July 13, 2024

This week in the Group of 5 – 9/13/16

Remember reading about how there were no good matchups this week in college football from various pundits last week? That was entertaining. Turns out, it was another weekend of chaos. Pitt beat Penn State, Utah held off BYU after 87 million combined turnovers, Arkansas beat a ranked TCU team in 2OTs, UConn lost to Navy,  Central Michigan should not have beaten Oklahoma State because the officials f’d up, but the win stands. Both Clemson and Georgia took a tumble down the Coaches and AP polls, after barely beating Troy and Nicholls State respectively. We’re to the part of the story where the top of the rankings are starting to solidify. Nobody has any arguments about Alabama being the best team in the country, but everything else is still up for grabs.

Last week didn’t move the Group of Five top Five much, but this week’s results did. That’s the fun part about the Chaos Monster. Never know when he will strike. G5 teams that lose don’t get to stay in the rankings this early, so buh-bye, BYU and USA. Better luck next season!

5. Georgia Southern Eagles
Georgia Southern has a 2-0 start, and was able to get past University of Southern Alabama fairly easily this weekend. This is a team that does not have a real chance at the G5 spot without everyone in front of them losing at least twice, but they’re in the conversation just by virtue of their record.

4. Western Michigan Broncos
WMU has been the next Boise State for like, three seasons now, and finally started getting some traction by beating a P5 team in Northwestern in week 1, and then putting 70 on a cupcake. It’s about time there’s some Fun Belt representation in the rankings, and PJ Fleck has the Broncos rolling. We’ll see if they survive Illinois next week, but for now, Row that Boat, boys.

3. Boise State Broncos
Boise State did come out victorious in some #Pac12AfterDark shit that happened Saturday night, where they lead most of the way and let WSU in at the end. Luckily, Boise’s defense bailed out some of the questionable offensive clock management and decision making by batting down Falk’s Hail Mary attempt for the win, but WSU isn’t exactly a victory to crow about at this point. If they make some noise in the Pac after getting themselves together then the value of this victory can be discussed further, but for right now, it just didn’t have enough style points to keep Boise ahead of…

2. San Diego State Aztecs
SDSU has won 12 straight after beating Cal last night, riding RB DJ Pumphrey for 281 yards on 29 carries and 3 TDs. This put Pumphrey past Marshall Faulk’s school record. While the Heisman talk surrounding the Aztec’s RB is a bit far fetched, he is a special talent that is going to make a lot of noise this season. Especially if the Aztecs can resist succumbing to the sickness that makes MWC teams sometimes lose to teams that they have no business losing to later in the year. Cal put up big numbers, and just are a better power conference win than Boise had vs. WSU.

1. Houston Cougars
All hail the kings. Sure, Lamar wasn’t what one could call a challenging opponent for the Cougars this week, and UH did not play their actual Heisman candidate QB Greg Ward Jr. vs. the Cardinals, but they still blanked their opponent and are now 2-0. The Coaches Poll has them ranked as the #6 team in the country, which is likely about six spots higher than they should be, but poll watching in September is a little bit like predicting a presidential election two years out.

(Honorable Mention: Central Michigan because a hail mary followed by a lateral at the end of their game was FREAKING AWESOME even if it shouldn’t have counted.)

Games to watch for next week:

Meow – Houston @ Cincinnati – 7:30p ET Thursday on ESPN
Cincinnati is a good football team, so we finally get to find out if Houston is as thirsty for wins as they appear. The Bearcats are tough on the ground, and defensively could make Houston’s offense look much less potent than the first two game’s results show. However, Cincinnati also nearly let Purdue back into a game they were outmatched in, so we might see the Cougars go off next week and show UC just what yardage looks like.

Howling In The Darkness – New Mexico @ Rutgers – 12:00p ET Saturday on ESPN News
The only reason this is on the list is the fact that the Lobos somehow managed to lose to New Mexico State last week and are going to be angry. Angry Lobos run wild and everyone likes watching Rutgers pay the price for the rest of college football’s sins. NM could legit put up 600 yards rushing next weekend, amusing everyone in the Tri State area as well as the Mountain West. The Big ten, however…

Row, Row, Row The Boat, Gently Up The Stream – Western Michigan @ Illinois 4:00p ET Saturday on ESPN News
Yanno who would really like to nom on a Big Ten team? The Western Michigan Broncos. Illinois appears to be ripe for the picking too, after losing to North Carolina last weekend in a heavily penalized game with a fast start. Can the Broncos keep up, and have enough depth to finish the job?

Battle Of The Mountain Animal Mascots – BYU @ UCLA 10:15p ET on ESPN2
Sure, BYU lost to Utah this weekend, but the game was close and BYU looked pretty good with the exception of all the turnovers and that botched 2 pt conversion. The Utes aren’t slouches, but neither is UCLA and between these two games, we should really know who BYU is. While they are not eligible for the G5 spot in the NY6 bowls, blowing out UCLA and winning out could mean they are in the conversation at the end of the year if everything goes insane.

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Tami Dooley 142 Articles

Tami is from Idaho. She's a fan of the Boise State Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks, college football on the whole, and almost thought about becoming a baseball fan for a minute one time. Send whiskey.

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