Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Rosenberg's Power Five Bottom Ten for Week 8

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 that refuse to admit their program sucks.

            It was quite a week last weekend for the Power Five Bottom Ten. Never before have so many bad teams pulled out so many unlikely victories. For Oregon State and Illinois, it means they are out of the rankings. Of course, this allows for a new crop of crappy teams to take their place.

10. Syracuse (3-4)

            High expectations have turned into low outcomes. The Orange were once ranked in the CSO Mock CFP top 25 this season, but now make their ignominious entry into the Bottom Ten. With wins against Liberty, Western Michigan, and Holy Cross, ‘Cuse has precisely zero quality wins.

Next week: @ Florida State (Watch out Willie Taggart, the Bottom Ten has been eyeing your group of underachievers all season long.)

Prognosis: Syracuse proves they deserve this ranking.

9. UCLA (2-5)

            The Bruins put a pasting on the Stanford Cardinal last Thursday, which should have been a clue that weird happenings were afoot. UCLA has wins against Washington State and Stanford, and conference wins always count for more than pathetic drubbings of FCS fodder.

Next week: vs Arizona State (The Devils are coming off a loss, and desperately need to beat UCLA to get back on track.)

Prognosis: Could this be the week the Bruins finally turn it around and get out of the Bottom Ten? Probably not.

8. Purdue (2-5)

            The Boilermakers are back after a brief dalliance with respectability. Short of winning out, this season has been an injury-riddled disappointment in West Lafayette.

Next week: vs Illinois (Beating an undefeated top ten team almost makes me think that the Illini want no part of the Bottom Ten.)

Prognosis: Balance is restored to the universe, as Illinois cannot maintain its momentum and fall to the Boilers.

7. Vanderbilt (2-5)

            How does a team lose an all-time embarrassing game at home against UNLV, and then turn around and beat a ranked team? Perhaps Mizzou never deserved to be ranked in the first place.

Next week: BYE

Prognosis:Vandy gets a week to bask in their upset victory. Good for them.

6. Tennessee (2-5)

            The Vols were predictably beat by a bored Alabama Crimson Tide team. There should be nowhere to go from here, as Tennessee has a pretty soft schedule the rest of the way.

Next week: vs. South Carolina (Who knows what to make of the ‘Cocks? Lose to Tennessee and the Georgia win starts to look like an all-time fluke.)

Prognosis: Who is the bigger fraud? My hunch is that it is South Carolina.

5. Arkansas (2-5)

            Three SEC teams in a row, proving that while the highs are high, the lows are indeed low. After a 51-10 beatdown by Auburn last Saturday, things are ready to go from bad to worse for the Hogs.

Next week: @ Alabama(It will take all of Nick Saban’s acumen to keep the crowd from leaving at halftime.)

Prognosis: Bleak. Hogs to the slaughter.

4. Georgia Tech (2-5)

            So many teams won last week that Tech’s improbable OT win over hapless Miami only moved them up two spots. The ACC is so weak that the conference wins really don’t count for much.

Next week: vs Pitt (Pitt has to win this game, or Narduzzi’s days are sure to be near the end.)

Prognosis: More balance restored to the universe, as the Yellowjackets have no sting left.

3. Kansas (2-5)

            Having watched Bottom Ten teams win all day, Texas proceeded to soil themselves in fear, barely hanging on for a victory. Les Miles has this crew motivated, which is no small feat considering how little talent there is in Lawrence. On a different week, the Jayhawks might have moved up in the rankings.

Next week: vs Texas Tech (We shall see just how far the Red Raiders have fallen.)

Prognosis: Little left in the tank for Kansas, as Texas Tech will pull out a win.

2. Northwestern (1-5)

            I suppose a bad year in Evanston was bound to happen at some point. It is to Pat Fitzgerald’s credit that it is a legitimate surprise that the ‘Cats are this terrible.

Next week: vs Iowa (The Hawkeyes still have eyes for the Big Ten West title after Wisconsin’s loss last week to Illinois.)

Prognosis:Northwestern publicly thanks outgoing commissioner Jim Delany for bringing Rutgers into the B1G.

1.  Rutgers (1-6)

            In an uncertain world, let us give thanks for Rutgers. You can set your watch to the Knights’ consistent crappiness. In its last four games, Rutgers has lost by a combined score of 177-14. Three of those games were against Indiana, Maryland, and Minnesota. You know, traditional B1G powers.

Next week: vs Liberty (The Flames are licking their chops to add a B1G win to their resume.)

Prognosis: Even against a newish FBS team, a win for Rutgers would be pretty surprising.

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.

Liberty 59, Maine 44

            Power five teams were all playing in conference last week, so we need to dip into the Group of Five to find our shaming game of the week. Liberty now has wins over Hampton and Maine. If they make a bowl, it will be the final proof that there are WAAAYYY too many bowl games, if such proof were even needed.