- Edward Aschoff, ESPN Staff Writer
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The SEC might not have captured its eighth straight BCS national title, but seven teams finished the 2013 season ranked in the Associated Press Top 25.
Auburn's thrilling 34-31 loss to Florida State in the VIZIO BCS National Championship Game left the Seminoles in the No. 1 spot, with all 60 votes, and the Tigers at No. 2.
South Carolina, which defeated Wisconsin 34-24 in the Capital One Bowl, followed Auburn, ranking fourth in the poll. It's the highest postseason ranking in school history, the ninth time the Gamecocks have ranked in the final AP poll and the third-straight top-10 finish.
Missouri, which ended a wonderful second season in the SEC with an exciting 41-31 win over former Big 12 foe Oklahoma State in the AT&T Cotton Bowl, finished fifth.
After losing 45-31 to Oklahoma in the Allstate Sugar Bowl, Alabama, which had won two straight BCS national titles, ranks seventh in the AP poll, its lowest finish since ranking 10th at the conclusion of the 2010 season.
LSU finished the season at 14th, Texas A&M is 18th and Vanderbilt came in at No. 24.
Auburn's loss to Florida State to close out the BCS era will no doubt hurt the SEC until it gets a chance to redeem itself in the College Football Playoff, but it was another strong finish overall for the conference, which led all conferences in AP poll members.
7dGreg Ostendorf and Alex Scarborough