Texas A&M dominated South Carolina en route to their second-largest conference win since joining the SEC, and was rewarded with a rise in the rankings. They rose two spots to No. 5 in the AP Top 25, leapfrogging Cincinnati and benefitting from Georgia’s loss to Florida. The Aggies also jumped Cincy in the USA Today Coaches Poll, but were leapfrogged themselves by Florida (despite having a head-to-head victory and a much larger margin of victory against their lone common opponent, South Carolina).
This marks the first time that A&M has been ranked in the top five by the AP Top 25 since the final poll of the 2012 season (Johnny Manziel’s Heisman season). It’s also the first time that the Aggies have started SEC play 5-1 since joining the conference. They’re suddenly a popular Playoff darkhorse candidate, with a favorable schedule the rest of the way, even if an SEC Championship berth is unlikely.