Week 8 in the Group of Five (G5) saw the following breakdown of games:
- 24 G5 Conference Games
- 3 G5 vs G5 non-conference
- 3 G5 vs P5 Game
BYU brought another win to the G5 with its 21-19 win over Washington State. BYU is now 4-0 against the PAC-12 in 2021. Army gave #15 Wake Forest all it wanted in a 70-56 shootout loss.
Appalachian State. After a completely dismal performance against Louisiana the week before, the Mountaineers pulled the upset knocking off #14 Coastal Carolina and assuming control of the Sunbelt East. It was a fantastic game highlighted by over 31,000 fans filling Kidd Brewer stadium (capacity 30K) and creating a great showcase for the Sunbelt and G5 football. In their other weeknight game at Kidd Brewer, the Mountaineers drew over 28,000. It is a great statement for the Appalachian State program and for G5 football.
South Florida. The Bulls picked up their first win against an FBS opponent on the season when they knocked off Temple 34-14. The Bulls were close the previous week against Tulsa, but put together a complete performance to bring their record to 2-5 on the year. The Temple win marked South Florida’s first win over an FBS opponent in nearly 2 years (Oct 26, 2019 against East Carolina).
Louisiana-Monroe. We have to give props to the Warhawks improving to 4-3 on the season following their 41-31 win over South Alabama. After being picked to finish last in the Sunbelt West, ULM is sitting in second place. So far, the turnaround engineered by Terry Bowden has been nothing short of miraculous.
Utah State. Speaking of turnarounds, we continued to be impressed with the job Blake Anderson is doing at Utah State. After a dismal 1-5 2020 campaign, the Aggies now find themselves in first in the Mountain division of the MWC following an exciting 26-24 win over Colorado State. At 5-2, the Aggies are only 1 victory away from bowl eligibility and are true contenders in the MWC.
Toledo. We kept wondering when the Rockets would show up. After dropping close decisions to Central Michigan and Northern Illinois, the Rockets thoroughly dominated a good Western Michigan team 34-15 to even their record at 4-4. At 2-2 in conference play, the Rockets find themselves in a 5-way tie for second in the MAC West. With division-leading Northern Illinois facing a tough final 4 game stretch, the MAC West remains wide open.
Fresno State. In one of the marquee matchups of the MWC season, the Bulldogs stopped a late two-point conversion to defeat the Nevada Wolfpack 34-32. With the win the Bulldogs move into second place in the West division of the MWC with an away game against the division-leading San Diego State Aztecs on tap for next week.
Wyoming. The Cowboys were 20-point favorites over the New Mexico Lobos and failed to show up in a 14-3 loss. The Lobos came into the game allowing nearly 29 point a game but put the clamps on a suddenly inept Cowboy offense. After averaging 35 points a game in their first four games, the Cowboys have scored a total of 17 in their last three.
UMass. Some losses are just worse than others. The Minutemen picked up their first win in more than 2 years on October 9 when they beat UConn. With two weeks off, we were hoping they would build on the momentum and come out with some fight against Florida State. Instead, the Minutemen suffered their worst loss of the year 59-3 to the Seminoles. Aside from the UConn game, UMass has lost their remaining 6 games by an average of 49-13.
G5 Gurus Top 20 following Week 5.
In the Group of Five poll, Cincinnati remains firmly entrenched at number one despite a close call with Navy. After suffering their first loss, Coastal Carolina drops 4 spots and is replaced by Texas- San Antonio at #2. SMU slides in at number 3, with San Diego jumping 3 spots to number 4. Louisiana, despite a struggle with Arkansas State, moves up 1 to number 5.
Coastal leads the second 5 followed by Houston, BYU, Fresno State, and Appalachian State. Nevada lands after number 11 after a close loss to Fresno State, Northern Illinois jumps 3 spots to number 12. Air Force falls 3 spots to number 13, followed in order by Liberty, Utah State, Army, Boise State, Western Michigan, and UTEP. UCF re-enters at the number 20 spot after throttling Memphis 24-7.
|San Diego State||MWC||12-2|
|Texas San Antonio||CUSA||12-2|