The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 7
By Gaylon Kent
The Writer's Shack
October 12, 2015
Proving 2015 may be the deepest Bottom Ten field ever, every ranked team that played this past weekend lost, showing how tough the race for the ESPNCup is going to be this season. The field is so deep Miami of Ohio, a MAC team that hasn't won since Week 1, only made the survey because Idaho didn't play.
And with no less than five (5) unvictoried teams remaining, Bottom Ten fan(s) could be looking at the first winless medal stand in Bottom Ten history, forcing Bottom Ten pollsters to utilize official Bottom Ten tiebreakers, whatever the hell those might be. No one is entirely sure.
This week's mess:
1. New Mexico State (0-5; lost to Ole Miss 52-3)
Mitigating Factors: Aggies starting to gel in quest for first ever B-10 title, with offense turning in lowest point total of 2015 while defense continues to shine, tenaciously holding Ole Miss to one (1) punt…B-10 pollsters "pretty sure" there's a Points-Scored-To-Opponents-Punt-Ratio joke in there somewhere, but aren't bright enough to figure it out… Aggies defense a statistical juggernaut, ranking Next-To-Dead-Last in Total Defense (568.2 ypg) and 124th in Rushing Defense (273.4 ypg).
Numbers Racket: 15th straight loss good for Nation's Longest Losing Streak (NLLS), and team's best skid since famous 18-gamer of 2012-13, though both well shy of team record of 27 from 1988-90.
Next Loss: at Georgia Southern
2. Wyoming (0-6; lost to Air Force 31-17)
Mitigating Factors: Unlike most B-10 medal stand teams, Cowboys not ranking particularly low - or high depending on your point of view - in any major stat category, except the one that matters, getting beat by an average score of 33.8-19.0 in 2015…Wyoming shows turnovers easy way to give opponents chances to score, with even latest crop of flyboy officer candidates able to turn four (4) Cowboy turnovers into 21 points.
Broad Historical Context: Current nine (9)-game skid best since 2001-02 squads lost 12 straight.
Next Loss: Nevada
3. Kansas (0-5; lost to Baylor 66-7)
Mitigating Factors: Jayhawks not even bothering in this one, breaking out to 7-0, 14-7, 21-7, 24-7, 31-7, 38-7, 45-7, 52-7, 59-7 and 66-7 deficits before calling off the dogs and holding Baylor scoreless in fourth quarter…Since they kept giving up quick scores and receiving kickoffs, Jayhawks actually led crucial time of possession battle by almost ten (10) minutes.
Bound For Glory: While not ranking Dead Last in anything, Jayhawks do rank 100th or worse in sixteen (16!) official stat categories and 120th or worse in seven (7).
Next Loss: Texas Tech
4. North Texas (0-5; lost to Portland State 66-7)
Mitigating Factors: Trailing 66-0, North Texas starts comeback one (1) minute left in game as offense puts some recruiting prospects that hadn't fled yet in the game against Portland State band members getting some PE extra credit...Mean Green off to first 0-5 start since 2008…Also started 0-5 in 2007, when they won only B-10 title…Statswise, North Texas so bad it is actually easier to list the categories they do not rank 100th or worse in (8) than the ones they do (16).
Tough Love: Despite winless start, blowout loss to lower level school, Mean Green fires head coach for not having made B-10 medal stand yet.
Next Loss: Western Kentucky
5. Central Florida (0-6; lost to UConn 40-13)
Mitigating Factors: Showing special teams is a full one-third of the game, kickoff return squad does its part when return man runs kick out of end zone, then returns to end zone to take knee, resulting in two points for UConn…With seventh straight loss, B-10 staffers have proclaimed UCF 'fully recovered" from Fiesta Bowl win over Baylor following 2013 season.
FunFact: Knights so bad running the football their 60 yards rushing vs Huskies actually bumped up their average to 50.2 yards per game.
Next Loss: at Temple
6. Eastern Michigan (1-5; lost to Akron 47-21)
Mitigating Factors: Offense actually not too bad, so Eagles doing it with defense, ranking Dead Last in Rushing Defense (360 ypg) and 118th in Scoring Defense (40.7 ppg)…With only win coming against Wyoming, Eagles will continue to get strength of schedule points with each Cowboy loss…Nov. 7 showdown at Miami, Ohio could be for MAC title and spot in B-10 regionals.
Taking To Twitter: Hoping to inspire team to B-10 glory, Athletic and Marketing departments join forces to come up with #ChampionsBuiltHere hashtag pasted on football website.
Next Loss:at Toledo
7. Miami, Ohio (1-5; lost to Ohio 34-3)
Mitigating Factors:2013 champs make triumphant return to survey following blowout loss in always tough MAC…Though RedHawks making first appearance of 2015, they are now firmly on B-10 radar following twelve (12) first down, 87 rushing yard, four (4) turnover performance…Second quarter field goal only blemish for offense, as every other drive ended in either an interception or punt…RedHawks have lost 31 of 34, including 21 straight on road, best in MAC
In The Crosshairs: With only win coming in Week 1, RedHawks now prime candidates for Tostitos Plaque - issued to team with longest losing streak in a season that actually includes a win - should they lose out.
Next Loss: Northern Illinois
8. Cheyney (0-6; lost to East Stroudsburg 69-7)
Mitigating Factors: Division II Wolves showing no signs of letting up, losing 38th straight game to retain Continental Cup - issued to team with longest all-division losing streak in NAFTA sphere-of-influence… Attention-getting third straight shutout ruined when defense returns fumble for touchdown…Alumni so thrilled with loss, they want to invite East Stroudsburg back for Homecoming every year.
Welcome Back: Special teams getting slaps on the back for converting first extra point since Week 1.
Next Loss: at Lock Haven
9. Fresno State (1-5; lost to Utah State 56-14)
Mitigating Factors: Tied 7-7 after first quarter, Bulldogs take command in second quarter, getting outscored 22-0…Momentum carries over into 14-0 third quarter, too…Bulldogs giving clinic in quest for B-10 glory, going from 11-2 mark in 2013 to 6-8 last year to contending for B-10 medal stand this year.
Light At The End Of The Tunnel: Bulldogs another team on track for Tostitos Plaque - issued to team with longest losing streak in a season that actually includes a win - as only win came in opener.
Next Loss: UNLV (10/16)
10. Army (1-5; lost to Duke 44-3)
Mitigating Factors: Army hampered by recent Defense Department ruling requiring team to kickoff at least five times every game in order to receive full credit on PE final exam…In homage to once and future B-10 stalwarts, Cadets serenade Duke fans with alma mater following game…Black Knights of Confusion can really solidify B-10 street cred this week with second loss of 2015 to lower level team.
B-10 History Lesson: Duke, the B-10 Team of the Decade for the Double Aughts, have completely lost their minds, having appeared in two bowl games and the ACC Championship Game Presented by Hurricane Joaquin the past two (2) seasons…Duke being Duke, of course, they have lost these games.
Next Loss: Bucknell
This Week's Clash of the Titans: Central Florida at Temple
Sun Belt Conference Thriller of the Week: Eastern Michigan at Toledo
Maybe Battle of the PBS Stars Is On: Western Kentucky at North Texas
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