For the first time in a little over a year, the Associated Press’ College Football Poll will not include the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.
It also looks as though the National Championship finalist from last year may not even get back on it. The Irish lost by 2 touchdowns yesterday against the Oklahoma Sooners as Irish quarterback Tommy Rees started the game with 2 interceptions.
The Irish falling out of the Top 25 made room for the Arizona State Sun Devils to move in. The Sun Devils beat USC on Saturday and that prompted the firing of USC head coach Lane Kiffin.
Alabama remained No. 1 as the top five held their spots for the third consecutive week. The Crimson Tide received 55 of 60 first-place votes, and No. 2 Oregon got the rest from the media panel, one more than last week. Clemson is third, followed by Ohio State and Stanford.
Georgia moved up to No. 6 after its 44-41 victory against LSU, which slipped four spots to 10th.
Notre Dame (3-2), coming off a loss in the Discover BCS National Championship, began the season No. 14 but is now out of the Top 25 after losing 35-21 at home to Oklahoma, which moved up three spots to 11th.
Interestingly enough, the Irish next play the Sun Devils, who now sit at 3-1. The game, scheduled for next Saturday, will be played at the re-named Dallas Cowboys Stadium, now called AT&T Stadium. It will also be considered a home game for the Irish.
PLAY LIKE A CHAMPION TODAY
It was a tough game for Notre Dame supporters to watch, we also learned that Notre Dame is not the only school in the nation to use the ‘Play Like a Champion’ slogan outside of their dressing room. NBC reporter Alex Flanagan said the Sooners use it to, and in fact they brought their ‘Play Like A Champion’ sign with them to South Bend yesterday. According to Flanagan, Oklahoma may have been the first of the 2 teams to adapt it. The Irish have had it since the Lou Holtz days.
The Irish loss was the first in 8 games against the Sooners. Oklahoma finally beat Notre Dame after a frustrating seven straight losses dating back to 1956, including one that snapped the Sooners’ NCAA-record, 47-game winning streak in 1957 and also cost the Sooners a shot at a third straight title opportunity.
Some Irish players were booed by fans when they ran off the field after the loss, rather than stand in front of the student section for the singing of the alma mater. Coach Brian Kelly said he changed that practice two years ago but some players either forgot or didn’t know because the Irish had won 10 straight at home.
“I just felt like in those situations after a loss there’s a lot of emotions. It’s important to get the team back in the locker room and get them under my guidance,” Kelly said.