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College Football Rankings: Let’s Welcome Florida State and Kansas Back to The Bottom 25

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25. Ball Status 1-1 Ball State is the first of six MAC teams in the rankings this week, which I’m excited to see. I’ve always thought of the MAC as The Bottom 25’s official conference. The league routinely “books up” early in the season for its non-conference, leading to a lot of losses. Ball State is here because it just lost 44-13 at Penn State. This week there’s a road game against Wyoming. (Last week: not ranked) 24. Eastern Michigan 1-1 It’s not just that the Wisconsin Eagles lost 34-7, it’s that they were held up to 92 yards of offense. And even that total is misleading, because it was sometime in the third quarter when I checked the box score, and the EMU only had 52 yards. I texted a friend who is a Wisconsin alum, and they told me they were right to feel bad about what the badger defenses were doing to the Eagles. Perhaps this week, EMU fans will feel sorry for No. 10 UMass when they go to Amherst. (NR) 23. Bowling Green 0-2 Three consecutive MAC teams to start the rankings! The Falcons fall seven places to number 23 because, although they lost to South Alabama 22-19, they played well enough to improve their numbers after losing 38-6 to Tennessee. This week, the Falcons hope to take their first win against Murray State. (16) 22. Louisiana 1-1 So, remember all the talk about how the Ragin’ Cajuns came back so many times from last year’s Sun Belt championship team? Do you remember how they started the season? Well, losing 38-18 to Texas is one thing, but struggling to make Nicholl’s 27-24 is a bit worrisome, isn’t it? (NR) 21. Florida State 0-2 The good news is that Florida State’s two losses are up by six combined points. The bad news is there was one to Jacksonville State and the schedule isn’t getting any easier. This week it’s a road trip to Wake Forest. (NR) 20. Arizona 0-2 I felt there was a good chance that Arizona would be the worst team in the Pac-12 this season and for two weeks nothing has changed about this opinion. The Wildcats followed up a 24-16 loss to BYU with a 38-14 loss to San Diego State. Losing those two teams is nothing to be ashamed of, but it’s not like the Pac-12 will offer easier opponents. The good news is that Northern Arizona has a good chance of a win this week. (NR) 19. Vanderbilt 1-1 Vanderbilt won The Bottom 25 Game of the Century against Colorado State in a 24-21 thriller. Unfortunately, a win over the Rams wasn’t enough to get them out of The Bottom 25, and the Commodores have another challenging game this weekend against a Stanford team that put the final nail in Clay Helton’s coffin. (4) 18. East Carolina 0-2 I’ll keep waiting for East Carolina to take the next step under coach Mike Houston. The Pirates had good chances to make statements against Appalachian State and South Carolina, but came up short. This week offers another chance on the road against a Marshall team that looked great for two weeks. (NR) 17. Kansas 1-1 The first thought that came to mind when Kansas defeated South Dakota 17-14 to open the season was, “the Jayhawks won’t start the season in The Bottom 25!” Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for them to get home. A 49-22 loss to Coastal Carolina wiped out all the good stuff. This week the Jayhawks get Baylor in Lawrence. (NR) 16. Southern Georgia 1-1 Maybe Florida Atlantic is better than I thought? The Owls played pretty well in a loss to Florida, passing Georgia Southern 38-6 last weekend. Now the Eagles are staring a road trip to Arkansas in the face before getting No. 22 Louisiana to open Sun Belt play. (NR) 15. Tulsa 0-2 Honestly, I didn’t feel like Tulsa was the lesser team during the 28-23 loss to Oklahoma State. It was just on the wrong side of the score when it ended. After two games, the Golden Hurricane is 0-2, with a loss of seven points. That’s a good sign for the future, but Tulsa is on track to face an angry Ohio State team this week. (11) 14. ULM 0-1 The Warhawks took the weekend off, but will be back in action this week against Deion Sanders’ Jackson State. (12) 13. Hawaii 1-2 The Rainbow Warriors are 0-2 against the Pac-12 and 1-0 against everyone else. This week they’re going to face someone from everyone else, but it just happens to be reigning Mountain West champ San Jose State. (NR) 12. South Florida 0-2 We can’t ignore the fact that South Florida started the season with two Power Five opponents — NC State and Florida — but the Bulls have a lot of work to do. They followed up a 45-0 loss to the Wolfpack with a 42-20 loss to the Gators, which didn’t seem nearly as close as the score suggests. (10) 11. Ohio 0-2 Life after Frank Solich has been tough. The Bobcats followed up their 29-9 season opening loss against Syracuse with a 28-26 loss to Duquesne. It was Duquesne’s first win on an FBS program in school history. Now the Bobcats are facing a brief reversal as they prepare for a road trip to No. 22 Louisiana on Thursday night. It’s the bottom 25th century game of the week! (22) 10. UMass 0-2 Hey, the Minutemen have a spread covered! It’s not the same as winning, but it’s a step in the right direction! This week, UMass is looking forward to taking home a win on the board against No. 24 Eastern Michigan. 9. UNLV 0-2 Yes, I think the rebels will be here all season. They are already 0-2 with losses against Eastern Washington and Arizona State, and their next six games are Iowa State, Fresno State, UTSA, Utah State, San Jose State and Nevada. This is a team that can easily be 0-8 or 1-7. (6) 8. Miami (OH) 0-2 Being a Redhawks fan makes me feel good about the 31-26 loss to Minnesota. The team played well; they lost just a week to a Big Ten opponent after losing to the Cincinnati top-10. With Long Island it gets a lot easier this week. The same Long Island that lost 48-10 to FIU and 66-0 to West Virginia. (5) 7. State of Georgia 0-2 It was a tough start to the season for the Panthers, who followed up their 43-10 loss to Army with a 59-17 loss to North Carolina. This week brings a tough Charlotte team that opened the season with a road win against Duke. (23) 6. New Mexico St. 0-3 The Aggies aren’t a great football team, but they’ve shown a lot more fighting than I expected in their last two defeats to San Diego State and New Mexico. This week offers their best chance of winning for a while with the arrival of South Carolina State to the city. (7) 5. Rice 0-2 Starting your season with games against Arkansas, Houston and Texas is tough, so it’s no surprise to see the Owls at 0-2. I’m sure they wish the Longhorns would come into the game this weekend as well on the basis of a win rather than a loss. (21) 4. State of Colorado 0-2 The Rams lost to Vanderbilt last week, but still dropped three places in the rankings because they played pretty well. Now the Rams must hit the road to take on the same Toledo team that nearly knocked out Notre Dame on Saturday. (1) 3. Navy 0-2 It’s never a good sign when your offensive coordinator is fired after the second game of the season, but it’s a wise move. Navy has racked up 10 points in two games and it’s not like they’re dealing with elite defense. The Mids are taking the weekend off and hoping to get things sorted before opening AAC play against Houston next week. (8) 2. UConn 0-3 So… firing Randy Edsall didn’t fix it. Losing 49-0 at home to Purdue, the Huskies can now prepare for the joys of defending an option team. It’s not often you see teams that are nearly five touchdown underdogs against the military, but not many teams are UConn. (3) 1. Akron 0-2 It’s hard to argue with the rankings on this one. Akron lost to Auburn 60-10 to open the season and followed it up with a 45-24 loss to Temple. That’s the same Temple team that dropped Rutgers 61 points a week earlier. According to Bottom 25 math, Rutgers is 68 points better than Akron. This week the Zips face Bryant, and I suggest they win that match. (2)

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