Which means hot off the presses. My new rankings are done, and sadly the three teams that stood 0-2, and I made excuses for them- good ones I thought- went out and got beat today, and thus will be out. That starts with former #1 and defending champ Eastern Washington who lost to Montana 17-14. A decent loss to a good team, sealed when QB Bo Levi Mitchell threw a pick with 40 ticks left, his second of the game. Then we have Villanova, who has been so good for so long, I couldn't make myself believe they were really that bad- until they lost to Monmouth 20-9. They had just pulled back to a 4 point game with a safety and the ball, but went 3-and-out inside the 2 minute mark. They punted, and with 1:12 left Monmouth sealed it with a 44-yd run. The third was Stony Brook, who seemingly survived their first two losses in Big Boy Games, only to blow a 17-7 lead in the 3rd quarter against Ivy Leaguer Brown to lose 21-20.
So Georgia Southern and Wofford, who watched the games on TV, stayed 1 and 2. App State stayed at 3 after pounding hapless Savannah St. 41-6. Here comes my controversial call, though: I leapfrogged Montana to #4 after the win over EWU; held Montana State to 5th despite a 43-7 win - because it was against cupcake Minot State-; and dropped William AND Mary to #6 despite their win, 13-10 over Division II #23 New Haven- because, ranked or not, a cupcake is a cupcake, and I'm still wondering if W&M has any offense once they play the powerhouses of the CAA.
Richmond dumped VMI 34-19 to go to 3-0 and take my 7th spot. I moved Jacksonville State up one to #8 despite another lackluster performance, 37-21 over Georgia St. Moving into the top ten are 2 of the other bye weekers- New Hampshire in 9th and Northern Iowa in 10th. Lehigh moved up to 11th after a 34-22 win over Princeton; Chattanooga to 12 after beating tough Eastern Kentucky 21-14. JMU, 16th going in, played then #11 Liberty; James Madison got a FG with :02 left to win 27-24. JMU moves up to 13, while Liberty drops to 15th. Rocketing up to take #14 is Delaware, who beat cupcake rival Delaware State 45-0.
Two more layabouts this week, North Dakota State and Southern Illinois, move up to 16 and 17 respectively. I held South Carolina State at 18 despite losing their BBG to Indiana 38-21. After watching UMass take out a tough URI team 36-27, I relented and ranked them at 19. SF Austin drops to 20 after getting beat in their BBG by #19 Baylor 48-0 in a game ended by lightning after three quarters. Western Carolina spent what might be their last week in the top 25 at 21; ODU moves up to 22 with a tough Hampton team 45-42. Coming in for the first time at 23 is Sam Houston State, who played an "also getting votes" Central Arkansas team and flattening them 31-10. Bethune Cookman was the last of the day-off teams and hold at 24; Indiana St. takes the last available decision after winning their BBG over (allegedly) FBS team Western Kentucky 44-16.
When I shut down the scoreboard, South Dakota, who everyone loved after their win over EWU, had won, but against cupcake NW Oklahoma State, 48-10; Sacremento State, who started out so promisingly with that win over Oregon State, was getting pasted by a conference foe; and for all those Ivy Leaguers that thought Penn was going to repeat, they were abbreviated by Lafayette 37-12. And thus, all missed their chance to enter my rankings.
Next week, nobody is off. We have 3 more big boy games- #16 N. Dakota State vs Minnesota; #19 UMass against neighborhood rival Boston College; and #23 Sam Houston faces a New Mexico team that got schmeared by Texas Tech today. One team gets a cupcake- #18 S. Carolina St. gets their turn with Delaware St. Battles among the ranked teams include #21 Western Carolina vs #1 Georgia Southern; #12 Chattanooga draws #3 App State; #6 Wm. & Mary better wake up that offense NOW, because #13 JMU is coming to town; #7 Richmond and #9 UNH duke it out; #14 Delaware and #22 ODU face off; and #15 Liberty goes from ranked JMU to #11 Lehigh. Other matches include Wofford getting off easy against Samford; Montana gets reeling Sacremento St.; Montana St. has their turn with newly-unranked EWU; J'ville St. gets Eastern Illinois, while Northern Iowa gets Western Illinois; Southern Illinois chimes in against Missouri St.; SFA gets state rival Texas St.; Indiana St. goes up against conference rival Youngstown St.; and B-C gets a Thursday game with Hampton.