Plenty of change everywhere in the conference, except for the top and bottom spots. UCF keeps the top spot, but they might have some competition in the future. Underdog wins resulted in some major changes this week.
1. UCF (8-0)
It’s a good thing that McKenzie Milton and the offense showed up, because the defense didn’t do them many favors. Temple scored 40 points on 670 yards against the Knights defense, but Milton and the offense scored 52 to prevent the upset at home.
2. Cincinnati (8-1)
Navy couldn’t solve the Bearcats defense, and couldn’t get on the scoreboard. Cortez Broughton added to his case for defensive player of the year, and led Cincinnati with 10 tackles. This team continues to mature as the season goes on, and a conference championship may be in store if they keep it up.
3. Houston (7-2)
A loss to SMU was tough, but not enough to drop them farther in the rankings. They still remain atop the AAC West, but cannot afford another loss if they want to make the conference championship game. Ed Oliver sat out yet another game, so his health will be a concern going forward.
4. SMU (4-5)
Ben Hicks is back, folks! The junior completed 28 of his 43 passes for 318 yards and four touchdowns against Houston on Saturday, sparking the Mustangs 45-31 win. SMU is now one game behind the Cougars for the AAC West crown, but need to hope that Houston loses another game.
5. Memphis (5-4)
Darrell Henderson’s return was a success, and the Tigers offense was back to being elite. The only problem is their defense couldn’t stop Holton Ahlers (449 yards, three touchdowns passing) or Trevon Brown (193 yards, two touchdowns receiving).
6. Temple (4-5)
Losing to UCF isn’t a bad thing, especially when you outgain them. It’s just tough to win football games when you give up 630 yards and 52 points.
7. Tulane (4-5)
It felt like the Green Wave had a good chance to beat USF last year, but they couldn’t quite pull off the upset. This year, they left no doubt, stunning the Bulls 41-15.
8. USF (7-2)
This may be a talented team, but that hasn’t translated to the field against quality competition. It’s beginning to reflect in their record. Is Charlie Strong on the hot seat?
9. Tulsa (2-7)
For once this year, Tulsa got to beat up on someone instead of the other way around. The Golden Hurricane rushed for 470 yards against UConn, led by Shamari Brooks’ 151 yards. Seth Boomer had his first good game, passing for four touchdowns and adding a rushing touchdown as well.
10. ECU (2-6)
Holton Ahlers is the quarterback of the future for this program, and he’s most likely glad that Trevon Brown is on his team for the rest of the year. Brown is the best player in the conference, and Ahlers continues to justify the hype surrounding him in the preseason.
11. Navy (2-7)
We wondered if Zach Abey would take over, and he did. It didn’t help Navy, as they only rushed for 124 yards against Cincinnati. It will be the first time that the Midshipmen won’t play in a bowl game since 2011, and there’s quite a bit that needs to be addressed.
12. David Pindell (382 total yards, two touchdowns)
If the Huskies can figure out a way to play average defense, watch out. Pindell is one of the most explosive quarterback in the conference, but he doesn’t get a chance to translate that into wins.