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Posts Tagged ‘MAC’

How the Conferences Rank, 1-12: Week 4

As an accompanying post to today’s re-ranking, here’s the entire F.B.S. conference breakdown in terms of average P.S.R. 1-124 ranking. It’s not entirely fair to include the Independent programs among the true conferences, seeing that there’s only four Independent teams, but it does give a slight slice-of-life taste of where that quartet stands in the big picture. The listings include the average ranking, highest team ranking and number of teams in the top 25 in parentheses. Without further ado:

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    How the Conferences Rank, 1-12: Week 3

    As an accompanying post to today’s re-ranking, here’s the entire F.B.S. conference breakdown in terms of average P.S.R. 1-124 ranking. It’s not entirely fair to include the Independent programs among the true conferences, seeing that there’s only four Independent teams, but it does give a slight slice-of-life taste of where that quartet stands in the big picture. The listings include the average ranking, highest team ranking and number of teams in the top 25 in parentheses. Without further ado:

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      How the Conferences Rank, 1-12: Week 2

      As an accompanying post to today’s re-ranking, here’s the entire F.B.S. conference breakdown in terms of average P.S.R. 1-124 ranking. It’s not entirely fair to include the Independent programs among the true conferences, seeing that there’s only four independent teams, but it does give a slight slice-of-life taste of where that quartet stands in the big picture. The listings include the average ranking, highest team ranking and number of teams in the top 25 in parentheses. Without further ado:

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        No. 26: Ohio

        Only one significant hurdle remains to be passed, and no, it’s not a national championship. There’s no amount of beer in Athens — though there’s a lot of beer, and a lot of beer drinking, in Athens — that could convince even the most optimistic Ohio fan that a national title lies in the making. But consider what Ohio has achieved over the last three seasons: not just three bowl bids but a bowl win, not just one MAC East title but two, not just one eight-win season but three, and last season, the program’s first 10-win season since 1968 – also the year of the program’s last MAC title. What’s missing, of course, is that elusive conference crown; the Bobcats have been many things under Frank Solich, but this program’s inability to seal the deal in December looms large over all of its recent success. It’s time to put an end to this, Ohio, and it’s time to do it in style.

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          No. 54: Northern Illinois

          Last year’s team was not quite as good as the 2010 version, the last piloted by Jerry Kill, but it matched that team in the one place it counts: 11 wins. In doing so, Northern Illinois joined a select upper slice of programs to have won at least 11 games in each of the last two years – joining Virginia Tech, Oklahoma State, Michigan State, T.C.U., Boise State, Oregon, Stanford, L.S.U. and Alabama. And of those 11, the Huskies are one of two to have achieved this feat with two different coaches, joining the Cardinal. N.I.U. is also one of only two teams to have won 11 games in each of the last two years while notching an A.P.R. score of higher than 980, joining Boise State. You can tweak statistics to suit your purpose, but no matter how you cut it, one thing is clear: the Huskies’ play over the last two years placed this program in some very elite company.

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            No. 57: Toledo

            It was now or never for Toledo under Tim Beckman, though we only had a sneaking suspicion at the time. But the signs were there, even as early as last season’s opening month. On Sept. 10, Beckman led the Rockets into Columbus to take on Ohio State, which was in the market for a new head coach, and came within 20 yards of notching a historic upset. There’s no better way to make an impression than to take your ragamuffin bunch into a national power’s house and win, and even if the Rockets came close but failed, Beckman’s stock took a significant jump. From that time forward — as long as Toledo reached its massive potential — the program was merely counting down the days until it entered a coaching search of its own. That day came on Dec. 9, when Illinois tabbed Beckman to reverse its fortunes as Ron Zook’s successor. From there, Toledo was left with two choices: continuity or change. Wisely, the Rockets went with more of the same.

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              No. 62: Western Michigan

              The magic number is 33. Since replacing Gary Darnell in 2005, Bill Cubit has lost only three games — a 60-57 loss to Ball State in 2005; a 39-38 loss to Akron in 2007, thanks to an epic special teams meltdown; and last year’s loss to Toledo — when scoring 33 or more points; overall, Western Michigan has gone 28-3 in such games. In all other games, in contrast, the Cubit-led Broncos are 19-36. Hence Cubit’s game of musical chairs at defensive coordinator: Western Michigan has been through five coordinators over the last seven years. Of the five, only Scott Shafer carried his weight — even if Bill Miller turned one season under Cubit into the coordinator job at Louisville. Steve Morrison lasted two years before ceding way to former Hofstra head coach Dave Cohen, who likewise lasted two years, through last season, before being replaced by former safeties coach Rich Nagy. For Cubit’s sake, W.M.U. hopes that the fifth time is the charm.

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                No. 70: Bowling Green

                For this exercise, take out anyone associated with Notre Dame and include only those schools currently playing on the F.B.S. level. Under these criteria, which head coach holds the highest winning percentage in college football history? It’s not Barry Switzer, who comes in second; it’s not Tom Osborne, who’s third; it’s not Bud Wilkinson, who comes in seventh. It’s Doyt Perry of Bowling Green – you know him as the guy whose name graces the Falcons’ stadium. Perry lost 11 games over a decade at Bowling Green, from 1955-64, never losing more than two games in a single season, and was such an overwhelming success that it took the university only two years following Perry’s retirement to rename the stadium in his honor. I’m going to guess that you didn’t know that – though technically, Perry’s winning percentage comes in third all-time behind Knute Rockne and Frank Leahy.
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                  The Countdown

                  A bottom-to-top assessment of the F.B.S. landscape heading into the 2012 season.