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Western Kentucky ranked 24th in final AP football poll

Herald-Leader Staff Report

Western Kentucky Coach Jeff Brohm held up the trophy after Western Kentucky defeated South Florida 45-35 in the Miami Beach Bowl game on Dec. 21, 2015, in Miami.
Western Kentucky Coach Jeff Brohm held up the trophy after Western Kentucky defeated South Florida 45-35 in the Miami Beach Bowl game on Dec. 21, 2015, in Miami. Associated Press

On the strength of its first-ever FBS conference championship and a bowl victory in Miami, Western Kentucky (12-2) was ranked 24th in the final Associated Press poll of the season, which was released early Tuesday morning following the national championship game.

The Hilltoppers appeared in the poll for the first time in the FBS era after defeating Southern Miss 45-28 in the Conference USA championship game. They carried that momentum to a 45-35 victory over South Florida in the Miami Beach Bowl.

In 2015, the Hilltoppers won 12 games for the first time since the 2002 national championship team, including 10 of 12 by double digits and seven of 12 by 21 points or more. The 12 wins are the fourth-most in college football this season behind only national championship game participants Clemson and Alabama, and Houston.

They were also the first team in Conference USA’s 20-year history to go undefeated through league play and win the conference championship game.

Coach Jeff Brohm’s team finished the year No. 9 in the nation total offense and No. 4 in passing offense, led by the nation’s passing leader in Brandon Doughty. Doughty, a two-time C-USA Most Valuable Player, led the FBS in passing yards (5,055), passing touchdowns (48) and completion percentage (71.9). He is just the third quarterback in the last 50 years to lead the nation in all three categories.

WKU last finished the season ranked in the AP poll in 1975 when then-head coach Jimmy Feix’s team went 11-2 and finished as the NCAA Division II national runner-up.

Associated Press poll

The Top 25 teams in The Associated Press college football poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, final records, total points based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote, and previous ranking:

Record

Pts

Pv

1. Alabama (61)

14-1

1,525

2

2. Clemson

14-1

1,464

1

3. Stanford

12-2

1,360

5

4. Ohio St.

12-1

1,342

7

5. Oklahoma

11-2

1,270

4

6. Michigan St.

12-2

1,227

3

7. TCU

11-2

1,098

11

8. Houston

13-1

1,050

14

9. Iowa

12-2

981

6

10. Mississippi

10-3

975

16

11. Notre Dame

10-3

953

8

12. Michigan

10-3

911

17

13. Baylor

10-3

820

18

14. Florida St.

10-3

630

9

15. North Carolina

11-3

563

10

16. LSU

9-3

546

22

17. Utah

10-3

499

20

18. Navy

11-2

465

21

19. Oregon

9-4

391

15

20. Oklahoma St.

10-3

372

13

21. Wisconsin

10-3

332

23

22. Tennessee

9-4

260

NR

23. Northwestern

10-3

203

12

24. Western Kentucky

12-2

128

25

25. Florida

10-4

126

19

Others receiving votes: Georgia 109, Washington St. 51, Mississippi St. 47, San Diego St. 44, Arkansas 28, Toledo 28, Southern Cal 10, Appalachian St. 7, Boise St. 4, Duke 3, Temple 2, BYU 1.

Coaches’ poll

The Amway Top 25 football coaches poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, final records, total points based on 25 points for first place through one point for 25th, and previous ranking:

Record

Pts

Pvs

1. Alabama (56)

14-1

1400

2

2. Clemson

14-1

1344

1

3. Stanford

12-2

1235

6

4. Ohio State

12-1

1231

5

5. Oklahoma

11-2

1172

3

6. Michigan State

12-2

1121

4

7. TCU

11-2

1020

10

8. Houston

13-1

928

16

9. Mississippi

10-3

919

15

10. Iowa

12-2

862

7

11. Michigan

10-3

812

17

12. Notre Dame

10-3

781

9

13. Baylor

10-3

763

19

14. Florida State

10-3

645

8

15. North Carolina

11-3

543

11

16. Utah

10-3

499

20

17. LSU

9-3

485

21

18. Navy

11-2

402

22

19. Oklahoma State

10-3

392

13

20. Oregon

9-4

356

14

21. Wisconsin

10-3

307

23

22. Northwestern

10-3

207

12

23. Tennessee

9-4

190

_

24. Georgia

10-3

173

25

25. Florida

10-4

141

18

Others receiving votes: Western Kentucky 73, San Diego State 55, Toledo 27, Washington State 23, Mississippi State 18, Temple 18, Marshall 15, Arkansas 11, Appalachian State 9, Boise State 8, Louisville 7, Duke 2, Memphis 2, Southern Cal 2, Georgia Southern 1, West Virginia 1.

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