Brought to you by the same people that gave you the 24 hour sports news cycle, we now have the 12 month football season. ESPN released their initial preseason F.P.I rankings. It’s not the official preseason rankings, because they are subject to change. While in all probability the final rankings will look nothing like this list, it’s still fun to talk about, even if I am feigning indignation at rankings coming out so early.
The first thing that jumps out at me is that I have to scroll all the way down to 51 to find the first non power 5 team. I don’t think I am going out on a limb when I say this computer is heavily biased against the little guy. Stupid computers.
We see our first MAC team at 65. Jason Candle’s Toledo squad returns Logan Woodside, so it makes sense they would be the highest ranked MAC team. He did lead the country in touchdown passes last season. 65 seems awfully low for a team that flirted with the rankings several times last season, but I can live with it.
The next team makes me think ESPN isn’t even trying past the top 25. Western Michigan lost their coach, their starting quarterback in Zach Terrell, and the best player in the MAC in Corey Davis. While some are predicting doom and gloom for the Broncos, I am not. I just don’t predict they will finish number 2 in the MAC, at least this early in the off season.
Apparently they noticed the run Miami had last season, as they ranked them next out of MAC teams at 85. In case I haven’t been clear, they really think the MAC is going to be terrible next season.
Central Michigan comes in at 89, Ohio 91 and Northern Illinois 94. Interestingly, to me anyway, is that Cincinnati is squeezed in there at 90. I guess they think coach Fickell has his work cut out for him.
Akron is 104, and Ball State is right below them at 105. Mr. Computer obviously wasn’t impressed with the Eagles bowl run last season, as it has them at 112, right below Bowling Green. Kent State is ranked 116, and Buffalo rounds out the MAC at 122 out of 130 FBS teams.
Here is the list on how the F.P.I. had all the MAC teams.
- Toledo Rockets (65)
- Western Michigan Broncos (70)
- Miami RedHawks (85)
- Central Michigan Chippewas (89)
- Ohio University Bobcats (91)
- Northern Illinois Huskies (94)
- Akron Zips (104)
- Ball State Cardinals (105)
- Bowling Green Falcons (111)
- Eastern Michigan Eagles (112)
- Kent State Golden Flashes (116)
- Buffalo Bulls (122)
I don’t think the list is anywhere accurate as to how the season is going to go, and it’s not even promoted as such. It is something to get us talking about football, which is always a good thing.