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AAC Power Rankings Week 4

Number of games played: 4. Number of games canceled: 3. Putting together rankings is going to be tricky all year.

NCAA Football: Central Florida at East Carolina James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

It’s tough to gauge the AAC right now. Sure, UCF and Cincinnati are easily the top two teams, but SMU’s sneaking up on them, and Memphis hasn’t played since they beat Arkansas State. Oh and Temple and Houston have yet to play a game. It feels like we remind ourselves that this year is going to be weird, but it’s still a surprise every week. The nice thing about fewer games means that we can focus on a few teams more closely, and that means we get to enjoy explosive offenses that the conference has to offer even more.

1. UCF (2-0)

The Knights took care of business, answering ECU’s opening drive with 41 unanswered points on their way to a 51-28 win. Dillon Gabriel threw for over 400 yards with four touchdowns, with Marlon Williams and Jaylon Robinson leading the way with Tre Nixon out.

2. Cincinnati (2-0)

Army’s triple option attack had little effect on the Bearcats defense, who yielded just three points (the other seven came on a turnover by Cincinnati’s offense). As the co-favorite to win the conference, Cincinnati’s proved it can pay attention to the details of facing a unique offense, which bodes well for their future matchups against conference competition.

3. SMU (3-0)

It was a short day for Shane Buechele and the starters, but they were efficient in their brief time on the field. SMU jumped out to an early lead, and never looked back on their way to a 50-7 win over Stephen F. Austin.

4. Memphis (1-0)

A rematch from last year’s epic College Game Day game against SMU looms next weekend, assuming the Tigers can participate. Memphis is another team that should compete for the conference title, and next week’s game is a big opportunity for them to do just that.

5. Navy (1-1)

A week off might have been what the Midshipmen needed after an emotional comeback win over Tulane last week. We’re still not sure what to make of Navy, but luckily we have plenty of season to figure that out.

NCAA Football: Tulane at Southern Mississippi Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

6. Tulane (2-1)

Sorry, Southern Miss, but Tulane had some frustrations they needed to take out on someone. After blowing a 24-point lead to Navy the week before, the Green Wave made sure a comeback couldn’t happen this week. Behind Cameron Carroll’s 163 yards and three touchdowns on the ground, Tulane turned a 24-21 halftime lead into a 66-24 win Saturday.

7. ECU (0-1)

Holton Ahlers is good, make no mistake about that. But beating UCF takes more than just one guy. The Pirates defense has some major flaws to fix, but the offense is in good hands as long as they can find a running game.

8. Tulsa (0-1)

Tulsa’s chance to get in the win column was thwarted by COVID, as their game with Arkansas State was canceled. The Golden Hurricane are another team that appears to be solid, but we’re just waiting to get a few more games on their resume before we can judge what they’re about this year.

9. USF (1-1)

The Bulls and FAU were supposed to play this weekend as well, but they ran into the same issue as Tulas. This was one of the more intriguing matchups of the weekend, but we’ll never know how it would turn out. Jeff Scott’s squad was hoping to bounce back after a beating at the hands of Notre Dame last weekend.

Not Ranked Yet

Temple: I almost forgot about Temple, and I might do it again next week as they’re not schedule to play until October 10th when they head to Annapolis to face Navy.

Houston: The Coogs had now seen five games on their schedule get canceled, including this week’s matchup against North Texas. I joked Houston should wait to join the Big Ten or Mountain West when they start, but it might not be very funny if games continue to get canceled for this team.