It’s hard to believe that we are almost midway through the college football season. The Hustle Belt team decided to break out our power rankings. Our staff of writers did not agree on one team. Not the best, not the worst, and not anyone in between.
0-5 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 11.75
The MAC’s only team without a win, it’s no surprise that they are dead last. Several voters felt they weren’t the worst team, however. I guess because 3 of their losses weren’t absolute blowouts, they get some credit for that. Snark aside, they made a run at the end of last season, and there are certainly some indications that they might make a decent run to close out 2017.
1-4 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 11.25
The Golden Flashes showed that they could complete some passes last week. That, and a win against Howard in the second game of the season, were enough for the Flashes to pass the Falcons and end up number 11 on our list.
They face Northern Illinois, Miami, and Ohio in their next three. That’s a pretty brutal run.
2-3 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 9.5.
The Cardinals have looked solid all season, right up until they got slaughtered by the Western Michigan Broncos. Was that a one game anomaly, or is it telling of things to come?
#9 Akron Zips
2-3 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 8.75.
In their last two games, the Zips beat Bowling Green and played Troy tough. That loss is looking a lot more impressive after the beat down the Trojans gave LSU.
2-3 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 7.375
After starting the season 2-0, the Chippewas have rattled off 3 straight losses. They take on Ohio and Toledo up next, so the L’s might continue to pile up.
#7 Miami RedHawks
2-3 overall, 1-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 7.
The RedHawks lost close games against rivals Marshall and Cincinnati. Had they managed to pull out those very winnable games, the spanking by Notre Dame wouldn’t have been such a big deal for this team that was supposed to be, and still might be, a contender in the MAC East.
Up next for Miami is Bowling Green.
3-2 overall, 1-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 6.5.
I thought this would be Lance Leipold’s last season. Buffalo was supposed to have a good defense because of all the returning starters. My thinking was with a defense as terrible as Buffalo had last season, why would you want starters returning?
I was wrong. Not only is Buffalo sitting at 3-2, their losses were against Army and Minnesota by a combined 14. On the flip side, however, their wins were against Kent, FAU, and toothpaste.
I wanted to make sure I made my apologies to the Buffalo faithful now, because they have WMU, NIU, and Miami up next. This might be the last time I can say, “Buffalo is pretty good.” At least for a few weeks.
2-2 overall, 0-1 in the MAC. Average vote, 4.25
The teams really start to bunch up at this point. Eastern Michigan, at least to this guy, has shown that last season wasn’t a fluke, and they are actually a program on the rise.
Chris Creighton came in and wanted to create a tough team that plays good defense, and that’s exactly what they do. If the offense ever picks up the pace this season, they could move from being a good team to a great team.
2-2 overall, 0-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 3.875.
The opinions for the Huskies are all over the place. One voter had them number 1 and one voter had them number 7. I personally had them at three, but I can give good arguments on why they should be higher and lower.
On the one hand, their losses could have been wins, and they have a win against Nebraska. Their losses were to a BC team that is better than their record and a ranked SDSU team. On the other hand, they are 2-2, and we really don’t know just how good SDSU is. Or Nebraska. Or BC.
Up next for the Huskies are Kent, Buffalo, and Bowling Green. We have a pretty good idea how “good” at least 2 of those three are. We might not have a definitive answer on this team for a while.
#3 Western Michigan Broncos
3-2 overall, 1-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 3.75.
The PJ Fleck effect is real. What does it do? Two things, really.
One, it makes a lot of people give less credit to the Fleckless Broncos than they should. The Broncos battled USC and lost to a resurgent Michigan State their first two games and then have rattled off 3 straight wins, including a pounding of a good Ball State team.
Two, mentioning PJ Fleck when talking about this year’s Broncos team sends a lot of their fans into a frenzy. So please, when talking about the PJ Fleckless Broncos, mention PJ Fleck as little as possible, so as not to anger the fans sensitive about PJ Fleck leaving. PJ Fleck.
#2 Ohio Bobcats
4-1 overall, 1-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 2.375.
A bad start against a good Purdue team is what prevents the Bobcats from being number 1 on our list. I guess you could throw in the puzzling defensive performance against UMass.
If the Bobcats are who we think they are, they will rattle off wins against CMU, BGSU, and Kent. They should also beat Miami, setting up what could be an epic showdown against the Rockets, who they knocked off in Toledo last year.
3-1 overall, 0-0 in the MAC. Average vote, 1.625.
The Rockets enter their MAC season with a giant target on their back. They were the preseason picks to win it all and now it’s time to deliver.
Up first for the Rockets is a defensive minded team, the Eastern Michigan Eagles. The Rockets stay at number 1 just might be short lived.