1986 NCAA Division I-A football rankings

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Two human polls comprised the 1986 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I-A football rankings. Unlike most sports, college football's governing body, the NCAA, does not bestow a national championship, instead that title is bestowed by one or more different polling agencies. There are two main weekly polls that begin in the preseason—the AP Poll and the Coaches' Poll.

Legend[edit]

  Increase in ranking
  Decrease in ranking
  Not ranked previous week
  National champion
(#–#)
  Win–loss record
(Italics)
  Number of first place votes
т
Tied with team above or below also with this symbol

AP Poll[edit]

Preseason
Aug 24[1]
Week 1
Sep 9[2]
Week 2
Sep 16[3]
Week 3
Sep 23[4]
Week 4
Sep 30[5]
Week 5
Oct 7[6]
Week 6
Oct 14[7]
Week 7
Oct 21[8]
Week 8
Oct 28[9]
Week 9
Nov 4[10]
Week 10
Nov 11[11]
Week 11
Nov 18[12]
Week 12
Nov 25[13]
Week 13
Dec 2[14]
Week 14 (Final)
Jan 3[15]
1. Oklahoma (44) Oklahoma (1-0) (55) Oklahoma (1-0) (55) Oklahoma (2-0) (55) Miami (FL) (4-0) (56) Miami (FL) (5-0) (55) Miami (FL) (6-0) (56) Miami (FL) (7-0) (55) Miami (FL) (7-0) (55) Miami (FL) (8-0) (53) Miami (FL) (9-0) (57) Miami (FL) (10-0) (56) Miami (FL) (10-0) (54) Miami (FL) (11-0) (53) Penn State (12-0) (54) 1.
2. Michigan (6) Miami (FL) (2-0) (1) Miami (FL) (2-0) (1) Miami (FL) (3-0) (1) Alabama (4-0) (1) Alabama (5-0) (2) Alabama (6-0) (2) Alabama (7-0) (3) Penn State (7-0) (4) Penn State (8-0) (4) Michigan (9-0) (1) Penn State (10-0) (3) Penn State (11-0) (4) Penn State (11-0) (5) Miami (FL) (11-1) 2.
3. Miami (FL) (1) Michigan (0-0) (1) Michigan (1-0) Alabama (4-0) Nebraska (3-0) Nebraska (4-0) Nebraska (5-0) Nebraska (6-0) Michigan (7-0) (1) Michigan (8-0) (1) Penn State (9-0) (1) Oklahoma (9-1) Oklahoma (10-1) Oklahoma (10-1) Oklahoma (11-1) (3) 3.
4. UCLA (3) Alabama (2-0) Alabama (3-0) (1) Nebraska (2-0) (1) Michigan (3-0) Michigan (4-0) Michigan (5-0) Michigan (6-0) Oklahoma (6-1) Oklahoma (7-1) Oklahoma (8-1) Arizona State (9-0-1) (1) Michigan (10-1) Michigan (10-1) Arizona State (10-1-1) 4.
5. Alabama Penn State (1-0) (1) Penn State (1-0) (1) Michigan (2-0) Penn State (3-0) (1) Penn State (4-0) (1) Oklahoma (4-1) Oklahoma (5-1) Auburn (7-0) Arizona State (7-0-1) Arizona State (8-0-1) (1) Nebraska (9-1) LSU (8-2) LSU (9-2) Nebraska (10-2) 5.
6. Penn State (3) Nebraska (1-0) (1) Nebraska (1-0) (1) Washington (2-0) (1) Oklahoma (2-1) Oklahoma (3-1) Penn State (5-0) (1) Penn State (6-0) (1) Washington (6-1) Alabama (8-1) (1) Nebraska (8-1) (1) Michigan (9-1) Nebraska (9-2) Nebraska (9-2) Auburn (10-2) 6.
7. Texas A&M (1) Texas A&M (0-0) Washington (1-0) (1) Penn State (2-0) (1) Auburn (3-0) Auburn (4-0) Auburn (5-0) Auburn (6-0) Arizona State (6-0-1) Nebraska (7-1) Texas A&M (7-1) Ohio State (9-2) Alabama (9-2) Arizona State (9-1-1) Ohio State (10-3) 7.
8. Nebraska (1) Tennessee (1-0) LSU (1-0) Auburn (2-0) Arkansas (3-0) Arkansas (4-0) Iowa (5-0) Washington (5-1) Alabama (7-1) Texas A&M (7-1) Auburn (8-1) LSU (7-2) Arizona State (9-1-1) Texas A&M (9-2) Michigan (11-2) 8.
9. Ohio State Auburn (1-0) Baylor (2-0) Arkansas (2-0) USC (3-0) USC (4-0) Washington (4-1) Arizona State (5-0-1) Nebraska (6-1) Auburn (7-1) Ohio State (8-2) Alabama (9-2) Arkansas (9-2) Arkansas (9-2) Alabama (10-3) 9.
10. Tennessee Ohio State (0-1) Auburn (1-0) Arizona (3-0) Arizona (4-0) Iowa (4-0) Arizona State (4-0-1) Texas A&M (5-1) Texas A&M (6-1) Arkansas (7-1) Washington (7-2) USC (7-2) Texas A&M (8-2) Auburn (9-2) LSU (9-3) 10.
11. Florida State BYU (1-0) BYU (2-0) Arizona State (2-0) Iowa (3-0) Arizona (4-0) Texas A&M (4-1) Iowa (5-1) Iowa (6-1) Ohio State (7-2) Alabama (8-2) Arkansas (8-2) Ohio State (9-3) Ohio State (9-3) Arizona (9-3) 11.
12. Baylor Baylor (1-0) Arkansas (1-0) USC (2-0) Washington (2-1) Washington (3-1) LSU (3-1) LSU (4-1) LSU (5-1) UCLA (6-2) LSU (6-2) Washington (7-2-1) Arizona (8-2) Washington (8-2-1) Baylor (9-3) 12.
13. Florida Florida (1-1) Florida (1-1) Maryland(3-0) Baylor (3-1) Baylor (4-1) Mississippi State (5-1) Mississippi State (6-1) Arkansas (6-1) Washington (6-2) USC (6-2) Texas A&M (7-2) Washington (8-2-1) Alabama (9-3) Texas A&M (9-3) 13.
14. Auburn LSU (0-0) Georgia (1-0) Texas A&M (1-1) Texas A&M (2-1) Texas A&M (3-1) Arkansas (4-1) Arkansas (5-1) Arizona (6-1) USC (6-2) Arizona (7-2) Arizona (7-2) Auburn (8-2) Baylor (8-3) UCLA (8-3-1) 14.
15. LSU Florida State (1-1) Florida State (1-1) Iowa (2-0) UCLA (2-1) Arizona State (3-0-1) USC (4-1) Arizona (5-1) UCLA (5-2) NC State (6-1-1) Clemson (7-2) Auburn (8-2) UCLA (7-3-1) UCLA (7-3-1) Arkansas (9-3) 15.
16. Georgia т UCLA (0-1) Texas A&M (0-1) UCLA (1-1) Arizona State (2-0-1) LSU (2-1) Arizona (4-1) Clemson (5-1) NC State (5-1-1) Iowa (6-2) Stanford (7-2) Stanford (7-2) Baylor (8-3) Arizona (8-3) Iowa (9-3) 16.
17. Washington т Washington (0-0) Arizona (2-0) Baylor (2-1) Michigan State (2-1) NC State (3-0-1) Clemson (4-1) UCLA (4-2) Ohio State (6-2) Arizona (6-2) Arkansas (7-2) Baylor (7-3) USC (7-3) Georgia (8-3) Clemson (8-2-2) 17.
18. BYU Arkansas (0-0) Arizona State (1-0) LSU (1-1) LSU (1-1) Stanford (4-0) North Carolina (4-0-1) SMU (5-1) USC (5-2) LSU (5-2) Baylor (6-3) UCLA (6-3-1) Georgia (7-3) NC State (8-2-1) Washington (8-3-1) 18.
19. Arkansas Georgia (0-0) UCLA (0-1) Michigan State (1-1) Fresno State (3-0) Mississippi State (4-1) UCLA (3-2) Stanford (5-1) Mississippi State (6-2) Georgia (6-2) UCLA (6-3) Clemson (7-2-1) NC State (8-2-1) Iowa (8-3) Boston College (9-3) 19.
20. Michigan State Michigan State (0-0) Notre Dame (0-1) Florida State (1-1-1) NC State (3-0-1) Clemson (3-1)
  • Baylor (4-2) т
  • SMU (4-1) т
NC State (4-1-1) Florida State (4-2-1) Clemson (6-2) Ole Miss (6-2-1) Georgia (7-3) Iowa (8-3) Stanford (8-3) Virginia Tech (9-2-1) 20.
Preseason
Aug 24[1]
Week 1
Sep 9[2]
Week 2
Sep 16[3]
Week 3
Sep 23[4]
Week 4
Sep 30[5]
Week 5
Oct 7[6]
Week 6
Oct 14[7]
Week 7
Oct 21[8]
Week 8
Oct 28[9]
Week 9
Nov 4[10]
Week 10
Nov 11[11]
Week 11
Nov 18[12]
Week 12
Nov 25[13]
Week 13
Dec 2[14]
Week 14 (Final)
Jan 3[15]
None Dropped:
  • Michigan State
  • Ohio State
  • Tennessee
Dropped:
  • BYU
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Notre Dame
Dropped:
  • Maryland
  • Florida State
Dropped:
  • Fresno State
  • Michigan State
  • UCLA
Dropped:
  • NC State
  • Stanford
Dropped:
  • Baylor
  • North Carolina
  • USC
Dropped:
  • Clemson
  • SMU
  • Stanford
Dropped:
  • Florida State
  • Mississippi State
Dropped:
  • Georgia
  • Iowa
  • NC State
Dropped:
  • Ole Miss
Dropped:
  • Clemson
  • Stanford
Dropped:
  • USC
Dropped:
  • Georgia
  • NC State
  • Stanford

Coaches' Poll[edit]

Preseason
Aug 19[16]
Week 1
Sep 9[17]
Week 2
Sep 16[18]
Week 3
Sep 23[19]
Week 4
Sep 30[20]
Week 5
Oct 7[21]
Week 6
Oct 14[22]
Week 7
Oct 21[23]
Week 8
Oct 28[24]
Week 9
Nov 4[25]
Week 10
Nov 11
Week 11
Nov 18[26]
Week 12
Nov 25[27]
Week 13
Dec 2[28]
Week 14 (Final)
Jan 3[29]
1. Oklahoma (36) Oklahoma (1-0) (44) Oklahoma (1-0) (43) Oklahoma (2-0) (44) Miami (FL) (4-0) (44) Miami (FL) (5-0) (47) Miami (FL) (6-0) (47) Miami (FL) (7-0) (47) Miami (FL) (7-0) (47) Miami (FL) (8-0) (48) Miami (FL) (9-0) (47) Miami (FL) (10-0) (47) Miami (FL) (10-0) (44) Miami (FL) (11-0) (41) Penn State (12-0) (50) 1.
2. Michigan (1) Miami (FL) (2-0) (1) Miami (FL) (3-0) (3) Miami (FL) (3-0) (3) Alabama (1) Alabama (5-0) Alabama (6-0) (3) Alabama (7-0) (3) Michigan (7-0) (1) Penn State (8-0) (1) Michigan (9-0) (1) Penn State (10-0) (2) Penn State (11-0) (5) Penn State (11-0) (5) Miami (FL) (11-1) 2.
3. Texas A&M (5) Michigan (0-0) (1) Michigan (1-0) (1) Alabama (4-0) (1) Nebraska (3-0) Michigan (4-0) Nebraska (5-0) Nebraska (6-0) Penn State (7-0) (2) Michigan (8-0) (1) Penn State (9-0) (2) Oklahoma (9-1) Oklahoma (10-1) Oklahoma (10-1) Oklahoma (11-1) 3.
4. UCLA (2) Alabama (2-0) (1) Alabama (3-0) Michigan (2-0) (1) Michigan (3-0) Penn State (4-0) Michigan (5-0) Michigan (6-0) Oklahoma (6-1) Oklahoma (7-1) Oklahoma (8-1) Arizona State (9-0-1) Michigan (10-1) Michigan (10-1) Nebraska (10-2) 4.
5. Penn State (2) Penn State (1-0) (2) Nebraska (1-0) Nebraska (2-0) Penn State (3-0) (1) Nebraska (4-0) Penn State (5-0) Penn State (6-0) Auburn (7-0) Arizona State (7-0-1) Arizona State (8-0-1) Nebraska (9-1) Nebraska (9-2) Nebraska (9-2) Arizona State (10-1-1) 5.
6. Alabama (1) Nebraska (1-0) Penn State (1-0) (2) Penn State (2-0) (2) Oklahoma (2-1) Oklahoma (3-1) Oklahoma (4-1) Oklahoma (5-1) Washington (6-1) Alabama (8-1) Nebraska (8-1) Michigan (9-1) LSU (8-2) LSU (9-2) Ohio State (10-3) 6.
7. Miami (FL) (3) Texas A&M (0-0) Washington (1-0) Washington (2-0) Auburn (3-0) Auburn (4-0) Auburn (5-0) Auburn (6-0) Arizona State (6-0-1) Nebraska (7-1) Texas A&M (8-1) Ohio State (9-2) Alabama (9-2) Texas A&M (9-2) Michigan (11-2) 7.
8. Nebraska Tennessee (1-0) LSU (1-0) Auburn (2-0) USC (3-0) USC (4-0) Iowa (5-0) Washington (5-1) Alabama (7-1) Texas A&M (7-1) Auburn (8-1) LSU (7-2) Arizona State (9-1-1) Arizona State (9-1-1) Auburn (10-2) 8.
9. Ohio State BYU (1-0) Baylor (2-0) Arkansas (2-0) Arkansas (3-0) Arizona (4-0) Washington (4-1) Arizona State (5-0-1) Nebraska (6-1) Arkansas (7-1) Ohio State (8-2) Alabama (9-2) Texas A&M (8-2) Auburn (9-2) Alabama (10-3) 9.
10. Tennessee Baylor (1-0) Georgia (1-0) Arizona (3-0) Arizona (4-0) Arkansas (4-0) Arizona State (4-0-1) Texas A&M (5-1) Texas A&M (6-1) Auburn (7-1) Washington (7-2) USC (7-2) Arkansas (9-2) Arkansas (9-2) Arizona (9-3) 10.
11. Florida State Auburn (1-0) Auburn (1-0) Arizona State (2-0) Iowa (3-0) Iowa (4-0) Texas A&M (4-1) LSU (4-1) LSU (5-1) Ohio State (7-2) LSU (6-2) Texas A&M (8-2) Arizona (8-2) Washington (8-2-1) LSU (9-3) 11.
12. Baylor Ohio State (0-1) Arkansas (1-0) USC (2-0) Baylor (3-1) Washington (3-1) LSU (3-1) Iowa (5-1) Iowa (6-1) UCLA (6-2) USC (7-2) Washington (7-2-1) Washington (8-2-1) Ohio State (9-3) Texas A&M (9-3) 12.
13. Auburn Washington (0-0) BYU (2-0) Iowa (2-0) Washington (2-1) Arizona State (3-0-1) Arkansas (4-1) Arkansas (5-1) Arkansas (6-1) Washington (6-2) Arizona (7-2) Arkansas (8-2) Ohio State (9-3) Arizona (8-3) Baylor (9-3) 13.
14. Arkansas Georgia (0-0) Iowa (1-0) Maryland (3-0) Arizona State (2-0-1) Baylor (4-1) Arizona (4-1) Mississippi State (6-1) Arizona (6-1) NC State (6-1-1) Stanford (7-2) Auburn (8-2) Auburn (8-2) Alabama (9-3) UCLA (8-3-1) 14.
15. Georgia Arkansas (0-0) Arizona (2-0) UCLA (1-1) Texas A&M (2-1) Texas A&M (3-1) Mississippi State (5-1) Arizona (5-1) UCLA (5-2) USC (6-2) Alabama (8-2) Arizona (7-2) Baylor (8-3) UCLA (7-3-1) Iowa (9-3) 15.
16. BYU т Arizona (1-0) Maryland (2-0) Texas A&M (1-1) Michigan State (2-1) Clemson (3-1) USC (4-1) Clemson (5-1) NC State (5-1-1) Iowa (6-2) Arkansas (7-2) Stanford (7-2) UCLA (7-3-1) Baylor (8-3) Arkansas (9-3) 16.
17. Washington т LSU (0-0) Arizona State (1-0) Baylor (2-1) UCLA (2-1) Georgia (3-1) Clemson (4-1) UCLA (4-2) т Ohio State (6-2) Arizona (6-2) Clemson (7-2) Baylor (7-3) USC (7-3) Stanford (8-3) Washington (8-3-1) 17.
18. Iowa Maryland (1-0) Florida State (1-1) Michigan State (1-1) Fresno State (3-0) NC State (3-0-1) North Carolina (4-0-1) Stanford (5-1) т Baylor (5-3) LSU (5-2) Baylor (6-3) Clemson (7-2-1) Clemson (7-2-2) Clemson (7-2-2) Boston College (9-3) 18.
19. LSU UCLA (0-1) Texas A&M (0-1) Fresno State (2-0) NC State (3-0-1) Indiana (4-0) UCLA (3-2) NC State (4-1-1) USC (5-2) Baylor (5-3) UCLA (6-3) NC State (7-2-1) NC State (8-2-1) т San Jose State (9-2) Clemson (8-2-2) 19.
20. Maryland Iowa (0-0) USC (1-0) Florida State (1-1-1) Stanford (3-0) North Carolina (3-0-1) Baylor (4-2) Baylor (4-3) т
North Carolina (4-1-1) т
Florida State (4-2-1) Stanford (6-2) NC State (6-2-1) San Jose State (9-2)
Georgia (7-3)
Florida State (6-3-1) т
San Jose State (9-2) т
Virginia Tech (8-2-1) Florida State (7-4-1) 20.
Preseason
Aug 19[16]
Week 1
Sep 9[17]
Week 2
Sep 16[18]
Week 3
Sep 23[19]
Week 4
Sep 30[20]
Week 5
Oct 7[21]
Week 6
Oct 14[22]
Week 7
Oct 21[23]
Week 8
Oct 28[24]
Week 9
Nov 4[25]
Week 10
Nov 11
Week 11
Nov 18[26]
Week 12
Nov 25[27]
Week 13
Dec 2[28]
Week 14 (Final)
Jan 3[29]
Dropped:
  • Florida State
Dropped:
  • UCLA
Dropped:
  • LSU
  • Georgia
  • BYU
Dropped:
  • Maryland
  • Florida State
Dropped:
  • Michigan State
  • UCLA
  • Fresno State
  • Stanford
Dropped:
  • Georgia
  • NC State
  • Indiana
Dropped:
  • USC
Dropped:
  • Mississippi State
  • Clemson
  • Stanford
  • North Carolina
Dropped:
  • Florida State
Dropped:
  • Iowa
Dropped:
  • UCLA
Dropped:
  • Stanford
  • Georgia
Dropped:
  • USC
  • NC State
  • Florida State
Dropped:
  • Stanford
  • San Jose State
  • Virginia Tech

References[edit]

  1. ^ "No. 1 College Ranking Goes to Oklahoma". Albuquerque Journal. August 24, 1986. Retrieved December 18, 2016. 
  2. ^ "September 9, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  3. ^ "September 16, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  4. ^ "September 23, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  5. ^ "September 30, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  6. ^ "October 7, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  7. ^ "October 14, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  8. ^ "October 28, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  9. ^ "October 28, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  10. ^ "November 4, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  11. ^ "November 11, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  12. ^ "November 18, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  13. ^ "November 25, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  14. ^ "December 2, 1986 AP Football Poll". College Poll Archive. Retrieved March 2, 2017. 
  15. ^ "Final AP Top 20". The Oklahoman. January 4, 1987. Retrieved December 18, 2016. 
  16. ^ "Coaches Think Oklahoma Is Top College Football Team". Logansport Pharos-Tribune. August 19, 1986. Retrieved December 18, 2016. 
  17. ^ "The United Press International Board of Coaches Top 20 college football ratings". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. September 23, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  18. ^ "Washington, LSU Climb Ratings". The Daily News (Huntingdon, PA). September 16, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  19. ^ "UPI Poll". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. September 23, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  20. ^ "The United Press International Board of Coaches Top 20 college football ratings". The Republic (Columbus, IN). September 30, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  21. ^ "Tide Rolls Closer to Miami in UPI Poll". Tyrone Daily Herald. October 7, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  22. ^ "Two killer losses to Iowa still sting Schembechler". Detroit Free Press. October 14, 1986. Retrieved October 16, 2017. 
  23. ^ "Penn State Still Fifth". The Daily News (Huntingdon, PA). October 21, 1986. Retrieved December 18, 2016. 
  24. ^ "'Canes, Wolverines, Lions Ranked 1-2-3 in UPI Poll". Tyrone Daily Herald. October 28, 1986. Retrieved October 17, 2017. 
  25. ^ "Lions Vault Past Michigan Into UPl's No. 2 Rating Slot". Tyrone Daily Herald. November 4, 1986. Retrieved October 17, 2017. 
  26. ^ "Lions Move To 2nd As Expected; Showdown With Miami Closer". Tyrone Daily Herald. November 18, 1986. Retrieved October 17, 2017. 
  27. ^ "Miami, Penn State, Okla., Michigan Head UPI Rankings". Tyrone Daily Herald. November 25, 1986. Retrieved October 17, 2017. 
  28. ^ "The United Press International Board of Coaches Top 20 college football ratings". Detroit Free-Press. December 3, 1986. Retrieved October 17, 2017. 
  29. ^ "Penn State Voted National Champion". Logansport Pharos-Tribune. January 4, 1987. Retrieved December 18, 2016.