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College Football: A Tally of Matchups between Two AP Top 5 Schools

Posted by Andrew McKillop on September 15, 2011

Post Highlights

  • For the 45th time this Saturday, Oklahoma will play in a matchup involving two schools in the AP top 5; the most by any school in college football.
  • Amongst schools that have played in five or more games featuring two AP top 5 ranked schools, Army has the best winning percentage (.833 W Pct).
  • When Notre Dame has had the better ranking, they have never lost to another school in the AP top 5 (13-0-2).

 

This Saturday college football will experience its 235th game featuring two teams ranked in the Associated Press top 5. When No. 5 Florida State plays host to No. 1 Oklahoma.  It will be the 45th time that Oklahoma has played in such a matchup.  By far the most by any school in college football (Ohio State follows with 32 games).  By the way Oklahoma is 3-0 in games vs. Florida State when there both in the AP top 5.

 

Records in AP Top 5 Showdowns

School W L T W Pct Last Game Score
Alabama 7 8 0.467 2009: n #2 Texas W 32-13
Arizona 0 1 0.000 1999: n #3 Penn St L 7-41
Arizona St 0 1 0.000 1996: n #4 Ohio St L 17-20
Arkansas 1 2 0.333 1970: at #1 Texas L 7-42
Army 7 1 1 0.833 1958: at #4 Notre Dame W 14-2
Auburn 3 3 1 0.500 2010: n #2 Oregon W 22-19
California 1 1 0.500 1949: n #5 Ohio St L 14-17
Cincinnati 0 1 0.000 2009: n #5 Florida L 24-51
Clemson 1 0 1.000 1981: n #4 Nebraska W 22-15
Colorado 2 4 0.333 2001: n #2 Oregon L 16-38
Duke 1 1 0.500 1943: n #4 Navy L 13-14
Florida 10 8 0.556 2009: n #4 Cincinnati W 13-3
Florida St 10 12 0.455 2004: at #5 Miami FL L 10-16
Fordham 0 0 1 0.500 1936: n #2 Pittsburgh T 0-0
Georgia 2 4 0.333 2003: n #3 LSU L 13-34
Georgia Tech 2 3 0.400 1956: vs #3 Tennessee W 9-7
Illinois 1 2 0.333 1964: vs #4 Ohio St L 0-26
Iowa 2 3 0.400 2002: n #5 USC L 17-38
Iowa Pre-Flight 0 1 0.000 1943: at #1 Notre Dame L 13-14
Kansas 0 2 0.000 2007: n #3 Missouri L 28-36
School W L T W Pct Last Game Score
Kentucky 1 0 1.000 1950: n #1 Oklahoma W 13-7
LSU 6 4 0.600 2011:  #3 Oregon W 40-27
Louisville 1 0 1.000 2006: vs #3 West Virginia W 44-34
Maryland 2 3 0.400 1978: at #2 Penn St L 3-27
Miami FL 12 6 0.667 2005: at #3 Virginia Tech W 27-7
Michigan 7 21 1 0.259 2006: at #1 Ohio St L 39-42
Michigan St 4 1 1 0.750 1966: at #1 Notre Dame T 10-10
Minnesota 4 3 0.571 1962: at #3 Wisconsin L 9-14
Mississippi 1 2 0.333 1961: n #4 Texas L 7-12
Missouri 1 1 0.500 2007: n #2 Kansas W 36-28
Navy 1 4 1 0.250 1963: n #1 Texas L 6-28
Nebraska 12 13 0.480 2001: n #1 Miami FL W 20-10
North Carolina 0 2 0.000 1997: vs #3 Florida St L 3-20
Northwestern 2 1 0.667 1959: at #5 Iowa W 14-10
Notre Dame 19 9 3 0.661 2005: n #4 Ohio St L 20-34
Ohio St 18 13 1 0.578 2008: at #1 USC L 3-35
Oklahoma 25 18 1 0.580 2008: n #1 Florida L 35-45
Oklahoma St 0 1 0.000 1984: at #2 Oklahoma L 14-24
Oregon 1 2 0.333 2011: n #4 LSU L 27-40
Penn St 6 8 1 0.433 1999: n #4 Arizona W 41-7
School W L T W Pct Last Game Score
Pennsylvania 0 1 0.000 1946: vs #1 Army L 7-34
Pittsburgh 2 2 1 0.500 1982: at #2 Penn St W 7-6
Purdue 1 3 0.250 1968: at #4 Ohio St W 37-22
Santa Clara 1 0 1.000 1936: n #2 LSU W 21-14
USC 18 6 0.750 2008: vs #5 Ohio St W 35-3
SMU 0 1 1 0.250 1956: vs #2 Georgia Tech L 7-9
Syracuse 2 0 1.000 1960: at #5 Kansas W 14-7
Tennessee 5 7 1 0.423 2001: at  #2 Florida W 34-32
Texas 14 14 1 0.500 2009: n #1 Alabama L 21-37
Texas A&M 2 2 0.500 1992: n #5 Notre Dame L 3-28
TCU 1 0 1.000 2010: n #4 Wisconsin W 21-19
Texas Tech 0 1 0.000 2008: at #5 Oklahoma L 21-65
Tulane 0 2 0.000 1949: at #1 Notre Dame L 7-46
UCLA 2 9 0.182 1988: vs #2 Nebraska W 41-28
Virginia Tech 0 3 0.000 2005: vs #5 Miami FL L 7-27
Washington 3 0 1.000 1991: n #4 Michigan W 34-14
West Virginia 0 2 0.000 2006: at #5 Louisville L 34-44
Wisconsin 2 3 0.400 2010: n #3 TCU L 19-21




Amongst schools that have played in five or more games featuring two AP top 5 ranked schools, Army has the best winning percentage (.833 W Pct).

Best Winning Percentage in AP Top 5 Showdowns

(Minimum of five games)

Rk School W L T W Pct
1 Army 7 1 1 0.833
2t USC 18 6 0.750
2t Michigan St 4 1 1 0.750
4 Miami FL 12 6 0.667
5 Notre Dame 19 9 3 0.661
6 LSU 6 4 0.600
7 Oklahoma 25 18 1 0.580
8 Ohio St 18 13 1 0.578
9 Minnesota 4 3 0.571
10 Florida 10 8 0.556

 

Amongst schools that have played in five or more games featuring two AP top 5 ranked schools, UCLA has the worst winning percentage (.182 W Pct).

Worst Winning Percentage in AP Top 5 Showdowns

(Minimum of five games)

Rk School W L T W Pct
1 UCLA 2 9 0.182
2 Navy 1 4 1 0.250
3 Michigan 7 21 1 0.259
4t Colorado 2 4 0.333
4t Georgia 2 4 0.333
6t Georgia Tech 2 3 0.400
6t Iowa 2 3 0.400
6t Maryland 2 3 0.400
6t Wisconsin 2 3 0.400
10t Penn St 6 8 1 0.433
10t Tennessee 5 7 1 0.423


No. 5 Florida State faces a tall order vs. No. 1 Oklahoma.  Schools ranked No. 5 have a losing record of 5-9 vs. schools ranked No. 1.  Check out the list below for more info.

Top 5 Ranking vs. Top 5 Ranking

No. 1 vs. Top 5
Matchup W L T W Pct
No. 1 vs. No. 2 26 17 2 0.600
No. 1 vs. No. 3 13 11 1 0.540
No. 1 vs. No. 4 14 7 1 0.659
No. 1 vs. No. 5 9 5 0.643
Totals 62 40 4 0.604
No. 2 vs. Top 5
Matchup W L T W Pct
No. 2 vs. No. 1 17 26 2 0.400
No. 2 vs. No. 3 12 8 1 0.595
No. 2 vs. No. 4 8 8 0.500
No. 2 vs. No. 5 13 10 1 0.563
Totals 50 52 4 0.491
No. 3 vs. Top 5
Matchup W L T W Pct
No. 3 vs. No. 1 11 13 1 0.460
No. 3 vs. No. 2 8 12 1 0.405
No. 3 vs. No. 4 11 8 0.579
No. 3 vs. No. 5 16 7 1 0.688
Totals 46 40 3 0.534
No. 4 vs. Top 5
Matchup W L T W Pct
No. 4 vs. No. 1 7 14 1 0.341
No. 4 vs. No. 2 8 8 0.500
No. 4 vs. No. 3 8 11 0.421
No. 4 vs. No. 4 1 1 0.500
No. 4 vs. No. 5 10 12 1 0.457
Totals 34 46 2 0.427
No. 5 vs. Top 5
Matchup W L T W Pct
No. 5 vs. No. 1 5 9 0.357
No. 5 vs. No. 2 10 13 1 0.438
No. 5 vs. No. 3 7 16 1 0.313
No. 5 vs. No. 4 12 10 1 0.543
Totals 34 48 3 0.418




Additional Facts

The 1999 season was the last time there were two different AP top 5 showdowns in the months of August and/or September in one season.

In 1944, No. 1 Army defeated No. 5 Notre Dame 59-0.  It’s the greatest margin of victory for any school in an AP top 5 showdown.

Going back to 1972, USC is 12-2 in AP top 5 showdowns.

 

When Notre Dame has had the better ranking, they have never lost to another AP top 5 school (13-0-2).

When UCLA has had the better ranking, they have never won against another AP top 5 school (0-5).

When Miami FL has been ranked in the AP top 5, they have had a penchant for defeating schools with the better ranking; with an 8-2 record in such games.

 

Reference: James Howell’s College Football Scores, College Football at Sports-Reference.com

 

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