Well, that was a blast! BYU followed up Utah's thumping of 'Bama in the Sugar Bowl to end last season by beating Oklahoma (even though, as people will point out, OU only had their Heisman-caliber QB for 1 half and was without their star TE... and blah blah blah) and Colorado State handled Colorado on the road to really help the MWC out. Of course, SDSU & UNM falling ugly to UCLA & Texas A&M (respectively) didn't help matters, and nor did Wyoming just surviving Weber State, but you've gotta take what you can get.
And with Week 1 over, it's time for a Power Ranking...
Note #1: I'm a big fan of "resume ranking"... aka, you get ranked based on what you've done, not what you might do in the future.)
Note #2: This is not a "who's the best team" ranking. It's a "who'd you beat and how'd you beat them" ranking.
- BYU- Fine, they barely beat a injured OU team. Whatever. In the end, they just beat the #3 team in the nation (premature rankings suck, by the way)... and did it in impressive fashion. And by impressive, I mean that they struggled to run the ball... and got huge plays when they needed them. Max Hall was impressive down the stretch there to lead the Cougars. Up next: @ Tulane (0-1)
Colorado State- Sure, the Buffaloes made a late charge. But that's only after half-time saw the Rams up 20-6 on the road, with the fans booing their own Buffaloes off the field. They held the Buffs to 29 rushing yards on 21 carries, while getting a huge day on the ground from Leonard Mason, and got some solid QB play as well (despite the 2 interceptions). Up next: Weber State (0-1)
- Utah- Would I rank Utah behind CSU in an actual ranking in terms of how good I think they are? No. Never. And that's not just me as a biased fan speaking. But quite simply, beating Colorado is much more impressive than beating Utah State. The Utes had some early struggles, including giving up the 96 yard TD run, but the defense stepped up big time in the 2nd half, holding the Aggies scoreless. Cain looked impressive, and Asiata just hammered the Aggies. Up next: @ San Jose State (0-1)
- Air Force- If you're going to play a D-II team, that's how you do it. The Falcons rolled up 576 yards (474 on the ground), scored at least 13 points in every quarter, and rolled to a 72-0 win. They had 299 yards at the half, and the starters were on the bench after that (helped by the 45-0 halftime lead). Of course, it's hard to judge exactly where your team is when you're dismantling a D-II team, which makes this coming week really important for the Falcons. Up next: @ Minnesota (1-0)
- TCU- While they didn't go the way of BYU (playing a top 5 team), they didn't stoop to the level of Florida (playing a D-II team that saw them favored by like 70) either. Instead, they took a bye... and saw their SOS take a hit anyways, when Virginia lost to D-II William & Mary. Up next: @ Virginia (0-1)
- UNLV- They weren't exactly up to the level of the Falcons, settling on a 38-3 win over Sacramento State. The Rebels racked up over 200 yards on the ground, and did the same through the air, using a 21 point 4th quarter to run away with the game. They did allow 3.6 ypc though, which can't be a good sign. And the fact that Sacramento State was in the game through the 3rd quarter has to be a bit worrisome (in fact, it was 10-3 until late in the 3rd quarter). Up next: Oregon State (1-0)
- Wyoming- Um... yeah. A win is a win, I guess. But when you only win by 7 against a D-II team (Weber State in this case)... and need 5 interceptions by the opposing QB to hang on, things aren't looking up. The Cowboys were implementing a new offensive look... a no-huddle spread offense... and did explode for 434 yards, but struggled to finish drives. Yeah, WSU is expected to be one of the better FCS teams, but even then... Wyoming needs to play better than that. Especially considering their next game. Wyoming was alternating QBs during the game... it'll be interesting to see what happens there as the season moves on. Up next: Texas (1-0)
- San Diego State- It started so well... the Aztecs, under new coach Brady Hoke, bolted to a 14-3 lead late in the 1st quarter. Unfortunately for them, the Bruins woke up after that, and ran away with a 33-14 win. Having QB Ryan Lindley throw 3 picks (all to the same guy, no less) certainly didn't help things, and the ground game (18 carries, 39 yards) is certainly worrisome. Especially when your QB is just 18-45 (with two 1st-quarter TDs and the aforementioned 3 interceptions). They'll look to rebound this coming week. Up next: Southern Utah (1-0)
- New Mexico- That was ugly. The Lobos didn't score a TD (4th consecutive opener in which that has been the case) and were generally unimpressive (to be nice) in Mike Locksley's head coaching debut as the Texas A&M Aggies steamrolled them in a 41-6 win. The Lobos were down 20-0 before finally getting on the board with 13 seconds left in the half on a FG, and added another FG in the 3rd quarter when down 27-3. Meanwhile, the Aggies passed for 361 yards and ran for 245 more in what was a sad display by the Lobos defense. And the Lobos ground game wasn't much better... 21 yards on 24 carries. And it doesn't get any easier this week. Up next: Tulsa (1-0)
The MWC went 2-2 against the "Big 6" last week, getting wins over Oklahoma & Colorado and suffering losses at the hands of UCLA and Texas A&M. They get a couple more chances this week, with TCU heading to Virginia, Air Force traveling to Minnesota, Oregon State coming to UNLV & Texas traveling up to Laramie to face the Cowboys (how'd they manage that?!). There's also another WAC game (Utah yet again, this time against San Jose State) and a couple other games against mid-majors (BYU at Tulane, Tulsa at New Mexico) and the seemingly mandatory games versus D-II teams (Weber State at Colorado State, Southern Utah at San Diego State).
While the MWC went a combined 6-2 last week (with 1 bye), it'll be hard pressed to have a similar record this week, with a couple of really tough BCS games and a tough game against a solid 'mid-major' as well.