Yep it’s that time. Time to look at the worst of the worst. Relegation candidates if this was the English football league system. Sometimes I wish it was like that. Then you would get the hot FCS team (like future Mountain West Conference member North Dakota State) facing off against a shitty Group of Five team (like, say, Hawaii) to see who should stay up in FBS. But with conferences and TV contracts and realignment and a bunch of other crazy crap, this will never happen. But a man can dream right? OK just so you know I really don’t dream about this type of thing…much.
I will start with the winless teams because amazingly enough there are only four remaining. And here they are:
- Rice (0-5) – The Owls have been much worse than many thought to start the season. Saying that, their schedule (at least for a Conference USA team) wasn’t easy. Especially with Army and North Texas now having resurgent seasons. I still think they will play pretty good the rest of the way with a much weaker part of their schedule down the stretch. Predicted record: 5-7.
- Miami-Ohio (0-5) – I didn’t think much of this team this season. Figured they were a year off from bowl contention. But to lose to Eastern Illinois? That’s no Bueno. I’ll be honest: I have them winning one game the rest of the season and that’s against Eastern Michigan. And EMU is off to a 3-1 start. So I make this prediction with a bit of trepidation. Predicted record: 1-11.
- Arkansas State (0-4) – Wow have the Red Wolves got off to a HORRIBLE start. I am honestly shocked since I considered them a Sun Belt favourite. I still think they will end up going to a bowl and they may still be close to the Sun Belt title but it isn’t going to be easy sledding for this squad. Predicted record: 6-6.
- Georgia State (0-4) – Another surprise. Didn’t think they’d make any waves but they did go to a bowl game last season so you have to wonder what the reason is for the drop-off. Then again, their schedule wasn’t that easy but they should have beat Ball State. They won’t make a bowl game but won’t be near the bottom by year’s end. Predicted record: 4-8.
OK we’re done with the winless teams. I am going to throw in a couple other teams since other than the other Miami, none of these teams will be near the bottom at the end of the season. And no this doesn’t get you the #1 draft pick.
- Kansas (1-3) – Almost guaranteed they are going 0-fer the rest of the Big XII sked. Predicted record: 1-11.
- Charlotte (1-4) – A program that needs a few more years under its belt to become competitive. Right now that isn’t happening. Predicted record: 1-11.
- ULM (1-3) – Matt Viator was used to winning at McNeese State. It will take a while in Monroe, Louisiana. Predicted record: 1-11.
- Oregon State (1-3) – I would like to know the real reason Gary Andersen moved from Wisconsin to Corvallis. Why Gary? Seems like a bonehead move at best. Predicted record: 1-11.
Almost a guaranteed one of these teams will be 1-11 at the end of the season, if not more. Kansas is almost a foregone conculsion but it’s interesting that we may only have one 1-win team this season. I figured there would be multiple winless teams. Shows what I know.
Which leads into surprises and disappointments. There are some teams that are surprising the heck out of me (and many experts). Then there are some that are total shitshows and are so much worse than we imagined. Let’s start with the good news.
Wisconsin (4-1) – They were supposed to win between 7 and 9 games this year. They were not supposed to come out of the gate like they did. Other than a close loss to Michigan, they have been magnificent this season. Paul Chryst would be pretty much the coach of the year if it wasn’t for our next team on the list.
Nebraska (5-0) – Mike Riley has finally found the formula for this program. For now. The only way to say the Huskers are back is if they lose less than four games. Otherwise, fans will petition for Riley to change his last name to Pelini.
Wake Forest (4-1) – I figured the Deacs would make a bowl game. Didn’t think they’d start with four straight wins. They have a pretty good shot at getting to eight wins this season thanks to one of the weaker ACC schedules.
Colorado (4-1) – Is it the late 80s or early 90s again? Is Bill McCartney at the helm? This team is somehow at the top of the Pac-12 South and looks like a bowl game possibility this season which is huge. Mike MacIntyre deserves a big raise and a contract extension for what he’s done there.
Notre Dame (2-3) – This is arguably the biggest disappointment of the season. I, along with many others, figured that the Irish would be at least in New Year’s Six contention if not CFP bound if they navigated their schedule properly. Instead they start 2-3, fire their defensive coordinator, and may axe the rest of the staff if things don’t improve.
Oregon (2-3) – Two wins in their first five and dead last in the Pac-12 North. Terrible. They won’t finish there but they are going to struggle to make a bowl game this season. I have this feeling that if Mark Helfrich can’t turn this around and quick, he could be out of a job and another huge Power Five head coaching job (and potential Les Miles destination) will open up.
Texas (2-2) – OK this is more of a disappointment to most out there. I pegged Texas as a middle-of-the-road Big XII team to make a decent bowl. That’s it. Some had them winning the conference and being a College Football Playoff contender. Seriously? I think Chuck Strong is going to be looking for another job at the end of the season unless they somehow win at least seven games down the stretch (including a bowl game) out of their next eight (nine with a bowl game).
Michigan State (2-2) – Funny how two of the teams on this list beat a third. Ah, good times. I had picked Michigan State for the College Football Playoff this season because I guess I’m a dumbass. No, I figured their schedule was easy enough (by B1G standards) to warrant this prediction. Never thought they would lose to Wisconsin, let alone Indiana. So they are a disappointment to most and a MASSIVE disappointment to me. Sparty, NO!
There you go. So guaranteed one of the teams on the surprise list will fall flat on their face and one of the disappointments will damn near run the table. Just to make me look bad.
Alright, tonight we have college football…wait, tonight? AW YEAH! Georgia Southern travels to Jonesboro to face a surprisingly pathetic Arkansas State team (that I outlined above). And the games are on TSN! Right now on the TSN site it says TSN3 only but I am positive I noticed it on two different TSN channels this morning. Either way, at least one of the TSNs is showing it, which is good.
UPDATE: I must be blind or was seeing things. It is only on TSN3. There are more important things, evidently, on the other four channels. They are: UFC Presents, early rounds of the China Open, and the World Series of Poker. Yeah I don’t get it either.
Tomorrow I will have the college football schedule up. However, Hurricane Matthew (that prick) could be causing problems with it. Kind of like last year when the LSU-South Carolina game had to be moved from Columbia to Baton Rouge and the time changed and it caused all sorts of domino effects. So I will be diligent with updates. NFL sked, as per usual, goes up Friday.