What is a power ranking? Everyone of our voters has a different view of what that means. For this writer, it means a combination of cache, momentum, form, and talent. FAU had done the most leading up to this season, but they lost a lot of mystique in Norman.
I feel like they will gain that back again, and so I am not too concerned but they did drop a bit.
Here is how the panel of distinguished voters voted (12 submissions this week). The panel liked North Texas’ win over SMU, and Marshall’s win over Miami. They made jumps. FAU was punished. UAB, Tech, and USM mostly stayed the same but USM jumped by virtue of some drops. ODU dropped from mid-table to near-bottom.
- NT (10 first place votes) — Last Week 2
- Marshall — LW 3
- FAU (2 first place votes) — LW 1
- UAB — LW 4
- La Tech — LW 5
- Southern Miss — 8
- FIU — LW 7
- Middle Tennessee — LW 6
- WKU — LW 11
- UTSA — LW 10
- Rice — LW 12
- Charlotte — LW 13
- ODU — LW 9
- UTEP — LW 14
One man’s vote:
- North Texas
Mason Fine threw for 444 and 3 scores as NT easily dismantled the SMU defense in front of a record crowd at Apogee. That was somewhat expected, however. The scary news? The defense held a formerly explosive SMU offense to 0 points through 3.5 quarters. A late explosion against backups allowed 23 points and 250 passing yards. That defense had SMU below 100 before then. We will see how good SMU is, but for now, NT looks scary good.
Have Questions But Got Wins
CR holds Marshall at arms length, but a good outing and solid play from QB Isaiah Green means the Herd are looking good early.
The J’Mar Smith fan club is getting lonely with just me and seemingly Skip Holtz on it. He threw three picks but led Tech to a win. Jaqwis Dancy run wild, which is good. That meet up in Denton is looming larger.
We cannot discount the talent on the roster. Oklahoma is really good and no CUSA squad would have definitely performed better on Saturday against the Crimson and Cream. Still, Chris Robison cannot complete a pass and the defense cannot tackle at all. Concerns for Lane Kiffin.
Blazers do not move any because they had a glorified practice outing against Savannah State. It was an impressive outing, but still, we did not learn too much.
Move up by default
The Golden Eagles move up because everyone else lost. Sure, Jack Abraham looks like the answer at QB and Quez Watkins looks explosive, but that was Jackson St. Given the fate of UTEP and ODU, everyone in Hattiesburg should count their blessings where they can, of course.
Questions, No Answers
Had a chance at an upset but failed. Not terrible. Mostly understandable. Still slowly rebuilding something good.
Losing to Wisconsin is not embarrassing. New QB Drew Eckles will not impress you with his numbers, but if you were watching closely, you saw some good things.
Losing to Vandy is frustrating but also understandable. Coach Stockstill has to find a way to keep the defense off of Kid Stockstill or this season will be another lost cause.
Lost but moved up? Yes, because this game was a good advertisement for the Bloomgren ethos. The Owls battled against Houston and Heisman candidate Ed Oliver and led after one half. The run game actually moved the ball against that defense, and the pass game showed enough to score points. The rest of the division does not have as good of a defense — or offense — as Houston (save for NT) and Rice can jump up and bite some teams. Look out UTSA, USM.
Frank Wilson hired a new offensive coordinator and auditioned new QBs. His offense looked terrible, and the two QBs that played looked out of their depth. Arizona State looked amazing on all sides of the ball and tore through the once-famed UTSA defense easily. Without Dalton Sturm to bail out the offense, things look grim in San Antonio.
Hot Seat But Cooling
A relatively comfortable win over Fordham went under the radar of most league coverage and that is a good thing. The Shame Bell is ringing for Old Dominion right now, and UTEP is in line next. Brad Lambert is still on notice, but his group did not draw attention and that is a good thing.
Sure, everyone loves Bobby Wilder including this blog, but he dipped early from Media Days, produced an awful opener, and has now presided over two poor seasons. He could have lived with another 5-7 season, but getting trounced by Liberty is nigh unforgivable. That said, we may just find out that the Flames are really good and this was understandable.
Dimel is in for a long, unforgiving time in El Paso.