Rewind with me for a second back to those dark days in mid-summer when it seemed like football would never arrive. Sure you basketball nuts like me had the NBA playoffs, and baseball is still attractive to certain people, and yeah the golf majors are a fun weekend, and the Women’s World Cup was big for even non-soccer fans; but still, there was no football and something felt missing in our lives.
That’s when I decided to embark on an insane mission to preview every FBS football team. Now, to be honest, I wasn’t really anticipating much viewership until I started coming to the power five conferences in my previews, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. The Group of Five conferences turned out in great numbers to read my amateur previews, which prompted this new weekly segment. Every week of the season, I will release a top ten for the Group of Five conference teams, which becomes essentially a race for that automatic Group of Five bid. So, without further ado, I proudly present to you week one of “The (Not So) Little Guys”.
10. Tulsa Golden Hurricane: (1-0) (LW: Beat Florida Atlantic 47-44 OT)
9. Old Dominion Monarchs: (1-0) (LW: Beat Eastern Michigan 38-34)
8. Charlotte 49ers: (1-0) (LW: Beat Georgia State 23-20)
Now it’s time for me to take my first pause in the rankings. Each week, I will take a break three to four times to highlight a team whose performance is particularly noteworthy. The 49ers certainly fit that mold in week one, as they won their first game as an FBS team on Friday. The win was also their first ever over an FBS opponent. Charlotte kicked off its FBS career with a bizarre scoop and score fumble (seen above) and closed the game hanging on for dear life, but for now a win is a win. Wide receiver Austin Duke showed up big to help the Niners catching seven passes for 95 yards and a touchdown.
7. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers: (1-0) (LW: Beat Vanderbilt 14-12)
6. Boise State Broncos: (1-0) (LW: Beat Washington 16-13)
5. Northern Illinois Huskies: (1-0) (LW: Beat UNLV 28-20)
4. Marshall Thundering Herd: (1-0) (LW: Beat Purdue 41-31)
Marshall has been on a tear recently under coach John “Doc” Holliday. However, many felt that the Thundering Herd might come back to earth some after the loss of prolific quarterback Rakeem Cato. Tiquan Lang ensured that Marshall wasn’t going to begin its slide just yet, returning not one, but two interceptions for touchdowns in the win over Purdue. That win also happens to be Marshall’s first ever win over a Big Ten team marking another milestone for this program. For the record, I was never off the Marshall bandwagon, and fully expect them to continue to make appearances in “The (Not So) Little Guys”.
3. Hawaii Rainbow Warriors: (1-0) (LW: Beat Colorado 28-20)
2. Ohio Bobcats: (1-0) (LW: Beat Idaho 45-28)
1. Temple Owls: (1-0) (LW: Beat Penn State 27-10)
Temple teamed up with Northwestern in an attempt to ruin office pools all around the country on Saturday. As anyone familiar with this program could have guessed, the Owls did it with defense sacking Christian Hackenberg ten times on the day and giving up fewer than 200 yards of total offense. Jahad Thomas also played his part on offense rushing for 135 yards and two touchdowns. This was a very impressive win for a dangerous Temple team, and it will be interesting to see if they can keep on winning. One thing’s for sure, this defense is certainly ferocious enough to make that happen.
YouTube video courtesy of Fox Sports