Zemek: The Teams That Aren't For Real

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Oct 1, 2012


Matt Zemek Monday Thought: Too many records and too many teams aren't the real deal


- Cirminiello: Geno Smith Is The Real Deal
- Zemek: The Teams That Aren't For Real
- Harrison: Penn State As The Big Ten Spoiler
- Johnson: The ACC's Woes Continue
- Doan: So What If Ohio State Goes 12-0? 

By Matt Zemek

Remember last November, when lots of teams gained impressive-looking records without beating many (if any) elite opponents? South Carolina won 10 regular-season games while avoiding LSU and Alabama and losing to Arkansas. Wisconsin went 10-2 through 12 games in 2011, going 2-2 in true road games and trailing Illinois 14-0 in one of those two road wins. Michigan went 10-2… and didn’t beat a single ranked team on the road. Stanford went 11-1 in the regular season last year… and won one game against a team with more than eight victories. Houston didn’t beat a single ranked team en route to a 12-0 record before losing the Conference USA Championship Game.

Well, one year later, it's clear that after five weeks, more teams have fat records based on junk-food victories, not solid nutrition or gourmet feasts. Cheap, empty calories form the diets of a lot of unbeaten teams.

Northwestern hasn't beaten anybody to get to 5-0. Texas, at 4-0, is only beginning to be tested. The 4-0 TCU Horned Frogs haven't been tested yet. Texas Tech scored a nice little win against Iowa State to move to 4-0, but the meat of the Big 12 slate awaits the Red Raiders. West Virginia? Sure, the Mountaineers haven't lost, but they WILL with that (lack of) defense.

Rutgers' win at Arkansas doesn't seem all that impressive anymore. It's a good win, but hardly a great one. The unbeaten Scarlet Knights and the Louisville Cardinals still have a lot to prove despite no blemishes in the loss column to date. Notre Dame's defense is great, but the Fighting Irish might not play a single good offense this season. You saw how poor Stanford's offense is right now. Oklahoma's offense is a mess, and so is USC's offense as well.

Oregon, at 5-0, hasn't faced a formidable foe to this point. South Carolina and Georgia have beaten Vanderbilt and Missouri in the SEC en route to 5-0 records. Can you say "inflated"? Florida beat Texas A&M and Tennessee, but LSU will tell the tale about the Gators this upcoming weekend. Speaking of 4-0 LSU, we'll see if the last two weeks were aberrations or genuine indicators of emergent problems. Mississippi State hasn't been pushed hard on the road to a 4-0 mark.

Texas-San Antonio is 5-0 in its first FBS season, but at least the Roadrunners aren't squarely in the national spotlight. No one will hype the Roadrunners for going unbeaten in September.

There are a lot of other September unbeatens who don't deserve a whole lot of praise just yet. They need to earn elite status over the next five to eight weeks. Records are not what they seem in this sport.

- Cirminiello: Geno Smith Is The Real Deal
- Zemek: The Teams That Aren't For Real
- Harrison: Penn State As The Big Ten Spoiler
- Johnson: The ACC's Woes Continue
- Doan: So What If Ohio State Goes 12-0?