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January 10, 2008
Bowl victors rise in power rankings
The coach who led LSU to the top of the college football world also finds himself atop the final Rivals.com College Football Power Rankings.
LSU's 38-24 victory over Ohio State in the BCS national championship game helped Les Miles replace Ohio State's Jim Tressel as the No. 1 head coach in the power rankings, which measure the nation's top players and coaches at each position.
The final edition of the power rankings featured a distinct Southern California flavor. A USC player and coach moved atop their respective positions after the Trojans' 49-17 victory over Illinois in the Rose Bowl.
Fred Davis caught seven passes for 87 yards and a touchdown in the Rose Bowl to take over the No. 1 spot in the tight end rankings. Davis replaced Wisconsin's Travis Beckum, who caught two passes for 22 yards in the Badgers' 21-17 Outback Bowl loss to Tennessee.
The Rose Bowl victory also helped Nick Holt move atop the defensive coordinator rankings. Southern California finished the season ranked second in the nation in total defense and scoring defense, third in sacks, fourth in run defense and sixth in pass efficiency defense.
Holt moved ahead of Ohio State's Jim Heacock, whose team finished the season ranked first in the nation in total defense and scoring defense even after the loss to LSU.
Players and coaches who remained atop the rankings in their respective positions included Florida quarterback Tim Tebow, Arkansas running back Darren McFadden, Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree, Michigan offensive lineman Jake Long, LSU defensive lineman Glenn Dorsey, Penn State linebacker Dan Connor, Arizona defensive back Antoine Cason, Arkansas kick returner Felix Jones and Missouri offensive coordinator Dave Christensen.
Because this final edition of the power rankings is meant to highlight the top individual performers from the 2007 season, the charts include players who have ended their college careers or coaches who have moved on to new positions. We will run a new edition of the power rankings next spring that only lists players and coaches who are eligible for the 2008 season.
Steve Megargee is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.