College football’s return provided ups and downs for the AAC, and there weren’t a ton of surprises. Teams like ECU, Tulsa, and Houston lost, but showed potential in their struggles. SMU survived, and Navy showed they might bounce back. For our Power Rankings, we did everything based heavily on results. Anything that happened the year before doesn’t matter. So let’s take a look at how the teams stack up.
1. UCF (1-0)
Brandon Wimbush and the Knights took little time adjusting to each other, and the offense picked up where they left off last year. Florida A&M couldn’t stop UCF, but also couldn’t do anything against the Knights defense. UCF’s still the team to beat after their 62-0 win.
2. Memphis (1-0)
Mike Norvell still needs to figure out how to get his team to play better in the second half, but he saw something new Saturday. His defense played a big role in determining the outcome. Holding Ole Miss to just 173 total yards and 10 points was big, and could be a key as the season progresses.
3. Cincinnati (1-0)
Rinse and repeat was the formula for the Bearcats Thursday night. Play good defense and run the ball against UCLA. Desmond Ridder looked calm in the pocked all night, and the offense appears to be ready to take another step in its development. The Bearcats proved to be UCF’s top competition in the East.
4. Tulane (1-0)
Willie Fritz’s team appears to be on track to compete for the AAC West. Justin McMillan looked sharp, and the defense held FIU to just 14 points in the win. How good can this team be? We’ll get a good gauge of that next week against Auburn.
5. Houston (0-1)
No they didn’t win, but this team belongs in the top half of the rankings. Houston was dominated by Oklahoma, but showed promise. D’Eriq King and the offense will be electric again, and the defense will be improved.
6. Temple (1-0)
After last year, fans had every reason to worry about the Owls start to the 2019 season. Temple struggled last season against Buffalo and Villanova, but they made sure that wouldn’t happen again. Anthony Russo eclipsed 400 yards passing in the Owls 56-12 win over Bucknell.
7. SMU (1-0)
Shane Buchele’s ready for Sonny Dykes’ offense. Xavier Jones and Ke’Mon Freeman returned to form running the ball too. SMU was the underdog in this one, but found a way to pull out the 37-30 win against Arkansas State.
8. Navy (1-0)
Here’s something weird. Malcolm Perry was actually way better passing the football than running. Perry finished 6-for-9 for 103 yards while rushing 10 times for just 28 yards. Not what we were expecting. Navy dominated Holy Cross early and often for a 45-7 win.
9. ECU (0-1)
It wasn’t a great start, but nobody really expected them to win either. ECU’s offense must find a running game after producing just 41 total yards on the ground. NC State didn’t dominate offensively, but their defense did its part in the 34-6 Wolfpack win.
10. Tulsa (0-1)
If the Golden Hurricane didn’t hand Michigan State 25 points early, it might have been a different game. Tulsa’s offense couldn’t do anything against the Spartans though, so maybe not. Still, their defense played tough in the 28-7 loss. Corey Taylor might not want to do many interviews going forward either.
Tulsa RB Corey Taylor last week: "With the offensive line that we have, those are great guys, so 100 yards apiece (for Taylor and Shamari Brooks), at least, and five yards per carry is pretty reasonable.”— Barrett Sallee (@BarrettSallee) August 31, 2019
Tulsa today: -73 rushing yards
11. USF (0-1)
157 yards. 0 points. Turns out it’s tough to win games when you don’t score, and the Bulls looked awful in Week 1. Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor outgained and outscored USF by himself, and it was more than enough to win the game. Charlie Strong was in hot water before this game, and now it’s boiling.
12. UConn (1-0)
UCONN WON A LEGITIMATE AMERICAN FOOTBALL GAME!!!! Ok, so they struggled to beat Wagner, but still. In what will most likely be their only win, the Huskies didn’t give their fans much hope. Not that there was much to begin the season.