow away the offense, Dabo Swinney? Georgia Tech?

Ohio State survived Tulsa. Now Tulsa is much better than most of the college football world thinks, but it’s still Tulsa.

Here’s other movement on my ballot.

I moved Florida up, not down. The Gators showed there’s little margin between them and the Tide. I put Dan Mullen’s bunch at No. 13.

I moved BYU way up. The Big 12 team-in-waiting Cougars did enough to knock off Arizona State a week after upsetting Utah. I’ve got them at No. 14.

Michigan State, too, is climbing the ladder about beating Miami. So is Michigan. The Wolverines are running over everybody, but we await until they play a real team.

Fresno State has been my dark sleeper all year. Its flirtation with an upset of Oregon opened some eyes, and its shocker over UCLA only confirms how good a team it really is. They sit at No. 19.

Maryland and West Virginia are two other newcomers on my ballot.

And, no, Texas doesn’t deserve to be ranked. It pummeled a really bad Rice team.

Here’s my entire Top 25.

1. Alabama

2. Georgia

3. Penn State

4. Cincinnati

5. Iowa

6. Oregon

7. Oklahoma

8. Clemson

9. Texas A&M

10. Ohio State

11. Notre Dame

12. Coastal Carolina

13. Florida

14. BYU

15. Kansas State

16. North Carolina

17. Michigan State

18. Michigan

19. Fresno State

20. Maryland

21. West Virginia

22. Virginia Tech

23. Stanford

24. Arkansas

25. USC