Best of the West College Football Top 25: Can CU Buffs, CSU Rams pull off something they haven’t done for nearly 780 days?

Where were you on Sept. 7, 2019?

Back to that date in a second.

Let’s be frank: Outside of Golden, Laramie and the Academy, it’s been a patchy first seven weeks to the college football season along the Front Range. While the new Ralphie can run with the best of them, the new Buffs have stumbled. Rams faithful who expected a 2-0 start at home were greeted by feisty Jackrabbits and a cold shower.

But hope is on the way, kids. Before we present the latest installment of The Denver Post’s Best of the West College Football Top 25 here at, a friendly public service announcement:

Front Range college football fans actually have something to look forward to Saturday. Well, besides basketball season.

CU (1-4) is favored at home by 7.5 points, according to, for a visit against 0-5 Arizona. CSU (2-3) is a 10-point favorite, the same sports book says, heading into its visit to 2-4 New Mexico a few hours later.

What’s the significance? If form holds — and neither the ‘Cats and Lobos are great shakes — we could be staring at something we haven’t seen around here in more than two years: The Buffs and Rams winning a football game on the same day.

The last time that happened? Sept. 7, 2019.

It’s been that stinking long. Blame TV schedules. (CSU last fall beat Wyoming in a Thursday night game on Nov. 5; CU opened the season with a win over UCLA two days later.) Blame the pandemic. Blame the 2019 football season in general. Blame Mike Bobo. Blame Mel Tucker.

Remember Mel? In Week 2 of the ’19 campaign, his Buffs rallied for a thrilling 34-31 home overtime win over Nebraska. At roughly the same time, CSU was knocking the stuffing out of Western Illinois, 38-13, at Canvas Stadium.

As of Monday morning, it had been 765 days since both drank from the sweet cup of victory on the same afternoon. Time to put that little streak to bed, don’t you think? No pressure, Buffs and Rams. No. Pressure.

As to the business at hand, Oregon (4-1) is your new (old?) No. 1 in The Denver Post Best of the West College Football poll, which each Monday ranks the top 25 FBS programs from the Front Range to the Pacific Ocean, as culled from the Pac-12, the Mountain West and BYU. Post columnist Sean Keeler (@SeanKeeler), Post deputy sports editor Matt Schubert (@MattDSchubert) and Post reporter Kyle Fredrickson (@KyleFredrickson) vote on the top 25.

The rest of the latest rankings follow, with in-state squads listed in bold:


SchoolPreviousUp next
1. Oregon (4-1) *(2)2vs. California, Fri.
2. Arizona State (5-1) *(1)3at Utah
3. BYU (5-1)1at Baylor
4. San Diego State (5-0)5at San Jose State, Fri.
▲5. Utah (3-2)13vs. Arizona State
6. Nevada (4-1)7vs. Hawaii
7. UCLA (4-2)8at Washington
8. Air Force (5-1) 9at Boise State
9. Boise State (3-3)
15vs. Air Force
10. Stanford (3-3)6at Washington State
▼11. Oregon State (4-2)4BYE
12. Fresno State (4-2)12at Wyoming
13. Utah State (3-2)14at UNLV
14. Wyoming (4-1)10vs. Fresno State
15. USC (3-3)11BYE
16. Hawaii (3-3)16at Nevada
17. Washington (2-3)18vs. UCLA
18. Washington State (3-3)19vs. Stanford
19. CSU (2-3)20at New Mexico
20. California (1-4)
21at Oregon, Fri.
21. San Jose State (3-3)17vs. San Diego State, Fri.
22. New Mexico (2-4)
23vs. Colorado State
23. Colorado (1-4)22vs. Arizona
24. Arizona (0-5)24at Colorado
25. UNLV (0-5)25vs. Utah State

*First-place votes in parenthesis

▲= Biggest climb of the week
▼= Biggest drop of the week
The next Best of the West poll will post Monday, Oct. 18.

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