Bottom 25 college football rankings: Nebraska navigating its exit as UTEP reclaims top spot
Anybody can rank the 25 best teams, only the Bottom 25 ranks the worst every single week
The Bottom 25 is quickly running out of Power Five teams. With UCLA winning its second straight last week, the Bruins climbed out of our grasp. They're currently at No. 30 in the Bottom 25 rankings, so they could return, but they aren't here for the time being. Then there was Arkansas picking up its second win against Tulsa in last week's Bottom 25 Game of the Century of the Week. It wasn't enough to let the Hogs loose, but the gap between them and our No. 26 team Tulane is minuscule.
Nebraska won its first game of the season as well, doing so in impressive fashion and causing the Huskers to drop like a stone in the Bottom 25. Next up is Bethune-Cookman, and while I can't be sure a win there would be enough to escape, it seems as if it's only a matter of time before Nebraska's gone too.
Thankfully, teams like Oregon State, Rutgers, Louisville and North Carolina seem intent on sticking around. Plus, there are a few of our old Power Five friends hanging around that seem to be on the verge of joining the Bottom 25 for the first time all season. You can go home again, kids, and the door is always open.
After all, the Bottom 25 is always more fun when the Power Five kids come out. Anyway, onto this week's rankings.
|25. Old Dominion||2-6||The Monarchs picked up their first win since knocking off Virginia Tech, but unlike that victory, a 37-34 triumph over No. 13 Western Kentucky isn't enough to get out of the Bottom 25. (Last week: 13)|
|24. UNLV||2-5||The Rebels seem to be recovering from the loss of Armani Rogers, as they played well in a loss to Air Force. This week, they might be able to escape as they play No. 2 San Jose State. (25)|
|23. Arkansas||2-6||As previously mentioned, the 23-0 win over No. 11 Tulsa wasn't enough to get Arkansas out of the Bottom 25. This week, the Hogs get a beatable Vanderbilt team. Could it be that the next time the Bottom 25 calls the Hogs it'll be on the phone to see how they're doing? (11)|
|22. East Carolina||2-5||The Pirates are the only new team in the rankings this week following a 37-10 loss to UCF. They'll likely stick around another week, as they're on a bye before playing Memphis. (Not Ranked)|
|21. Navy||2-5||Yes, Navy remains in the Bottom 25 following a 49-36 loss to Houston, and now the Mids get Notre Dame next in a murderous stretch of their schedule that also includes Cincinnati and UCF in the coming weeks. (24)|
|20. North Carolina||1-5||The Heels almost got out. They had a fourth-quarter lead on Syracuse but couldn't hold it, and then went on to lose to the Orange 40-37 in double-overtime. Next up is a road game against a Virginia team that's looked feisty the last few weeks. (21)|
|19. South Alabama||2-5||The Jaguars had a bye last week, but they play Troy on Tuesday night in some #FunBelt action. A spotlight game for the entire country to enjoy the Bottom 25. I mean, what else are you going to watch? The World Series? (18)|
|18. Nebraska||1-6||I predicted this team would win at least three of its next four last week, and now it has one win under its belt. I don't know how much longer you'll be here, Nebraska, but in case you leave us, I want you to know how much the Bottom 25 has enjoyed having you around. Don't be a stranger. (4)|
|17. Georgia State||2-5||I have now seen Georgia State play three full games this season, and I honestly don't know how this team isn't allowing 60 points per game. It feels like they are. Anyway, Coastal Carolina is up this week. (22)|
|16. Louisville||2-5||The Cardinals are in a big spot this week. They get Wake Forest at home, and this game looks like their last best chance at picking up a third win this season. After the Deacs, it's Clemson, Syracuse, NC State and Kentucky. (17)|
|15. UMass||2-6||The Minutemen lost to Coastal Carolina last week and this week they get UConn. It's a loser loses their U match. (20)|
|14. Wyoming||2-6||In the preseason, my CBS Sports colleague Barton Simmons took the over on Wyoming's 2018 win total during our preseason locks episode of the 247 College Football Podcast (you should download and subscribe to it on iTunes or wherever you listen to your podcasts). Chip Patterson and I were right on board with him. "This team might be better off without Josh Allen!" If you do subscribe to the pod, maybe don't go back and listen to that episode. (16)|
|13. Western Kentucky||1-6||Western Kentucky lost to Old Dominion in mind-melting fashion last weekend, and it finds itself creeping toward the Bottom 10. This week, it gets one of the best teams in C-USA in FIU. (19)|
|12. New Mexico State||2-6||The good news for New Mexico State is that it's averaging 39.3 points per game in its last three games. The bad news is it's allowed an average of 51.7 points per game in that same time span. (14)|
|11. Tulsa||1-6||Tulsa couldn't manage a point against Arkansas, which is the best strategy for losing the Bottom 25 Game of the Century of the Week. This week, it gets a Tulane team on the Bottom 25 fringe, and then UConn the week after that. So this seems like a now-or-never kind of situation for the Hurricane. (15)|
|10. Texas State||1-6||There are currently a lot of teams jockeying for Bottom 25 playoff position, and this week we're going to lose at least one of them. So I hope you're as pumped as I am for the showdown between No. 10 Texas State and No. 12 New Mexico State in The Bottom 25 Game of the Century of the Week. (10)|
|9. Kent State||1-7||The Flashes came as close to their second win as you can, losing to Akron 24-23 in overtime. This week, it's another shot at a victory when they hit the road to take on No. 3 Bowling Green next Tuesday (9)|
|8. Central Michigan||1-7||That Akron team that Kent State came so close to beating? The Chippewas hit the road to take them on this week. Can they pull off what Kent State couldn't? (12)|
|7. Rutgers||1-7||Rutgers nearly knocked off Northwestern. Seriously. They lost 18-15, and in a way, that feels like a win for Rutgers. Like, at the end of the game, I bet the Rutgers locker room felt better about itself than the Northwestern locker room did. Rutgers now has a week off before it reaches the worst final stretch imaginable: Wisconsin, Michigan, Penn State and Michigan State. (7)|
|6. Oregon State||1-6||I wrote last week that Cal would probably be the best chance Oregon State has to get another win this season, and the Beavers lost 49-7. That about sums it all up. (8)|
|5. Rice||1-7||Mike Bloomgren hasn't gotten the results he wants at Rice yet, but have you seen Stanford's rushing attack this season without him? If you're a Rice fan, that could be a reason for optimism going forward. (5)|
|4. UConn||1-6||South Florida is having a significant impact on the Bottom 25 this season. First, it let Tulsa play so well against them that the Hurricane can't crack the Bottom 10, and now they cost UConn its No. 1 spot. This week, the Huskies get No. 15 UMass. (1)|
|3. Bowling Green||1-7||The Falcons lost to Ohio 49-14 in Carl Pelini's debut, but there's time to lick their feathers because they're on a bye this week. Up next it's No. 9 Kent State. (6)|
|2. San Jose State||0-7||The Spartans find themselves as one of only two winless teams remaining, further proving that it's more challenging to go winless than it is undefeated. If they want to get that first win (and I want them to get it too), the next two weeks seem like the best time to do so. This week it's No. 24 UNLV, and next week it's No. 14 Wyoming. (2)|
|1. UTEP||0-7||UTEP didn't get back to No. 1 through any fault of its own this week. In fact, following a 31-24 loss to Louisiana Tech, UTEP's score in my ratings improved. The problem for the Miners was that San Jose State's and UConn's did as well, and the gap between the three of them had been slim. I do think this team will end its 19-game losing streak at some point this season, though I'm skeptical it'll be this week against UAB. No. 5 Rice is on the schedule, as is No. 13 Western Kentucky, however. (3)|
No Longer Ranked: UCLA (23)
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