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UCLA football returns to college football rankings after victory over LSU

A 38-27 win over then-No. 16 LSU on Saturday and a 2-0 start to the season put UCLA football back in the AP Top 25 for the first time since Sept. 2017. (Antonio Martinez/Daily Bruin)

By Jon Christon

Sept. 7, 2021 11:31 a.m.

The Bruins are back in the polls.

UCLA football (2-0) returned to a number of college football rankings Tuesday for the first time since 2017, including the AP Top 25 and the USA TODAY Sports AFCA Coaches Poll. The Bruins come in ranked No. 16 in both polls after defeating Hawai’i and LSU – which was ranked No. 16 in the AP poll and No. 13 in the Coaches Poll but is now unranked – to open their season.

When asked about the possibility of being ranked for the first time in his UCLA tenure after the win over the Tigers, coach Chip Kelly said it was far from his mind.

“I don’t care – where you’re ranked in September, it really doesn’t matter,” Kelly said. “You don’t have to write down a ranking for these guys, they know they played really well (Saturday). They also know on Monday nobody cares, so whatever. It is what it is. It’s good to talk about for other people, but not for us.”

The last time the Bruins were ranked in the AP poll came in Sept. 2017, also after winning their first two games. UCLA placed No. 25 that week before being dropped from the ranking the following week after a loss to Memphis. 

After an up-and-down week for the conference, the Bruins are now the fifth ranked Pac-12 team, with No. 12 Oregon and No. 14 USC being the only teams ahead of them. No. 21 Utah and No. 23 Arizona State are the only other conference teams in the AP poll.

UCLA will have next week off before playing Fresno State on Sept. 18 at the Rose Bowl.

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Jon Christon | Sports editor
Christon is currently the Sports editor and a reporter on the men's basketball and football beats. He was previously an assistant Sports editor on the women's basketball, softball, men's tennis and women's tennis beats and a reporter on the women's basketball and softball beats.
Christon is currently the Sports editor and a reporter on the men's basketball and football beats. He was previously an assistant Sports editor on the women's basketball, softball, men's tennis and women's tennis beats and a reporter on the women's basketball and softball beats.
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