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What ESPN’s Preseason Football Power Index Says About The G5 in 2023

Prediction time from the “Worldwide Leader”

NCAA Football: Cotton Bowl-Tulane at Southern California Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve got a sign that the 2023 college football season is on its way.

About halfway through the month of April, with many programs wrapping up their spring regimen, ESPN has released the 2023 preseason edition of their Football Power Index.

ESPN describes their Football Power Index (FPI)as follows:

“FPI is our season-long ratings and projections system. In the preseason it relies on past performance on offense and defense, returning and transfer production and past recruiting data for players on the roster to form a rating”

The FPI predicts what a team’s final record will be as well as provides a percentage for how likely a team is to reach six wins, win their division, and win their conference, as well as make and win the college football playoff.

It’s a lot of data and percentages to sort through, so allow me to save you the time of finding the most important G5 nuggets from the data set. Enjoy.

Top 5 G5 Teams

SMU #49, Tulane #55, Boise State #56, Memphis #58, UTSA #61

The lowest-ranked Power Five team was Colorado at #95.


Highest-Ranking Team: SMU #49

Nine AAC teams fall within the top 100. The Mustangs were given a 98.4% probability to reach six wins with a 41.7% probability of winning the league. Defending league champs Tulane were given a 20.3% probability to win the league. The AAC landed nine teams within the top 100. Each of those teams was given at least a 60% probability to reach six wins.

The lowest-ranked team from the AAC is Charlotte at #118. The 49ers were given a 16.2% probability to reach six wins.

Conference USA

Highest-Ranking Team: Western Kentucky #88

WKU and newcomer Liberty were the only two C-USA teams in the top 100. The Flames came in at #97 Both teams were given at least a 93% probability of reaching a bowl game. The Tops were given a 39.8% chance of winning the league while Liberty received a 23.4% chance of winning the league.

FIU and New Mexico State were the two lowest-ranked teams at #129 and #130, respectively. FIU were given a 21.9% probability to reach six wins and New Mexico State were given a 42.1% chance.

RELATED: FIU Football: DeMarcus Van Dyke Will Be Hired as Cornerbacks Coach


Highest-Ranking Team: Notre Dame #9

Second-Highest-Ranking Team: Army #102

UConn ranked #119 and UMass came in at #133. The Minutemen were the lowest ranked team in all of FBS.


Highest Ranking Team: Toledo #81

The Rockets were given a 95.8% probability of making a bowl game with a 44.1% chance to win their division and a 27.6% chance to win the league.

Ohio and Miami came in at #94 and #96, respectively. Both were given at least an 80% chance to make a bowl game. Both were given below a 20% chance to win the league.

Akron was the lowest-ranked MAC team at #128 The Zips received a 14.1% chance to make it to six wins.

Mountain West

Highest Ranking Team: Boise State #56

Six Mountain West teams were ranked in the top 100. The Broncos received a 94.6% chance to reach bowl eligibility and a 45.9% chance to win the conference. The league championship matchup was projected to be Boise State vs Fresno State. The Broncos were given a 62.6% chance to win the Mountain Division and the Bulldogs were given a 39.4% chance to win the West Division.

New Mexico was the lowest-ranked team from the Mountain West at #126 with a 27.1% chance to reach six wins.

Sun Belt

Highest Ranking Team: Marshall #66

The SBC had 11 teams in the top 100. The Thundering Herd were given an 87.3% probability to reach six wins and a 19% probability to win the league. Troy were given a 21.3% chance to win the league while coming in at #69 overall.

ULM were the lowest-ranked Sun Belt team at #127 while being given a 6.2% probability of reaching six wins.