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Phew, that was a lot of action. In the two weeks since our last rankings, there have been plenty of high-profile meetings, and there are more to come in the next few weeks. The biggest winner of the fall so far is Army. After returning from suspension, the Black Knights have picked up where they left off without missing a beat, and an upset of Kutztown sees them shoot up to No. 8.
Another military academy making a resurgence is Air Force. The Zoomies had a rough go of it last year, but they're slaughtering everyone in the West, which is usually one of the top four or five conferences in the country, and they've got a win over Navy under their belt.
Every fall and spring, there comes a time when we have to knock teams down who are inactive to make room for those winning. This fall, that time is now, which is why Arizona and Arizona State tumble out of the Top 25. Games against New Mexico and each other, with their best 7s players not involved, aren't enough to constitute sticking around. The Sun Devils and Wildcats will have plenty of opportunity to crawl back into the rankings when they get their 15s seasons going in earnest, or perhaps before then if some of the teams at the bottom of the list falter.
Oklahoma, Tennessee and Maryland have broken the Top 25 finally. All are undefeated in their respective leagues, and the Terps were within a score of Navy before the Midshipmen ran away with the game in the second half. This is one of those rare occasions where a really competitive loss is good enough to move a team up.
Davenport, which had struggled in losses to Penn State and Arkansas State earlier this fall, proved in a road upset of Lindenwood that it's a different team when stars Angus MacLellan and JP Eloff are available and healthy. Eloff, especially, is a transcendent player, and he had a cracker of a game against the Lions. Upon returning from the Americas Rugby Championship, MacLellan and his Panther scrum were tough for Lindenwood to handle. With the upset, DU moves up over Lindenwood, but sits behind the cluster of Rugby East teams.
The coming weeks will see Air Force travel to Army, Clemson and Maryland meet for the ACRL title, AIC clash with Kutztown, and Lindenwood play Life. Oh, and there should be some intriguing matches at the ACRC bowl weekend in Charlotte, N.C., too.
|9||9||Kutztown||Lost to Army|
|10||16||Air Force||Beat Wyoming|
|12||13||Penn State||Beat Wheeling Jesuit|
|14||8||Lindenwood||Lost to Davenport|
|19||21||Bowling Green||Beat Cincinnati|
|24||Unr.||South Carolina||Beat Vanderbilt|
|25||Unr.||Maryland||Lost to Navy|
|Michigan||Lost to Indiana|