At College Sports Journal, we proudly present our this week’s Big Sky Conference Power Rankings for the week of 10/11
/2016. (Last week’s ranking in parenthesis.)
1. Eastern Washington (1) (5-1, 3-0)
Last week: Beat Northern Colorado at home 49-31,
This week: Bye
The Eagles offense is performing at a peak level with QB Gage Gubrud and WR Cooper Kupp leading the way. The EWU defense will need to step-up at some point however at some point if this team wants to go far into the playoffs.
2. Montana (2) (4-1, 1-1)
Last week: Beat Mississippi Valley State 67-7,
This week: vs. Sacramento State
The Grizzlies showed off their power in non-conference last weekend. They return to conference action this week, once again at home but the step-up in competition is not too much greater with the Hornets coming to Missoula.
3. North Dakota (3) (3-2, 2-0)
Last week: Beat Sacramento State 40-7 on the road
This week: vs. Southern Utah
No rust on the road last weekend for the Hawks as they returned with its third straight win. Things get tougher this weekend with the defending BSC champions in Southern Utah.
4. Cal Poly (4) (3-2, 1-1)
Last week: Bye
This week: @ Portland State
The Mustangs had the week off giving star fullback Joe Protheroe time to heal. He should be ready to play against the Vikings.
5. Southern Utah (6) (3-2, 2-1)
Last week: Beat UC Davis, 24-3 at home
This week: @ North Dakota
The T-Bird defense looked like its old self against Davis, but UND will provide a much tougher challenge. This Saturday’s match might just answer the question if SUU is a contender again this year.
6. Weber State (8) (3-2, 2-0)
Last week: Beat Portland State, 14-10 at home
This week: vs. Montana State
The Wildcats have won three in a row for the first time under head coach Jay Hill. All the wins have been close and none have been against the top teams in the conference, but wins are wins.
7. Northern Colorado (5) (3-2, 1-1)
Last week: Lost to Eastern Washington, 49-31 on the road
This week: @ UC Davis
The Bears gave the Eagles a game this past week but wasn’t enough against the top ranked BSC team. This week, the Bears have a very winnable game in Davis, California.
8. Northern Arizona (9) (2-4, 1-2)
Last week: Beat Montana State, 20-14 on the road
This week: vs. Idaho State
NAU finally has a Division I win—the first in five such games this year for the BSC preseason favorites. With the Bengals coming to Flagstaff on Saturday, the Lumberjacks shouldn’t have to wait long to get their second.
9. Portland State (7) (2-4, 1-2)
Last week: Lost to Weber State, 14-10 on the road
This week: vs. Cal Poly
This season would look a lot different if the Vikings could have converted on end of game red zone opportunities in their two conference losses. As stated before, the magic from 2015 hasn’t seemed to carryover to 2016.
10. Idaho State (11) (2-3, 1-1)
Last week: Bye
This week: @ Northern Arizona
The Bengals benefited from the bye week in these rankings in moving up a spot but will face a tough road test this week in Flagstaff.
11. UC Davis (10) (1-5, 0-3)
Last week: Lost to SUU, 24-3 on the road
This week: vs. Northern Colorado
Without starting quarterback Ben Scott, the Aggies offense was shut down. Without a true passing threat, the T-Birds were able to key in on the Davis running backs and the result wasn’t pretty. The Aggies will need a lot more points to keep up with the Bears surprisingly high-powered attack.
12. Sacramento State (12) (1-5, 1-2)
Last week: Lost to North Dakota, 40-7 at home
This week: @ Montana
The Hornets picked up their first win of the season two weeks ago against Montana State. UND seemed to put Sac State back in their place this past week.
13. Montana State (13) (2-4, 0-3)
Last week: Lost to NAU, 20-14 at home
This week: @ Weber State
Things have gone in the wrong direction so far in Bozeman. MSU used to be in the playoff hunt yearly but now might not make it out of the BSC basement.
Originally from LaMoure, North Dakota, Kent is a 1996 graduate of North Dakota State University. His prior writing experience is over 15 years having previously worked with D2football.com, I-AA.org, and College Sporting News before coming to College Sports Journal in 2016. His main focus is college football in the western half of the United States– the Big Sky Conference and Missouri Valley Football Conference within the Division I FCS. And in 2017, he began also to look at the FBS Group of Five conferences of the American Athletic, Conference USA, Mid-American, Mountain West, and Sun Belt.
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