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College Football Power Rankings: North Carolina, Texas A&M rocket upwards after top 25 wins

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If you didn’t believe it before, you’d better believe it now: Defense is all but extinct. It certainly seemed that way on a weekend where 31 of the 58 teams playing scored at least 30 points.

That shouldn’t be surprising because the average FBS team is scoring 30.3 points per game in 00. If that holds up, it would be a record.

Adding to the fun …

  • Ole Miss and Alabama combined for the most yards ever in a regulation SEC game.
  • Texas and Oklahoma played in the highest-scoring Red River Showdown, which went to four overtimes.
  • Texas A&M beat a top five team (Florida) for the first time since 2002. The Aggies needed 41 points to do it.

What that means for this week’s biggest game is fascinating. Alabama just rolled up its most yards ever on Ole Miss. It now hosts Georgia, which is No. 2 nationally in total defense. I’m sensing something similar to nuclear fission where everything around that clash is reduced to ash, especially if Nick Saban needs his offense to run up 743 yards to win.

“I’m not really calm,” Saban said after surviving Ole Miss, 63-48. “I’m boiling and bubbling, trying to be encouraging to the players.”

First, he has to settle down himself if recent history repeats. The Crimson Tide have given up at least 42 points three times in the last eight games. Before that, Alabama gave up 42 points three times in the prior 65 games.

Editor’s note: Teams from the five conferences not yet playing in the 2020 college football season will be eligible for the Power Rankings beginning Monday, Oct. 19.

Biggest Movers

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Clemson

The trees wasted on newsprint chronicling whether Clemson will finally be challenged in the ACC could

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Biggest North Pole mission back from ‘dying Arctic’

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Researchers on the world’s biggest mission to the North Pole returned to Germany on Monday, bringing home devastating proof of a dying Arctic Ocean and warnings of ice-free summers in just decades.

The German Alfred Wegener Institute’s Polarstern ship returned to the port of Bremerhaven after 389 days spent drifting through the Arctic trapped in ice, allowing scientists to gather vital information on the effects of global warming in the region.

“I have waited for this moment for so long that my heart is palpitating. The ship is now back,” said institute director Antje Boetius from on board another ship accompanying the research vessel back to port.

Ahead of their return, mission leader Markus Rex told AFP that the team of several hundred scientists from 20 countries have seen for themselves the dramatic effects of global warming on ice in the region considered “the epicentre of climate change.

“We witnessed how the Arctic ocean is dying,” Rex said. “We saw this process right outside our windows, or when we walked on the brittle ice.”

Underlining how much of the sea ice has melted away, Rex said the mission was able to sail through large patches of open water, “sometimes stretching as far as the horizon”.

“At the North Pole itself, we found badly eroded, melted, thin and brittle ice.”

– ‘Ice-free Arctic’ –

If the warming trend in the North Pole continues, then in a few decades we will have “an ice-free Arctic in the summer”, Rex said.

The researchers’ observations have been backed up by US satellite images showing that in 2020, sea ice in the Arctic reached its second-lowest summer minimum on record, after 2012.

The Polarstern mission, dubbed MOSAIC, spent over a year collecting data on the atmosphere, ocean, sea ice and ecosystems to help assess the

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3,500-pound great white shark dubbed “Queen of the Ocean” spotted off North America’s coast

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A 3,500 pound great white shark dubbed Nukumi — meaning “Queen of the Ocean” — has been spotted off the coast of Nova Scotia. The massive 50-year-old shark was tagged and released by Ocearch, a research and exploring team that hopes its latest trip out to sea provides new clues to unravel the mysteries of great whites.

“When you see these big females like that that have scars from decades over their lives and multiple mating cycles, you can really kinda see the story of their life unfolding across all the blotches and healed wounds on their body,” team leader Chris Fischer told CBS News’ Jeff Glor. “It really hits you differently thank you would think.”   

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A 50-year-old, 3,500-pound shark nicknamed Nukumi, meaning “Queen of the Ocean.”

CBS News/Ocearch


Tagging Nukumi, one of the largest great white sharks ever seen, was the crowning achievement of Ocearch’s month-long trip off the North American coast that had them running from storms for 21 days in the middle of an unprecedented Atlantic hurricane season. 

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Tagging Nukumi, one of the largest great white sharks ever seen, was the crowning achievement of Ocearch’s month-long trip.

CBS News / Ocearch


At the end, Ocearch was successfully able to sample and release a total of eight great white sharks, including the so-called “Queen of the Ocean.” 

Fischer explained that tracking Nukumi comes with a “great opportunity” to show the researchers “where the Atlantic Canada white shark gives birth” — something that has never been witnessed before. 

Along with gathering more information on their birth, Ocearch’s goal is to learn more about the apex predators that keep the ocean in balance

“If they thrive, the system thrives,” Fischer explained. “The white shark is the balance keeper, and the path to abundance goes through them.”

Without white

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College football scores, NCAA top 25 rankings, schedule, games today: LSU, North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech on

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Five of the seven top-10 teams in action on Saturday will be battling ranked foes as the college football season rolls on with some crucial conference matchups dotting the Week 6 slate. In total, 16 of the 19 ranked teams who have started their seasons will be in action during what figures to be another hectic day in the sport. The headliners are No. 1 Miami hosting No. 7 Clemson in the evening and No. 3 Georgia hosting No. 14 Tennessee for the SEC on CBS Game of the Week in the afternoon. 

But the morning wave of games is loaded, too. No. 4 Florida plays at No. 21 Texas A&M in a critical game for a pair of third-year coaches looking to make a mark on the national scene. The ACC will also have a pair of ranked teams dueling in the early time slot as No. 8 North Carolina hosts No. 19 Virginia Tech in the toughest test yet for both teams.

There’s a lot to cover with those games and everything in between. CBS Sports will be here every step of the way to update you with the latest scores, highlights and storylines throughout the day. All times Eastern

College football scores, schedule — Week 6

Oklahoma vs. No. 22 Texas — Noon on FOX — Preview, predictions
No. 4 Florida at No. 21 Texas A&M — Noon on ESPN — Preview, predictions
No. 19 Virginia Tech at No. 8 North Carolina — Noon on ABC
No. 17 LSU at Missouri — Noon on SEC Network
No. 14 Tennessee at No. 3 Georgia — 3:30 p.m. on CBS — Preview, predictions
Arkansas at No. 13 Auburn — 4 p.m. on SEC Network
Alabama at No. 2 Ole Miss — 7:30 p.m. on ESPN — Preview, predictions
Florida

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Nearly Half of South America’s Mammals Came from North America, New Research May Explain Why | Smart News

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North and South America haven’t always been connected. South America functioned as a continent-sized island for millions of years following the extinction of the dinosaurs, incubating its own strange assembly of animals such as giant ground sloths, massive armored mammals akin to armadillos and saber-toothed marsupial carnivores. Meanwhile, North America was exchanging animals with Asia, populating it with the ancestors of modern horses, camels and cats, writes Asher Elbein for the New York Times.

Finally, when tectonic activity formed the Isthmus of Panama roughly ten million years ago, a massive biological exchange took place. The many species that had been evolving in isolation from one another on both continents began migrating across the narrow new land bridge. Llamas, raccoons, wolves and bears trekked south, while armadillos, possums and porcupines went north.

It would be reasonable to expect this grand biological and geological event, known to paleontologists as the Great American Biotic Interchange, resulted in equal numbers of northern and southern species spreading across the two land masses; but that’s not what happened.

Instead, many more North American mammal species made homes down south than the other way around. Almost half of living South American mammals have North American evolutionary roots, whereas only around ten percent of North American mammals once hailed from South America. Now, researchers who reviewed some 20,000 fossils may have an answer, according to the Times.

According to the paper, published this week in the journal the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the asymmetry of immigrant mammal diversity we see today was the result of droves of South American mammals going extinct, leaving gaping ecological holes waiting to be filled by northern species and reducing the pool of potential immigrant species to make the trek north, reports Christine Janis, an ecologist at

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