Sunday, September 22, 2019

Rosenberg’s Power Five Bottom Ten

By: Jeremy Rosenberg

Join me each week as I unmask the worst of the best, the teams that play in big time conferences, but end up with small time accomplishments. My bottom ten is made up only of so-called power five conference members. I have little interest in haranguing the UTEPs or Bowling Greens or Rices of the world. Nope, I’m after schools with massive football budgets, coaches with obnoxious salaries, and legions of sheep-like fanboys and fangirls to admit their program sucks.

10 .UCLA (1-3)

           Remember when Arizona State hired Herm Edwards and was universally mocked, while UCLA hired Chip Kelly and was universally praised? How’s that looking now? The Bruins managed to pull themselves up in the rankings with a nice comeback win against Washington State, but one win does not erase bad losses to Cincinnati and San Diego State. Kelly still has time to get UCLA up and running, but for now they are still a serious disappointment.

Next week: @ Arizona (Bear down Bruins. This game against Arizona will determine if the Wazoo game was for real or a fluke. I suspect the latter.)

Prognosis: Bruins down.

9. Arkansas (2-2)

            The Razorbacks suffered a truly embarrassing loss at home to San Jose State last night, vaulting them into the rankings. The Hogs wins are against Portland State and a Colorado State team that lost at home to Toledo. Soon they will run the gauntlet through the SEC West. I have a feeling Arkansas is here to stay.

Next week: vs. Texas A&M (So…you can’t beat San Jose State at home. What on earth would make anyone think you will beat A&M?)

Prognosis: Smoked Hog will be on the menu in Fayetteville.

8. Illinois (2-2)

            The Illini used to find a way to be relevant in the Big Ten every now and then. Now, they are the punching bag in the junior division. Close losses the past two weeks to Eastern Michigan and Nebraska have Lovie Smith facing some serious must win games if he wants to keep his job. This looks like a 3-9 team, and another frustrating rebuild in Champaign.

Next week: Bye

Prognosis: Lovie Smith will have decisions to make as to whether he wants to retire, move to the broadcast booth, or be a position coach in the NFL.

7. Kansas (2-2)

            Les may be more in Lawrence, but this is still a bad football team. A nice win at Boston College keeps the Jayhawks out of the top three, but there is still plenty of football to be played. At least Kansas, unlike Illinois, has started its rebuild. Also, how often can you say that Michigan is pining for the Kansas coach to save them?

Next week: @ TCU (The Frogs will be ornery after losing to SMU. Expect them to take it out on Kansas.)

Prognosis: Kansas falls below .500, where they will stay for the remainder of the season.

6.Vanderbilt (0-3)

            Yes, the Commodores are winless. Those losses, however, are to LSU, Georgia, and Purdue. Not a bad loss in the bunch, although the jury is still out on the Boilers. Considering Vandy dropped 38 points on the LSU defense I have to believe that wins will start to come at some point. 

Next week: vs. Northern Illinois (We’ll find out how bad the Dores truly are after they tangle with a mid-level MAC team.)

Prognosis: Vandy picks up their first win, but can’t escape the bottom ten. Yet.

5. South Carolina (1-3) 

            After hanging with Alabama for a couple quarters, the Cocks fell limp against Kelly Bryant and the Mizzou Tigers in the annual Battle of Columbias. Carolina’s only win was a home thrashing of Charleston Southern. Count me among the group that wonders exactly why major schools keep hiring Will Muschamp and expecting anything but mediocrity.

Next week: vs. Kentucky (The Wildcats are deciding if this is a rebuilding year or if they can squeeze their way back into a bowl. Better beat Carolina if you want to make a bowl.)

Prognosis: Toss up. We will find out more about Kentucky this week than the Gamecocks. Whatever the outcome, South Carolina is in for a world of suck this season.

4. Tennessee (1-3)

            It is stunning just how bad the SEC East is this year. Tennessee has no excuse. All the resources any program could desire, a cathedral of a stadium, and a cool checkered end zone. At least Tennessee boosters can take solace in the fact that they ran Greg Schiano out of town. This season is what happens when Athletic Directors let boosters and fanboys run their program.

Next week: Bye

Prognosis: Hey, the party continues in Knoxville. Greg Schiano isn’t your coach. Rejoice!

3. Georgia Tech (1-2)

            I’ll admit it. I loved the triple option offense under Paul Johnson. It gave Tech an identity, and made them very difficult to scheme against. Now, they are the team that lost to The Citadel. It could be a long, ugly rebuild in Atlanta.

Next week: @ Temple (Who knows what to make of the Owls? One week you beat a ranked Maryland team and the next you lose to Buffalo.)

Prognosis: Geoff Collins returns to Temple, and is greeted with a loss.

2. Oregon State (1-2)

            The Beavers righted the ship with a win over mighty Cal Poly. It seems like ages ago that Oregon State was relevant. It will probably be ages before they are again. 

Next week: vs. Stanford (This isn’t your Stanford team of the past few years, but they might look like it against the Beavs.)

Prognosis: Stanford gets their mojo back, at least for one week.

1. Rutgers (1-2)
            If I were a Rutgers fan I’d be pissed off in Piscataway. Not because they are suffering through another awful season. Not because one of the toughest places to win has one of the worst coaches in college football. No, I’d be pissed because Rutgers is forever buried in the Big Ten East. This is an AAC program. Period. They have no business being in the Big Ten. So instead of fighting for bowls and conference championships in the AAC, the Scarlet Knights are doomed. Doomed. DOOMED!!! But hey, at least they are number one at something.

Next week: @ Michigan (Even the overrated, overhyped Wolverines will feast on Rutgers. Captain Khaki will continue to pad his overall record by beating bad teams.)

Prognosis: Negative. But at least they bring the New York media market, right?

Schedule Shaming “Game” of The Week

            One of the most egregious offenses in college football is non-conference scheduling. Each week I will single out and ruthlessly shame one program for their gutless scheduling.

Wake Forest 49, Elon 7

            What are you doing Wake Forest? It’s difficult enough to determine if you are a good team, but you have to go and schedule Elon, Rice, and Utah State as your non-conference opponents? What did we learn from this week’s blowout win? Nothing. Hey, Demon Deacons, if you want people to take you seriously, SCHEDULE SOME REAL NON-CONFERENCE GAMES!!!