The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 6

The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 6
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy 

Between MAC bye weeks and a plethora of 1-3 teams who have lost three (3) straight, it was survival of the bar tabs at Bottom Ten headquarters this week as the race for the ESPNCup – symbolic of collegiate Bottom Ten supremacy – enters stumbles on despite some of the closest balloting ever. 

In other Bottom Ten news, the race for Sgt Bilko Trophy – symbolic of service academy lousiness – kicks off as Air Force and Navy, both enjoying disturbingly fine seasons, play this week.

This week’s imbroglio: 

1. Rice (0-5; lost to Louisiana Tech 23-20 OT)
Mitigating Factors: Owls putting it all together in quest for first B-10 title, blowing four (4) leads in type of close morale-boosting loss that leads straight to B-10 glory…Owls show mettle of B-10 champions, pulling out loss despite out-rushing Bulldogs and only producing one (1) turnover…Flexible Owls have produced losses of between three (3) and 35 (35) points in 2019. 
FunFact: High-flying Owls have lost 27 of last 30.
Next Loss: at UAB

2. New Mexico State (0-5; lost to Fresno State 30-17)
Mitigating Factors: Aggies never in this one, punting on five (5) of first six (6) attempts before livening things by having interception returned for touchdown …Consistent Aggies rank 120th or worse in both Rushing Offense and Rushing Defense…Aggies looking for fourth winless season ever and first since vaunted 2005 squad ran the table at 0-12.
FunFact: Current seven (7)-game skid second-best in nation and best since man-sized 17-gamer in 2014-15.
Next Loss: Liberty

3. Akron (0-5; lost to UMess 37-29)
Mitigating Factors: Akron wins first B-10 showdown game of the season, retaining B-10 medal stand spot with nation’s-best tenth straight loss…Offense just bad enough to lose, producing four (4) turnovers and six (6) drives of three (3) plays or less in snapping Umess’ six (6)-game skid…Akron to use upcoming bye week to rest up for remaining minefield that is MAC play as remaining opponents have only won 40% of games in 2019, a figure that’s only that high because Akron can’t schedule themselves. 
FunFact: Zips 0-5 for first time since treasured 2010 squad started 0-11 before blowing finale and finishing 1-11.
Next Loss: Kent State (10/12)

4. Northern Illinois (1-3; lost to Vanderbilt 24-18)
Mitigating Factors: Huskies make first B-10 appearance of 2019, landing squarely on B-10 radar with huge road loss to SEC B-10 perennial…Offense leading way to B-10 glory, ranking 127th in Rushing Offense (84.8 ypg) and 124 in Scoring Offense (16.8 ppg)…Special teams chipping in averaging 5 feet, 6 inches per return, leading to calls for team to raid basketball team for 7-footer who can fall down and average more than two-(2)yards a return.
FunFact: With only win coming in opener, Huskies in running for Tostitos Plaque – issued to team(s) with longest losing streak in season that actually includes a win.
Next Loss: Ball State

5. Shorter (0-4; lost to Valdosta State 44-7)
Mitigating Factors: Division II Hawks showing no mercy, retaining Continental Cup – issued to team with longest all-division losing streak in NAFTA sphere of influence – with 43rd consecutive loss…Only touchdown came when Valdosta State Religious Studies majors let 5th-string running back score to get required charity work credits in for the semester.
FunFact: With 0-9-1 combined mark, Shorter earns B-10 Golden Boot Award, issued to B-10 team with whose football, chick soccer teams have worst combined record…If both teams lose out, Shorter will become first school to have both teams go winless in same season since Tijuana Tech in 1963.
Next Loss: at West Georgia

6. UConn (1-3; lost to Central Florida 56-21)
Mitigating Factors: Defending B-10 champions back in survey for first time since Week 1 with third straight loss….Huskies another team that won opener and is now in prime position to earn no worse than share of Tostitos Plaque – issued to team(s) with longest losing streak in season that actually includes a win – by losing out.
FunFact: Ritual coaching staff preaching about teamwork paying dividends, as Huskies hardly statistical juggernauts in 2019, losing despite ranking 120th or worse in just two (2) major NCAA stat categories.
Next Loss: South Florida

7. UMess (1-4; defeated Akron 37-29)
Mitigating Factors: With sheer depth of 2019 B-10 field, Minutemen playing for pride now, as B-10 title hopes scuttled with win over zipless Zips as squad unable to overcome four (4) Akron turnovers…Fan(s) thinking B-10 title scratching collective head(s) wondering what the deal is, as squad uncharacteristically overcomes early deficit and interception to run the football, convert third downs and force turnovers.
FunFact: With win, football team back in webmaster’s good graces, now getting same billing on homepage as chic field hockey, new athletic department strategic vision.
Next Loss: at Florida International

8. Mid-American Conference
Mitigating Factors: Wit 2019 B-10 race already shaping up to be closest ever, B-10 pollsters glad for easy Conference of the Week pick, as 2019 MAC most dominating B-10 conference since glory days of Sun Belt Conference…Conference so bad B-10 pollsters considering Bottom Ten MAC Edition poll, as only three (3) of twelve (12) conference teams have winning record.
FunFact: Despite non-conference struggles, MAC leveling up for strong .500 conference play mark. 

9. Nevada – Loss Vegas (1-3; lost to Wyoming 53-17)
Mitigating Factors: UNLV back in survey after third straight loss…After winning opener against lower-level team, Rebels making strong B-10 push, losing games by average score of 42-16 during current skid…2019 sixth straight season in which Rebels have lost at least three (3) straight games which B-10 pollsters are “pretty sure” is “like, you know, kinda bad and stuff”.
FunFact: Rebels yet another 1-3 team strutting stuff for Tostitos Plaque – issued to team(s) with longest losing streak in season that actually includes a win.
Next Loss: Boise State

10. Vanderbilt (1-3; defeated Northern Illinois 24-18)
Mitigating Factors: Commodores unable to maintain momentum from 0-3 start,  defeating Husky squad out to make B-10 statement as not even Commodores able to blow 14-point lead…Turn-of-century merger of Athletic, Student Affairs departments actually pays dividends this week as acrobats, mimes from Circus Studies department produce confusing defensive schemes that force Huskies into punting on first six (6) possessions
FunFact: With most of MAC stalwarts returning from bye weeks, Commodores need strong conference road loss this week to even think of staying in B-10 survey.
Next Loss: at Ole Miss

This Week’s Clash of the Titans: Rice at UAB
MAC Thriller of the Week: Ball State at Northern Illinois
Bottom Ten Alumni Association Game of the Week: UMess at Florida International
Up Next On ESPN732: Rice at UAB


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