For the first time in over two years, UCF is not the top ranked team in the Group of Five. Boise State now sits in the driver’s seat for the top spot and the New Year’s Six Bowl bid. The Broncos travel to independent BYU this week in their hopes to stay atop of the Sagarin Top 25 for the Group of Five.
The other undefeated teams in the G5 include Appalachian State and SMU. Both are at home this week against conference foes. The Mountaineers face Sun Belt foe Louisiana-Monroe, while the Mustangs host Temple.
Here are my picks for the Top 25 for the week.
1. Boise State (6-0) at BYU — The Broncos roll in this one and stay undefeated against the Cougars. Boise State 41 BYU 20
2. UCF (4-2) vs. East Carolina — UCF is still ranked high but with two losses, the chances of getting the best G5 spot is unlikely but the Knights win this one going away. UCF 42 ECU 21
3. Cincinnati (5-1) vs. Tulsa — The Bearcats lone loss was at Ohio State and could sneak into the discussion for the G5 top spot if the cards fall right. The Bearcats will handle the Golden Hurricane and get bowl eligible. Cincinnati 38 Tulsa 21
4. Appalachian State (5-0) vs. Louisiana-Monroe — The Mountaineers are coming off a big road win at Sun Belt West frontrunner Louisiana last week and will handle the other Louisiana school this week rather easily. App State 42 ULM 17
5. Memphis (5-1) vs. Tulane — This game against the Green Wave for the Tigers might be the best game of the week in the Group of Five. This one will go down to the wire but the home field helps the Tigers escape with the victory. Memphis 34 Tulane 31
6. SMU (6-0) vs. Temple — The Mustangs run their undefeated record against the giant slayer Owls (who have two P5 wins on their resume). This is another AAC game that should be tight but the Mustangs hold on to stay unblemished. SMU 31 Temple 27
7. Tulane (5-1) vs. Memphis — SEE ABOVE
8. Utah State (3-2) vs. Nevada — The Aggies have two P5 losses to Wake Forest and LSU. The Wolfpack have been very good in close games with two last second wins by field goals. This one, however, won’t be this close as the Aggies get back to its winning ways. Utah State 38 Nevada 20
9. Navy (4-1) vs. South Florida –The Midshipmen’s only blemish so far this season was a loss at Memphis. USF got back in the win column last week with a victory over BYU at home. Navy will get the option game going though in this game and win this one at home. Navy 31 USF 21
10. Air Force (4-2) at Hawai’i — The Falcons bounced back from a loss two weeks ago at Navy to blow out Fresno State last week. Hawai’i went to Boise State last week and challenged the Broncos for a while but went down late. With the USAFA option game and the Hawai’i passing game, this game will run the spectrum of offenses. The Falcons, however, have the stronger defense of the two and use that to win this game. Air Force 38 Hawai’i 27
11. San Diego State (5-1) at San Jose State — This has been a one-sided Mountain West California rivarly with SDSU typically winning in blow-out fashion. This year will be a much closer contest but the Aztecs are just too good on defense for the Spartans to handle. The Aztecs wins a tight one. SDSU 27 SJSU 21
12. Wyoming (4-2) vs. New Mexico — The Cowboys went to San Diego last week and played it tight but its offense couldn’t quite muster up enough in the fourth quarter to get the road victory. Wyoming gets the Lobos at home and will welcome an easier game and fairly easy win. Wyoming 31 New Mexico 16
13. Houston (2-4) at UConn — The Cougars have played one of the toughest schedules in the Group of Five and will welcome an easy game this week in AAC action. UH gets this one easy. Houston 49 UConn 20
14. Fresno State (3-3) — Defeated UNLV 56-27 Friday
15. Western Michigan (4-3) — BYE
16. Hawai’i (4-2) vs. Air Force — SEE ABOVE
17. Temple (5-1) at SMU — SEE ABOVE
18. Florida Atlantic (4-3) — Lost to Marshall 36-31 Friday
19. Toledo (4-2) at Ball State — The Rockets are coming off a suprising loss to Bowling Green last week, while the Cardinals have won two close games in MAC play. With this game in Muncie, the Cardinals edge the Rockets. Ball State 28 Toledo 24
20. Louisiana (5-2) — Defeated Arkansas State 37-20 Thursday
21. BYU (2-4) vs. Boise State — SEE ABOVE
22. Army West Point (3-3) at Georgia State — The Black Knights slumped in its loss last week at Western Kentucky. Another road game faces Army against Georgia State, who after beating the SEC’s Tennessee, have slumped to win just one of its last four games. The Black Knights will get back on track this week and get the win in Atlanta. Army 31 GSU 21
23. Southern Miss (4-2) at Louisiana Tech — The Golden Eagles showed its ability in the blowout of North Texas last week, while the Bulldogs have been winning everything outside of its road game at the Big 12’s Texas. This game is the game of the week in C-USA and will come down to the wire. The home field will be the edge for the Bulldogs. Louisiana Tech 32 Southern Miss 31
24. Louisiana Tech (5-1) vs. Southern Miss — SEE ABOVE
25. Tulsa (2-4) at Cincinnati — SEE ABOVE
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 is the 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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