The Weekend: SEC struggles, Big Upsets, Fan-I Rankings

Labor Day weekend fit the bill as the “best opening weekend in college football history”, complete with upsets, blowouts, dominant performances, and heroic performances. For football fans everywhere, this was a great weekend - except for those out in Southern California, Baton Rouge Louisiana or South Bend Indiana. Welcome back to The Weekend! 

Fan-I 25

  1. Alabama (1-0), W 52-6 #20 v .USC* 
  2. Clemson (1-0), W 19-13 @ v. Auburn 
  3. Florida State (1-0). W 45-34 v. #11 Ole Miss* 
  4. Michigan (1-0), W 63-3 v. Hawaii 
  5. Ohio State (1-0), W 77-10 v. Bowling Green 
  6. Houston (1-0), W 33-23 v. #3 Oklahoma* 
  7. Stanford (1-0), W 26-13 v. Kansas State 
  8. Tennessee (1-0), W 20-13 OT v. Appalachian State 
  9. Oklahoma (0-1), L 23-33 v. #15 Houston* 
  10. Michigan State (1-0), W 28-13 v. Furman 
  11. TCU (1-0), W 59-41 v. South Dakota State 
  12. Ole Miss (0-1), L 34-45 v. #4 Florida State* 
  13. LSU (0-1), L 14-16 v. Wisconsin* 
  14. Washington (1-0), W v. 48-13 Rutgers 
  15. Georgia (1-0), W 33-24 v. #22 North Carolina* 
  16. Iowa (1-0), W 45-21 v. Miami (OH) 
  17. Louisville (1-0), W 70-14 v. Charlotte 
  18. Notre Dame (0-1), L 47-50 2OT @ v. Texas 
  19. Oklahoma State (1-0), W 61-7 v. Southeastern Louisiana 
  20. Baylor (1-0), W 55-7 v. Northwestern State 
  21. Oregon (1-0), W 53-28 v. UC-Davis 
  22. Florida (1-0), W 24-7 v. UMass 
  23. Texas (1-0), W 50-47 2OT v. #10 Notre Dame 
  24. Wisconsin (1-0), W 16-14 v. #5 LSU* 
  25. Texas A&M (1-0), 31-24 OT v. #16 UCLA 

*indicates neutral site game

  • This is the first set of Fan-I 25 rankings. We like to create our first set of rankings after the first week because pre-season rankings doesn't hold much weight. We base our first set of rankings off of the AP preseason poll but that’s the only time throughout the season that we use their rankings as a reference. 
  • The top 4 is split between 4 different conferences, Pac-12 being left out. Two teams in the top 5 suffered losses which helped the Noles and Michigan start high in the rankings. If this is the final playoff rankings come December, we will be in store for a good one. 
  • Houston once again proves that they belong with the elites of College Football. In less than a year, they have defeated both Florida State and Oklahoma. Houston coach Tom Herman has put this program in a great position to become the first non-power 5 conference school to be in the young life of the College Football Playoffs. 
  • Texas and Wisconsin both had big wins, reason why they enter our rankings as the only two unranked teams in the preseason polls. While both teams had great wins, the wins did not indicate how good they really are. Only time will tell if they can remain in the Fan-i 25. 
  • Alabama is still king of the college football world. With a complete new unit, Nick Saban may have his best team yet, or this could be one of the worst USC teams in recent memory (with exception of the sanctions). Bama will have a few test this season, where they will have to travel for some big games but if Jalen Hurts can perform like that every week, another National title could be on it's way to Tuscaloosa. 

The Noles almost gave me a heart attack Monday night. It was an abysmal first half from all units. The secondary couldn't find the ball, the offensive line was being bullied, running backs and receivers couldn't hold on to the ball (Dalvin Cook had the worst play of his career), and the quarterback look like he was making his first start. If it wasn't for a crucial touchdown to end the half, the Noles may have not been able to rally back with 33-unanswered points. The second half featured a much different team and Deondre Francois found his rhythm. With Jameis Winston in the building, the comparisons were still flowing. Francois wasn't as accurate as Winston in his first game but he threw for more yards. The only stat that matters is both were victorious.

Player of the Weekend

(Jeff Ahearn/The Pitt News)   

(Jeff Ahearn/The Pitt News)


James Conner, RB PITT - The 2014 ACC Player of the Year missed his 2015 campaign because of MCL tear he suffered in week one. Then in December, he was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma. Saturday against Villanova, Conner scored two TDs completely cancer-free. While he didn’t put up the huge numbers, for Conner to beat cancer, rehab his MCL, and still make it back in time enough to start the 2016, is enough for us to make him top player of the weekend.

  • Sr. Greg Ward Jr, QB Houston - 23/40 321 yards 2 TDs v. Oklahoma
  • Fr. Jalen Hurts, QB Alabama - 4 TDs v. USC
  • Jr. Nick Chubbs, RB Georgia - 32 carries 222 yards 2 TDs v. North Carolina

Power 5 rankings

  1. ACC 
  2. Big Ten 
  3. SEC 
  4. BIg 12 
  5. Pac 12 

The almighty SEC didn’t have a great opening weekend. SIX teams from the SEC suffered losses outside of the conference; Mississippi State loss to a South Alabama squad, Kentucky loss to Southern Mississippi, Missouri loss to West Virginia, Auburn loss to Clemson, LSU loss to WIsconsin, and Ole Miss gave up a 22-point lead to Florida State. If it wasn’t for Bama’s dominant win against USC, they would be lower than #3. Not the type of weekend that you would expect from the SEC. 

USC’s loss to Alabama was depressing. Not only did they get smashed to smithereens but they gave up in the process. You would think they would have more pride to come out and defend the legacy of the Trojans before them. This game was supposed to be the battle of the titans, two of the most prestigious programs in college football and it ended being a televised massacre. I’m not sure where USC can go from here, but they better fix it soon. 

Game to watch Next Weekend: 

Pitt @ Penn State 12pm - If you love renewed rivalries, then you will enjoy this one. The Panthers from Pitt and Nitany Lions from State College will play each other for the first time in 16 years. The first game was held in 1893, Penn State winning 32-0. PSU leads the series 50-42.

Virginia Tech v. #8 Tennessee 8pm @ Bristol Speedway - The game is anticipated to have the largest crowd in college football history. Hopefully the game will match the hypein another good ACC v. SEC battle.