This week’s Thursday post is going to be a little more all over the place than ones in the past. Maybe this structure will come back, maybe it’ll stay, who knows. That’s the beauty of these posts!
What is going to stay, I think, is my weekly Top 25. I made one last week for fun that I didn’t post, so why not just include them each Thursday?
So, here’s the one I made last week, meaning prior to the events of the previous weekend. The number in the parentheses is the move that the team made from my rankings from the week before.
1.) Alabama (-)
2.) Georgia (-)
3.) Ohio State (+2)
4.) Oklahoma (-)
5.) Cincinnati (+1)
6.) Texas A&M (+2)
7.) Clemson (-4)
8.) Oregon (+1)
9.) Coastal Carolina (+2)
10.) Iowa (+9)
11.) Iowa State (-4)
12.) Florida (+2)
13.) Notre Dame (+5)
14.) Ole Miss (+6)
15.) USC (+1)
16.) Penn State (+6)
17.) UCLA (NEW)
18.) Texas (+7)
19.) Arizona State (+2)
20.) NC State (+4)
21.) Michigan (NEW)
22.) Virginia Tech (NEW)
23.) UCF (NEW)
24.) Wisconsin (-12)
25.) Charlotte (NEW)
Small notes from this before I get into the new one:
I wanted to move Clemson down further because an 0-1 team shouldn’t be in the top 10, but no one really earned the spot.
Iowa makes the biggest move because they beat the living hell out of Indiana and I didn’t see that coming. The Ole Miss, UCLA and Texas hype was all very real, while Penn State beat a ranked team, so I had to.
Charlotte at 25 is probably a bad pick, I can admit that. But some lovely unnamed coach had the same thing in his Coaches Poll, so I am now excused to do the same. I make the rules over here.
Now, the new, updated Top 25:
1.) Alabama (-)
2.) Georgia (-)
3.) Oklahoma (+1)
4.) Cincinnati (+1)
5.) Oregon (+3)
6.) Iowa (+4)
7.) Texas A&M (-1)
8.) Coastal Carolina (+1)
9.) Clemson (-2)
10.) Ole Miss (+4)
11.) Ohio State (-8)
12.) Florida (-)
13.) Penn State (+3)
14.) Notre Dame (-1)
15.) UCLA (+2)
16.) Arizona State (+3)
17.) Michigan (+4)
18.) Iowa State (-7)
19.) Virginia Tech (+3)
20.) Arkansas (NEW)
21.) UCF (+2)
22.) BYU (NEW)
23.) Wisconsin (+1)
24.) North Carolina (NEW)
25.) Charlotte (-)
And some notes:
Top two remain the same, while Oklahoma and Cincinnati just barely hold off Oregon and Iowa after two very impressive wins. The Ducks I saw as a possibility to get here, but credit to the Hawkeyes, who I thought were much more likely to be 0-2 than 2-0 at this point in the season.
Yeah Clemson won by a million, but Texas A&M held on for a hard-fought battle with a backup quarterback and Coastal Carolina won big again. Those teams are undefeated, and they proved enough to me to have them above the Tigers.
We are full speed ahead with Ole Miss hype, folks. I love this team and it has earned a top 10 spot for now.
Ohio State, man. The Buckeyes have a real strong offense, but they got double battered and deep fried by what seems to be a remarkably average Oregon offense. This defense is miserable compared to the talent it possesses, and until that is proven to get fixed, this is not a top 10 team in my eyes.
Michigan has looked really good through two games, but the Wolverines sort of just fell into this ranking. It should be another cakewalk this week, but apparently that Northern Illinois team could give some fits, and it would be very Michigan to have the cracks start to show up here.
Iowa State got crunched by the Iowa trash compactor, it happens. But the Cyclones have now looked good in zero of their games so far, so the free fall was necessary.
Texas is back folks. The Longhorns are starting a new quarterback this week after getting beaten senseless by Arkansas, who is new to the list at No. 20. Go Hogs.
Shoutout to BYU, who lost almost every important player this offseason and still pulled off an upset win over Utah. Are we in the early stages of Coach of the Year Kalani Sitake?
Charlotte won, of course it is staying in the top 25. I am no coward.
Cincinnati’s First Test
As a fan of seeing anything different happen, I am begging for an undefeated Cincinnati team that should give the College Football Playoff committee something to think about at the end of the year.
The reason the Bearcats are different than previous UCF teams or, well, last year’s Cincinnati team, because of their non-conference schedule. Cincy will play Indiana and Notre Dame within these next three weeks, and while the latter might be the more important one, this Bearcats-Hoosiers game has excited me all offseason.
It did excite me more when I thought Indiana was going to be really good, though. The Hoosiers were a downright catastrophe against Iowa, and a big win over a bad Idaho team does nothing to bring me back. Cincinnati’s defense is, in my eyes, as good as Iowa’s which should mean bad news for the Hoosiers once again.
More bad news for Indiana: Cincinnati has a great quarterback and a much better offense than the Hawkeyes. I am thinking this will be a big Cincy win, and it should immediately catapult the Bearcats into the top five of more than my poll.
Clay Helton was fired after a handful of seasons where he should have been kicked out, but he was so nice the program let him give it another go.
USC was once one of the highest-sought jobs in the country, and the job search for this vacancy has already included big names. Three have caught my eye, all of which make sense to me for different reasons.
Urban Meyer - Let’s get this one out of the way. Urban Meyer looks to be fulfilling the most obvious prophecy imaginable: The hard ass college coach who owes almost all of his success to recruiting can’t make it in the NFL. I know it was one game, but getting blown out by the team that was ranked last by pretty much every major publication certainly set the tone.
Meyer is not built for this, and it would only make sense for him to return to college to try and fix a major program that needs fixing. He has Pac-12 experience and I think USC is the type of job he would leave for.
Of course, Meyer has already denied that he would leave for any job, so I guess that’s that. Meyer has certainly never lied about anything, especially not about leaving a head coaching position.
James Franklin - The true neutral choice in the matter. Penn State head coach James Franklin has had a good run with the Nittany Lions, but a move to the West Coast could be the change of scenery that both programs need.
This would have been a no-brainer for me after the 2020 season. The Nittany Lions had a sub-.500 season and had a terrible incoming recruiting class. It seemed like Franklin was ready to go. But now, Penn State is 2-0 and has the current No. 1 overall class for 2022.
Still, Franklin has not really denied the rumors at this point and is more so saying that he doesn’t want them to be a distraction for Penn State’s game against Auburn this weekend. I could very much see this being the move USC ultimately makes.
Eric Bieniemy - Oh Adam Schefter, thank you for putting this out to the world.
This is my favorite pick of the bunch by far. Eric Bieniemy should be an NFL head coach right now, and there are very few reasons that make sense to why he is not besides not-all-that-subtle racism.
But I would certainly love to see Bieniemy be a head coach anywhere, and I think he would turn USC back into a true force of a program. He has been a brilliant offensive mind at Kansas City, has college coaching experience in the Pac-12 no less from his time at Colorado and should be able to recruit with the pitch of being one of the main guys who turned Patrick Mahomes into a god. A Super Bowl ring might help, too.
Now, Bieniemy did say on Thursday that he is not all that interested.
“If USC reached out to me right now, my answer would be 'I am preparing for this team to play against the Baltimore Ravens.' That's how I roll,” he said. “My job is to make sure that we're ready to play a complete, sound, 60-minute football game so that we can come out and win the game.''
But that doesn’t sound like a full out rejection to me, so I will keep my hopes up. Bieniemy is a mastermind OC who has learned under one of the best NFL head coaches in Andy Reid. While he no doubt deserves to be a head coach at the highest level, I would selfishly take him dominating at the college level instead.
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