Best of the West: BYU holds off Oregon for No. 1, CU Buffs debut at No. 9

BYU is holding off Oregon for No. 1 — for now. And Karl Dorrell opens 2020 with his CU Buffs firmly in the Top 10.

With the return of FBS football along the Front Range and the West Coast this past weekend (with some coronavirus-related exceptions), The Denver Post is debuting its Best of the West College Football Top 25 poll for 2020.

The Cougars’ massive and unbeaten head start (8-0) on their western peers and an impressive 51-17 drubbing of Boise State last week earned them two of three first-place votes. The Ducks, 35-14 winners at home against Stanford in their 2020 debut, got the other.

CU held on for a 48-42 win vs UCLA in the season opener for both this past Saturday at Folsom Field in the initial tilt for Dorrell, the new Buffs coach who was hired to replace Mel Tucker in late February. CU debuted at No. 9 on Monday; the Buffs ranked 15th in the final 2019 Best of the West Poll.

CSU is also coming off a strong home opener, knocking off rival Wyoming this past Thursday, 34-24, in the Rams’ first Border War victory since 2015. CSU debuted at No. 17 Monday; the Rams ranked 21st in the final 2019 Best of the West poll.

The Denver Post Best of the West College Football poll 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:

THE DENVER POST BEST OF THE WEST TOP 25 POLL — NOV. 9

1. BYU (8-0) (2 first-place votes) — Previous: —  // Up next: BYE

2. Oregon (1-0) (1 first-place vote) — Previous: —  // Up next: at WAZZU

3. USC (1-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: at ARIZ

4. Arizona State (0-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. CAL

5. Washington State (1-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. ORE

6. San Jose State (3-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. UNLV

7. Nevada (3-0) — Previous: —  // Up next vs. NM

8. Boise State (2-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. CSU, Thu.

9. CU (1-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: at STAN

10. Utah (0-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: at UCLA

11. San Diego State (2-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. HAW

12. Washington (0-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. OREST

13. California (0-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: at ASU

14. Hawaii (2-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: at SDSU

15. Fresno State (2-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: at USU

16. Oregon State (0-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: at WASH

17. CSU (1-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: at BOISE, Thu.

18. Stanford (0-1) — Previous: — // Up next: vs. CU

19. Air Force (1-2) — Previous: —  // Up next: WYO GAME CANCELED

20. UCLA (0-1) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. UTAH

21. Wyoming (1-2) — Previous: —  // Up next: AFA GAME CANCELED

22. Arizona (0-0) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. USC

23. New Mexico (0-2) — Previous: —  // Up next: vs. NEV

24. UNLV (0-3) — Previous: —  // Up next: at SJS

25. Utah State (0-3) // Last Week: —  // Up next: vs. FRES

The next Best of the West poll will post Monday, Nov. 16.

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