Here's the CFN belief when it comes to
ranking teams: From the preseason until the end of the bowls, you must
rank teams based on how good you believe they are at that time. However,
once the year is complete, it's only fair to take the subjectivity out
of it and go by what actually happened on the field. To do that, we've
created the CFN Formula used to rank every team in every year in order to properly
compare and contrast seasons from different eras.
Two things to keep in mind. 1) This takes into account the entire
season punishing ugly losses and pumping up good wins. A win at the
beginning of the year counts the same as a win at the end, so there
might be some head-to-head discrepancies; they're unavoidable in any
ranking system. Remember, the formula looks at year from start to finish and not
just which team beat another.
- CFN Final 2007 Rankings -
The Top Ten
- CFN Final 2007 Rankings -
No. 11 to 25
- CFN Final 2006 Rankings
|CFN Final 2007
Based on how good we thought the teams were.
West Virginia (12-2)
Ohio State (11-2)
Virginia Tech (11-3)
Boston College (12-2)
Oregon State (9-4)
Arizona State (10-3)
Penn State (9-4)
Texas Tech (9-4)
Wake Forest (9-4)
South Florida (9-4)
Mississippi State (8-5)
Oklahoma State (7-6)
Michigan State (7-6)
Texas A&M (7-6)
Florida State (7-6)
East Carolina (8-5)
Boise State (10-3)
Fresno State (9-4)
Georgia Tech (7-6)
Air Force (9-4)
South Carolina (6-6)
New Mexico (9-4)
NC State (5-7)
Kansas State (5-7)
Iowa State (3-9)
Washington State (5-7)
San Jose State (5-7)
Ole Miss (3-9)
North Carolina (4-8)
Florida Atlantic (8-5)
Notre Dame (3-9)
Southern Miss (7-6)
San Diego State (4-8)
UL Monroe (6-6)
Ball State (7-6)
Bowling Green (8-5)
Colorado State (3-9)
Central Michigan (8-6)
Western Michigan (5-7)
Miami University (6-7)
Louisiana Tech (5-7)
Eastern Michigan (4-8)
UL Lafayette (3-9)
Middle Tennessee (5-7)
Arkansas State (5-7)
Northern Illinois (2-10)
Utah State (2-10)
New Mexico State (4-9)
Kent State (3-9)
North Texas (2-10)
26. Arizona State (10-3) CFN Score: 14.29
2006 Score: 8.26 2006 Ranking: 64
While this might seem low considering ASU was on the verge of
playing in a BCS game, it shows how average the overall schedule really
was with only two wins over teams that finished with a winning record.
Even so, ten wins are ten wins as the first year of the Dennis Erickson
era was a major success.
27. Kentucky (8-5) CFN Score: 14.27
2006 Score: 11.65 2006 Ranking: 42
It was a solid year with wins over Louisville and LSU, but it wasn't as
good as it should've been considering the talent-level on offense and a
not-that-bad season from the D. An inexplicable 31-14 home loss
to Mississippi State was part of a rough second half with four losses in
five games. Yeah, UK won the Music City Bowl, but it came against a
depleted Florida State.
28. Clemson (9-4) CFN Score: 14.06
2006 Score: 13.77 2006 Ranking: 32
It should've been a much better year. The Tigers overcame a two-game
lull against Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech to go on a four-game winning
streak to become the ACC's hot team, and then came the 20-17 home loss
to a reeling Boston College. Beating South Carolina is always nice, but
the overtime loss to Auburn in the Chick-fil-A Bowl ended yet another
season on a sour note.
29. Texas Tech (9-4) CFN Score: 13.64
2006 Score: 10.58 2006 Ranking: 47
The Red Raiders put up their normal huge passing numbers and rolled
through the year even though they didn't beat anyone outside of Texas
A&M. And then came the nationally televised win over Oklahoma to ruin
the Sooners' national title hopes. The comeback win over Virginia in the
Gator bowl sealed what turned out to be a fantastic year that could've
been a whole bunch better if the defense had come up with a stop against
Oklahoma State, Colorado or Texas.
30. Oregon State (9-4) CFN Score: 13.37
2006 Score: 18.24 2006 Ranking: 14
A better team than it'll be remembered, OSU got through a tough
schedule facing seven bowl teams to beat Maryland in the Emerald Bowl.
Despite shaky quarterback play, the offense wasn't all that bad while
the defense was the best in the nation against the run, fifth in sacks,
seventh in tackles for loss, and eighth overall.
31. Virginia (9-4) CFN Score: 13.05
2006 Score: 5.34 2006 Ranking: 73
Virginia didn't win every close game; it just seemed that way. Even
with a struggling offense, the Cavaliers won six of their nine games by
a total of 12 points, And then the college football karma gods delivered
payback with a painful late loss to Texas Tech in the Gator Bowl.
Considering the 23-3 loss at Wyoming to open the season, 9-4, no matter
how it happened, is impressive.
32. Wisconsin (9-4) CFN Score: 13.01
2006 Score: 17.40 2006 Ranking: 17
You play a lousy non-conference schedule, you get a low overall
score. The wins over Michigan State and Michigan were nice, but that was
it for a battered and bruised Badger team that lost most of the top
receivers and fought through major injuries to P.J. Hill, the defensive
line, and the secondary.
33. Wake Forest (9-4) CFN Score: 12.92
2006 Score: 15.91 2006 Ranking: 23
The Demon Deacons proved that 2006 wasn't a fluke with a nine-win
season complete with a 24-10 win over Connecticut in the Meineke Car
Care Bowl. The defense was fantastic, the offense stingy when it came to
turnovers, and the team won nine of its final 11 games. As good as the
year was, it could've been really, really special being roughly four
plays away from being 11-1 in the regular season.
34. Air Force (9-4) CFN Score: 12.84
2006 Score: 2.35 2006 Ranking: 100
Did anyone see this coming? Troy Calhoun came in and instantly
turned the program around with a high-octane rushing attack, a tough,
aggressive defense, and a nine-win season going 6-2 in Mountain West
play. However, there wasn't a win over a bowl team after September 13.
35. Arkansas (8-5) CFN Score: 12.77
2006 Score: 16.94 2006 Ranking: 19
Oh sure, there was the win over LSU and the shootout over South
Carolina, and Darren McFadden made a great run in the Heisman chase, but
Houston Nutt's leaving/let go for the Ole Miss job, a crushing loss to
Missouri in the Cotton Bowl, and close calls against Alabama, Kentucky
and Auburn cast a pall over the year.
36. Utah (9-4) CFN Score: 12.66
2006 Score: 12.17 2006 Ranking: 40
It wasn't even September and Utah was already 0-1 with a loss to
Oregon State and with star QB Brian Johnson out with a collarbone
injury. A stunning 44-6 win over UCLA aside, the Utes started off 1-3
while going nowhere fast with a disastrous 27-0 loss to UNLV. And then
the offense caught fire, and the defense turned into a brick wall, as
the Utes went 8-1 the rest of the way with only a late loss to BYU,
coming on a heartbreaking late drive, ruining the run.
37. Rutgers (8-5) CFN Score: 12.46
2006 Score: 18.36 2006 Ranking: 13
How far has Rutgers come under Greg Schiano? A 8-5 season with a
bowl win is a disappointment. Led by the running of Ray Rice, and the
nation's 17th best defense, the Scarlet Knights had a good season, but
considering the favorable schedule, it wasn't a great one. The only good
win was against South Florida while home losses to Maryland, Cincinnati
and West Virginia killed the momentum of 2006.
38. Mississippi State (8-5) CFN Score: 12.40
2006 Score: 2.87 2006 Ranking: 92
On August 30th, MSU lost at home to LSU 45-0. Who could've ever
known Sylvester Croom's team would go 8-4 the rest of the way with a
bowl win over UCF and with wins over Auburn and Alabama? Even though the
offense was the worst in the SEC, finishing 113th in the nation in both
total offense and passing, the defense was the difference in the wins.
39. Connecticut (9-4)
CFN Score: 12.16
2006 Score: 3.91 2006 Ranking: 81
All defense, little offense, the Huskies came up with a great year
by not turning the ball over, forcing mistakes, and by taking advantage
of every opportunity. Mid-season wins over Louisville, South Florida and
Rutgers set the tone, but losses to Cincinnati, West Virginia and Wake
Forest in the final four games brought the team back down to earth.
40. Michigan State (7-6) CFN Score: 12.13
2006 Score: 2.69 2006 Ranking: 94
Mark Dantonio instantly turned the program around by eliminating the
flake factor. Past Spartan teams would've gone in the tank after losing
to Michigan, but MSU came back roaring with a 48-31 win at Purdue and a
stirring comeback victory over Penn State to get into a bowl. All six
losses were by less than a touchdown including a battle at Ohio State
and in the Champs Sports Bowl to Boston College.
41. East Carolina (8-5) CFN Score: 11.70
2006 Score: 8.39 2006 Ranking: 62
Skip Holtz led the Pirates to a solid season going 6-2 in Conference USA
play with an attacking defense and an offense that didn't turn the ball
over, but it took a 41-38 Hawaii Bowl win over Boise State to put an
exclamation point on the year. Chris Johnson got lost in the shuffle of
strong C-USA running backs, but he turned into one of the nation's best
42. UCLA (6-7) CFN Score: 11.35
2006 Score: 13.94 2006 Ranking: 31
Easily the most inconsistent team in the nation, UCLA was good
enough to beat BYU, Cal and Oregon, but weird enough to lose to Utah
(when it was reeling) 44-6, got blasted by Washington State 27-7, and
suffered the ultimate indignity with a 20-6 home loss to Notre Dame.
This was also one of the most injured teams in the country when it came
to keeping skill players upright, and it showed with an offense that
finished 99th in the nation in yards and 115th in passing efficiency.
43. South Carolina (6-6) CFN Score: 11.31
2006 Score: 13.65 2006 Ranking: 34
One of the biggest crashes of the year, the Gamecocks were 6-1 with
wins over Georgia and Kentucky, and then came the upset home loss to
Vanderbilt sparking a five game losing streak to close out the season.
Injuries were a major issue for the SEC's worst run defense and worst
44. Alabama (7-6) CFN Score: 11.20
2006 Score: 7.19 2006 Ranking: 66
Nick Saban's first season started out well, hitting a high point
with a 41-17 win over Tennessee and a 6-2 start, and then came a
crashing thud losing four straight games including a 21-14 gack to UL
Monroe and yet another loss to Auburn. The bowl win over Colorado calmed
everything down ... for now.
45. Purdue (8-5) CFN Score: 11.13
2006 Score: 7.97 2006 Ranking: 65
Purdue beat most of the teams it was supposed to, and outside of a
season-ender against Indiana, lost to the teams it was supposed to. The
offense was the Big Ten's best, but the defense struggled in key games
against Michigan State and Michigan. Curtis Painter set the tone for
what should be a huge 2008 season.
46. Oklahoma State (7-6) CFN Score: 10.95
2006 Score: 9.54 2006 Ranking: 54
Oh sure, there was a bowl win over Indiana and the offense was as
effective as any in America, but 2007 will be remembered for one wacky,
next-level rant from head coach Mike Gundy. The defense was way too
porous to beat the better Big 12 teams, but the O was good enough to
outbomb Texas Tech following a loss at Troy.
47. New Mexico (9-4) CFN Score: 10.93
2006 Score: 5.68 2006 Ranking: 71
While the Lobos didn't get a whole bunch of Mountain West respect,
they came up with a big year complete with the first bowl win under head
coach Rocky Long. The opening day loss to UTEP turned out to be an
aberration with close wins over Arizona and Air Force making up for it.
The defense was among the best in the league and the offense was just
good enough to get by.
48. California (7-6) CFN Score: 10.87
2006 Score: 17.28 2006 Ranking: 18
Cal was a time out against Oregon State away from being the No. 1
team in the nation, and then it fell off the map losing six of its final
seven games, including a loss to Stanford, before beating Air Force in
the Armed Forces Bowl. The offense was a disappointment, the defense
didn't come through with enough clutch stops, and a 3-6 Pac 10 record
made this one of the season's biggest flops.
49. Fresno State (9-4) CFN Score: 10.70
2006 Score: 3.956 2006 Ranking: 80
Pat Hill's team had a fantastic bounceback season complete with a
Humanitarian Bowl win over Georgia Tech and a win over Kansas State.
With a balanced offense and a defense that wasn't awful, this might have
been the stepping-stone for a big 2008 when the Bulldogs will likely be
the preseason WAC favorites.
50. Texas A&M (7-6) CFN Score: 10.55
2006 Score: 14.14 2006 Ranking: 30
The Aggies beat Texas, but outside of Oklahoma State, there wasn't a
win over anyone else with a pulse. Yet another disappointing year under
Dennis Franchione forced a coaching change, but could Mike Sherman have
done any better in a year when Kansas and Missouri became national title
51. Florida State (7-6) CFN Score: 10.05
2006 Score: 12.41 2006 Ranking: 39
Another year, another step further away from where FSU used to be.
The program passed the torch from Bobby Bowden to Jimbo Fisher, even if
the coaching change hasn't happened yet, and now there has to be more
offense after averaging just 369 yards per game. The defense fell off
the map by the end of the year, and the passing game couldn't pick up
52. Troy (8-4) CFN Score: 10.05
2006 Score: 9.94 2006 Ranking: 53
The loss to Florida Atlantic killed bowl hopes for an 8-4 team that
beat Oklahoma State with ease and lost to Arkansas, Florida and Georgia.
There should've been a 13th game for Omar Haugabook and the Sun Belt's
best offense. The defense led the league in points allowed and was
53. TCU (8-5) CFN Score: 9.83
2006 Score: 15.30 2006 Ranking: 25
Easily one of the most disappointing teams of the 2007 season, the
BCS was considered a realistic goal to start the year before Texas had
other ideas in a 34-13 win. All four Mountain West losses came by less
than a touchdown and the most impressive win was over New Mexico, but it
was yet another bowl season under Gary Patterson helped by one of the
nation's stingiest defenses.
54. Louisville (6-6) CFN Score: 9.70
2006 Score: 25.71 2006 Ranking: 2
Considered a national title contender before the season, a 58-42 win
over Middle Tennessee gave an early indication that the Steve Kragthorpe
era might get off to a rough start, and then came losses to Kentucky and
Syracuse to screw everything up. The offense was the best in the Big
East, mostly due to Brian Brohm, but the defense was abysmal. Even so,
the team wasn't as bad as everyone made it out to be, losing four of six
games by less than a touchdown with five of the six losses coming to
55. Maryland (6-7) CFN Score: 9.54
2006 Score: 14.19 2006 Ranking: 29
The Terps had their moments with wins over Georgia Tech, Rutgers and
Boston College, but it was a losing season, helped by a bad loss to
North Carolina, and finished up with a loss to Oregon State in the
Emerald Bowl. Was this a tease team? It was good enough to play with
anyone in the conference, but it also lost to North Carolina and didn't
show nearly enough offense or pass rush to be a true ACC contender.
56. Indiana (7-6) CFN Score: 9.46
2006 Score: 5.00 2006 Ranking: 75
Losing head coach Terry Hoeppner to a brain tumor cast a cloud over
the season, but the team rallied in his memory to get a 13th game thanks
to a 27-24 loss to Purdue at the end of the year. The Insight Bowl
blowout against Oklahoma State ruined the story, but just getting to a
bowl made this a successful year.
57. Florida Atlantic (8-5) CFN Score: 9.35
2006 Score: 3.49 2006 Ranking: 86
The Owls won four of the last final five games including an upset at
Troy to win the Sun Belt title and a victory in the New Orleans Bowl
over Memphis. Four of the five losses came to Oklahoma State, Kentucky,
South Florida and Florida, while the other came in three overtimes to UL
Monroe. The defense didn't get any pass rush and gave up points in
bunches, but Rusty Smith and the passing game was fantastic throughout.
58. Ball State (7-6)
CFN Score: 8.45
2006 Score: 3.59 2006 Ranking: 84
Nate Davis and the Cardinal passing game led the way to an exciting
season, even with the blowout International Bowl loss to Rutgers to
close things out. Even with all the problems on defense, especially
against the run, Davis was able to bomb away to one of the program's
strongest years in recent history.
59. Pitt (5-7) CFN Score: 8.25
2006 Score: 9.07 2006 Ranking: 58
There's closing out on with a momentum builder, and there's beating West
Virginia in Morgantown to ruin an archrival's national title hopes.
Overall, the offense struggled throughout, but the defense was the best
in the Big East even after giving up 44 to Virginia, 48 to Navy and 48
to South Florida. Four losses came by a touchdown or less.
Georgia Tech (7-6) CFN Score: 8.24
2006 Score: 8.44 2006 Ranking: 60
With all the returning talent and experience, the team should've
been far, far better. That's why Paul Johnson is in and Chan Gailey is
out. The defense led the nation in sacks and led the ACC in rushing, but
the passing game never materialized. Losing to Georgia (again) and at
home against Virginia Tech forced the coaching change.
61. Colorado (6-7) CFN Score: 8.18
2006 Score: 0.96 2006 Ranking: 109
Considering where the Buffs were last year, this was a good rebound
year with a trip to a bowl game and hope for the future thanks to QB
Cody Hawkins. The pass defense has to be better starting with the need
for an improved pass rush. For all the inconsistencies and issues, CU
was able to push Kansas, blasted Nebraska, and beat Oklahoma.
62. Houston (8-5) CFN Score: 8.07
2006 Score: 15.54 2006 Ranking: 24
The offense finished fourth in the nation with excellent pop and
home-run hitting ability, but turnovers and a 56-7 loss to Tulsa
relegated the Cougars to the Texas Bowl. Now the program's taking a new
direction with a coaching change.
63. Bowling Green (8-5)
CFN Score: 7.87
2006 Score: 8.47 2006 Ranking: 8.47
A 63-7 GMAC Bowl loss to Tulsa aside, the Falcons had a nice
stepping-stone season with a resurgence in the passing game thanks to QB
Tyler Sheehan. The defense was lousy against the run, but the
offense was able to bomb its way to wins throughout the MAC season
winning five of the final six games before the Tulsa debacle.
64. Central Michigan (8-6) CFN Score: 7.27
2006 Score: 14.25 2006 Ranking: 28
The ranking might seem low for the MAC champion, especially considered
other league teams are ranked higher, but it shows how the team beat
absolutely no one. The best win came against Ball State, was killed,
KILLED, by everyone but Army in non-conference play, and beat
a bad Miami team for the MAC title. The defense was miserable, but Dan
LeFevour became the second player (after Tim Tebow) to run and throw for
20 touchdowns in the same year.
65. Navy (8-5) CFN Score: 7.25
2006 Score: 10.50 2006 Ranking: 49
The last year in the great Paul Johnson era had yet another bowl
appearance and yet another win over Army, but it'll be remembered for
one thing: Notre Dame. The Midshipmen broke the 43-game hex against the
Irish and used its rushing attack, the best in America, to overcome an
awful pass defense that got ripped apart by Delaware and North Texas.
Five games were decided by three points or fewer.
66. Nebraska (5-7) CFN Score: 7.13
2006 Score: 15.11 2006 Ranking: 26
One of the nation's weirdest teams, it began with a nice 4-1 start, got
thumped by Oklahoma State and Texas A&M, collapsed against Texas, got
blasted 76-39 at Kansas, came back to score 73 against Kansas State the
following week, closed out with a 65-51 loss at Colorado, got Tom
Osborne back in the mix, fired Bill Callahan, and hired Bo Pelini.
Defense will be the first order of business this off-season.
67. Southern Miss (7-6) CFN Score: 7.01
2006 Score: 12.10 2006 Ranking: 41
Jeff Bower's final season wasn't awful, but a shocking nationally
televised loss to Rice and a tough home loss to Memphis set the wheels
in motion for a coaching change. The running game was great and the
defense was one of Conference USA's best, but it's conference title or
bust for the program.
68. Kansas State (5-7) CFN Score: 6.94
2006 Score: 10.41 2006 Ranking: 50
One of the nation's biggest flops, the Wildcats beat Texas in Austin
and played relatively well in a loss at Auburn on the way to a 5-3
start, and then they inexplicably lost to Iowa State and gave up 73 to
Nebraska as part of a four-game losing streak to close out the year. The
offense exploded and the defense wasn't awful, but there were too many
69. Arizona (5-7) CFN Score: 6.81
2006 Score: 10.14 2006 Ranking: 52
Another year, another inconsistent Arizona team. The passing attack
was tenth in the nation, but it didn't crank out nearly enough points
while the defense was merely average. There was the win over Oregon to
start a Duck downslide, but there were also losses to New Mexico and
Stanford as part of the four losses by a touchdown or less.
70. Iowa (6-6) CFN Score: 6.72
2006 Score: 9.12 2006 Ranking: 57
One of the nation's most disappointing teams, an early loss to Iowa
State set a bad tone, and then injury after injury struck, especially in
the receiving corps, and the offense turned into the Big Ten's worst.
The defense was good enough to come up with a win over Illinois, but the
O almost never came through. Even so, a bowl game was there for the
taking before an inexcusable home loss to Western Michigan in the season
T71. UL Monroe (6-6) CFN Score: 6.50
2006 Score: 3.53 2006 Ranking: 85
The Warhawks struggled early with a 1-5 start including an
inexcusable loss to North Texas, and then they became the Sun Belt's
hottest team winning five of the last six including a three overtime win
over eventual champ Florida Atlantic and a stunning 21-14 win over
Alabama. A tough 43-40 home loss to Middle Tennessee prevented a bowl
T71. Washington (4-9)
CFN Score: 6.50
2006 Score: 5.93 2006 Ranking: 70
A brutal schedule facing nine bowl teams including Boise State
(win), Ohio State (loss) and Hawaii (loss) ruined any hope of a good
year. QB Jake Locker was a find, but the defense struggle throughout
especially against the pass.
73. NC State (5-7) CFN Score: 6.27
2006 Score: 3.48 2006 Ranking: 88
Just when it seemed like Tom O'Brien's first season would be a total
wash, the team started winning close games beating Virginia by five,
Miami by three and North Carolina by four. Turnovers were a major
problem, but scoring was the biggest issue averaging a mere 21 points
per game with five games under 20.
74. Northwestern (6-6) CFN Score: 6.13
2006 Score: 1.67 2006 Ranking: 102
The Wildcats got bowl eligible with a win over Indiana, but were
squeezed out with not enough open slots. They have no one to blame but
themselves losing at home to Duke in mid-September. The defense was
consistently mediocre while the offense struggled to put points on the
board despite being second in the Big Ten in yards and first in passing.
75. Miami (5-7)
CFN Score: 6.02
2006 Score: 10.33 2006 Ranking: 51
Was this a rebuilding year under Randy Shannon? Maybe, but there's
one big problem; the team got worse as the year went on. Is this really
Miami with the ACC's worst passing attack? Could the Miami Hurricanes
actually average a mere 20.6 points per game? The offense scored 16
points or fewer in five of the last six games bottoming out with an
all-time clunker in a 48-0 loss to Virginia in the final game in the
76. Nevada (6-7) CFN Score: 5.88
2006 Score: 10.54 2006 Ranking: 26
The Wolf Pack didn't beat anyone of note and ended up coming up with
one of the biggest dud performances of the bowl season with a 23-0 New
Mexico Bowl loss to New Mexico. At least the rest of the year was
thrilling eight games decided by eight points or fewer.
T77. Ohio (6-6) CFN Score: 5.57
2006 Score: 10.87 2006 Ranking: 45
The Bobcats had a better season than it might appear considering a
brutal early four-game losing streak all but killed bowl hopes. They
just couldn't come through with a three-point loss to Toledo and a bowl
hope-crushing loss to Akron. The defense wasn't consistent enough.
T77. Memphis (7-6) CFN Score: 5.57
2006 Score: 1.08 2006 Ranking: 108
The Tigers got to a bowl, but they only beat one decent team,
Southern Miss, and lost to Florida Atlantic in the New Orleans Bowl.
They won five games against a slew of lousy teams by a total of 13
points, but they also lost two by a total of six points.
79. Wyoming (5-7) CFN Score: 5.39
2006 Score: 8.44 2006 Ranking: 60
This appeared to be the hot underground team after a 23-3 pasting of
Virginia to start the season, and then everything went south after a 3-1
start losing six of the final seven games with the only win coming at
home against UNLV. The offense was the worst in the Mountain West, and
the D couldn't pick up the slack.
80. Western Michigan (5-7)
CFN Score: 5.18
2006 Score: 9.27 2006 Ranking: 55
A disastrously disappointing season took a major left turn after
pushing Central Michigan in a 34-31 loss. 11 days later, the Broncos
ruined Iowa's bowl hopes with a stunning 28-19 win, and then beat Temple
to salvage the year. WMU lost three games by a total of eight points.
81. Vanderbilt (5-7) CFN Score: 5.06
2006 Score: 4.88 2006 Ranking: 76
Once again, the Commodores came achingly close to getting bowl
eligible, and couldn't do it losing their last four games including a
25-24 heartbreaker to Tennessee and a 27-20 battle against Kentucky. The
only decent win came over South Carolina.
82. Arkansas State (5-7) CFN Score: 5.02
2006 Score: 5.68 2006 Ranking: 72
An interesting season for the Indians that resulted in a
disappointing 5-7 record, they were good enough to hang around with
Southern Miss, beat Memphis, and give Texas and Tennessee a push, but
the team wasn't the same after QB Corey Leonard got hurt.
83. Washington State (5-7)
CFN Score: 4.61
2006 Score: 10.83 2006 Ranking: 46
The Cougars once again couldn't come up with the wins needed to get
over the mediocre hump and into a bowl game, and that spelled the end of
the Bill Doba era. The passing game was the best in the Pac 10, but the
D allowed a league-high average of 32.42 points per game. The only win
over a bowl team came against UCLA.
84. Ole Miss (3-9) CFN Score: 4.49
2006 Score: 3.21 2006 Ranking: 89
To be fair to the Rebels, they played a nasty SEC slate and ended up
facing nine bowl teams. The defense and special teams rarely came
through, while the offense was way too inconsistent. Even so, the team
battled from start to finish. Now it'll have to do more than that under
85. UTEP (4-8)
CFN Score: 4.41
2006 Score: 3.20 2006 Ranking: 91
Yet another second half collapse killed a potentially solid season.
The Miners got the offense in place as the year went on, but the six
game losing streak to close out, helped by a miserable defense, has
soured the Mike Price era even further.
86. Stanford (4-8)
CFN Score: 4.29
2006 Score: -0.92 2006 Ranking: 114
4-8, schmore-and--eight. The record doesn't matter, and neither do
all the all issues on both sides of the ball. 2007 will be the year
Stanford beat USC, ruining hopes for a national title, and beat Cal to
close things out. The aggressive defense made the Cardinal tough to deal
with at times giving something for Jim Harbaugh to build on.
87. Toledo (5-7) CFN Score: 4.17
2006 Score: 4.66 2006 Ranking: 78
Rocket offense, amazing. Rocket defense, baaaaaad. While Jalen
Parmele and the rushing attack led the best offense in the MAC, the
defense gave up fewer than 30 points in just two games. Finishing 118th
in the nation in sacks and tackles for loss didn't help in losses to
Ball State and Bowling Green to end the year.
88. Miami University (6-7)
CFN Score: 4.13
2006 Score: 1.10 2006 Ranking: 107
One of the nation's strangest teams, Miami was just good enough to
get by on a strong MAC defense to get to the conference title game, but
just lousy enough on offense to blow key games to get to a bowl. Losing
to Temple and Ohio kept the RedHawks out of the post-season.
89. Eastern Michigan (4-8) CFN Score: 3.99
2006 Score: -0.47 2006 Ranking: 113
The Eagles might have only come up with a 4-8 season, but it was a
strong step forward for Jeff Genyk's program. The defense wasn't
anything special and the offense struggled to keep up the pace, but wins
over Western Michigan and Central Michigan in the final four weeks
turned things around.
90. Akron (4-8) CFN Score: 3.87
2006 Score: 4.07 2006 Ranking: 79
The Zip offense was stunningly bad, finishing 111th in the nation thanks
to shaky quarterback play. Temple and Buffalo might have been improved,
but you can't lose to both of them in the same year and hope to have a
good season. The Zips lost three games by a touchdown or less.
91. San Jose State
(5-7) CFN Score:
2006 Score: 9.23 2006 Ranking: 56
It wasn't a total drop-off after a breakthrough 2006, but it wasn't a
step forward. Injuries killed the rushing attack, but Adam Tafralis and
the passing game made up for problems elsewhere. The defense wasn't as
good as head coach Dick Tomey would've liked..
92. North Carolina (4-8) CFN Score: 3.43
2006 Score: 1.25 2006 Ranking: 106
This was supposed to be a stepping stone season in Butch Davis'
first year in Chapel Hill, and it was thanks to an inconsistent offense.
The defense turned out to be stunningly good, even if it didn't keep
points off the board in key situations. A very, very, very young team,
the Tar Heels lost six games by a touchdown or less. An experienced team
would've won at least half of those.
93. Buffalo (5-7) CFN Score: 3.27
2006 Score: -1.19 2006 Ranking: 105
Turner Gill did a fantastic job of making the program competitive
with a 5-3 MAC record and a run for a division title. The offense was
inconsistent and losses in two of the final three games ended things on
a down note, but 2007 was still a positive step forward.
94. Louisiana Tech (5-7) CFN Score: 2.98
2006 Score: -0.27 2006 Ranking: 112
Derek Dooley's first season wasn't all that bad with a 5-7 record,
but there weren't any impressive wins and the shining moment came in an
overtime loss to Hawaii in the second game of the year. The defense was
better than 2006, but it still struggled and couldn't overcome an
offense that lacked explosion.
95. Middle Tennessee (5-7) CFN Score: 2.86
2006 Score: 6.98 2006 Ranking: 68
The Blue Raiders started out an ugly 0-4 with losses to Florida
Atlantic and Western Kentucky, and was 1-5, but went on a nice second
half run to turn the season around before a stunning home loss to UL
Lafayette killed hopes of a winning season. The defensive line was
tremendous at getting into the backfield, but couldn't stop the run.
96. San Diego State (4-8) CFN Score: 2.71
2006 Score: 0.70 2006 Ranking: 110
Things haven't exactly gotten rolling in the Chuck Long era. The offense
was all Kevin O'Connell (who's gone now) and the defense was
non-existent throughout. The horrendous play from the defensive line
doomed the team from the start.
97. Colorado State (3-9) CFN Score: 2.35
2006 Score: 9.02 2006 Ranking: 53
The end of the Sonny Lubick era didn't exactly end with a bang as
his team started out the year with a disappointing overtime loss to
Colorado to kick off an 0-6 start. Winning the last two games prevented
an epic disaster, but the victories came against Georgia Southern and
98. Notre Dame (3-9)
CFN Score: 1.77
2006 Score: 13.76 2006 Ranking: 21
From the BCS to the most miserable season in the program's history,
the offense was the worst in America, the defense couldn't pick up the
slack, and the team wasn't even close against the better teams. Yes, the
Irish closed out with a two-game winning streak beating Duke and
Stanford, but the 43-year winning streak over Navy was stopped.
99. Temple (4-8)
CFN Score: 1.65
2006 Score: -3.32 2006 Ranking: 118
Few places would celebrate a 4-8 season, but Temple isn't like most
places. The Owls were in the hunt for a division title until late in the
year finishing 4-4 in MAC play, and the future is bright with head coach
Al Golden staying around for at least another year.
100. Army (3-9) CFN Score: 1.39
2006 Score: 2.48 2006 Ranking: 97
Losing seven six games to close out, including a 38-3 blasting by
Navy, ruined a decent 3-3 start. It didn't help that the schedule got
tougher as the year went on, but Stan Brock's second season at the helm
has to feature more offense and some semblance of run D.
101. Marshall (3-9)
CFN Score: 1.37
2006 Score: 3.30 2006 Ranking: 93
The Herd lost its first seven games of the year, bottoming out with a
48-35 home loss to New Hampshire, but the passing attack led the way to
a 3-2 second half including a dominant win over East Carolina.
102. Kent State (3-9) CFN Score: 1.09
2006 Score: -1.92 2006 Ranking: 115
The year started out promising with one of the MAC's best rushing
attacks, and then QB Julian Edelman went down and things went into the
tank with seven straight losses to close out. The team did all the
little things wrong with too many turnovers, a horrible punting game,
and no passing attack.
103. Tulane (4-8)
CFN Score: 1.01
2006 Score: -1.71 2006 Ranking: 114
Bob Toledo's first year under the helm didn't feature much of his
signature passing offense, but Matt Forte ran for 2,000 yards while the
team won two of its final three games.
104. Baylor (3-9)
CFN Score: 0.74
2006 Score: 2.75 2006 Ranking: 93
The move to a Texas Tech-like passing game didn't yield any real results
over the last two years, and Guy Morriss was shown the door. BU was the
worst team in the Big 12 by far as it failed to come closer than 20
points against anyone in league play after a 3-1 start.
105. New Mexico State CFN Score: 0.72
2006 Score: 3.63 2006 Ranking: 83
The program didn't take a step forward in Hal Mumme's third season with
two wins coming against SE Louisiana and Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The best
win of the year came over UTEP, but the Aggies went 1-7 in WAC play. At
least the passing game put up a ton of yards.
106. UNLV (2-10) CFN Score: 0.67
2006 Score: -0.02 2006 Ranking: 111
Will Mike Sanford's program ever turn the corner? Going young in key
placed didn't help the overall consistency averaging just 18 points per
game. The defense couldn't pick up the slack even with Beau Bell
tackling everything in sight.
107. Utah State (2-10) CFN Score: 0.33
2006 Score: -2.74 2006 Ranking: 116
The veteran Aggie team started off the year 0-10 before beating New
Mexico State and Idaho to close things out. The offense never got going
and the defensive line never made enough plays, but the team wasn't a
miserable as it was in 2006.
108. Syracuse (2-10) CFN Score: 0.21
2006 Score: 3.72 2006 Ranking: 82
The Greg Robinson era isn't exactly taking off. A stunning road win
over Louisville aside, things couldn't have been much worst for the
nation's fourth-worst scoring offense. The lines were miserable
finishing second-to-last in the country in both sacks and sacks allowed.
109. UL Lafayette (3-9) CFN Score: -0.20
2006 Score: 5.02 2006 Ranking: 74
The Ragin' Cajuns weren't awful in Sun Belt play, going 3-4 with a
nice win over Middle Tennessee, but going 0-5 in non-conference play
with an embarrassing 38-17 home loss to McNeese State killed hopes for
a decent year.
T110. Iowa State (3-9)
CFN Score: -0.88
2006 Score: 2.40 2006 Ranking: 57
The cupboard was left a half-empty from the Dan McCarney era, but
there were some strong moments in Gene Chizik's first season. 3-9 isn't
a plus, but winning two of the last three games, and beating Iowa,
T110. Rice (3-9)
CFN Score: -0.88
2006 Score: 8.47 2006 Ranking: 59
A year after a breakout bowl campaign, Todd Graham was off to Tulsa
and it took most of the year for David Bailiff to get his offense
rolling. The wins weren't there, but the passing attack averaged close
to 300 yards per game with QB Chase Clement growing into a star to watch
out for next year.
112. UAB (2-10)
CFN Score: -0.94
2006 Score: 3.20 2006 Ranking: 96
The Blazers weren't as bad as the ranking. Neil Callaway had his
team playing hard in his first season on the job, but the nation's worst
run defense, and no pass rush, proved to be the downfall.
113. Northern Illinois (2-10) CFN Score: -1.24
2006 Score: 8.35 2006 Ranking: 63
Joe Novak didn't exactly go out with a bang. The offense never
showed up, the defense was mediocre, and the team couldn't come up with
the close wins losing five by a touchdown or less.
114. Minnesota (1-11) CFN Score: -1.42
2006 Score: 7.09 2006 Ranking: 67
First year head coach Tim Brewster didn't have a lot to work with,
but the team shouldn't have been 1-11 bad. With the worst defense in the
country, Gopher football hit an all-time low with the only win coming in
an overtime shootout over Miami University. Losing to Bowling Green and
Florida Atlantic don't look as bad in hindsight, but a home gaffe
against North Dakota State has Brewster on the hot seat going into 2008.
115. Duke (1-11)
CFN Score: -1.50
2006 Score: -5.27 2006 Ranking: 119
At least the Blue Devils aren't dead last again. One miraculous,
last second defensive stand to beat Northwestern prevented a winless
season, but facing eight bowl teams was way too much to overcome. New
head coach David Cutcliffe has plenty of work to do.
116. SMU (2-10)
CFN Score: -2.04
2006 Score: 6.56 2006 Ranking: 69
The underground, grass roots hot team going into the season, the
Mustang defense never showed up on the way to ten game losing streak, a
fired head coach, and a new direction for the program. It might be a
step backward to take a giant leap ahead if June Jones takes over.
117. FIU (1-11) CFN Score: -3.30
2006 Score: -2.98 2006 Ranking: 117
Mario Cristobal's first season was on the way to being a complete
and utter disaster until a 38-19 year-ending win over North Texas
provided a little bit of hope for the future. Getting the nation's worst
scoring offense off the ground will be a start.
118. North Texas (2-10) CFN Score: -3.51
2006 Score: 1.50 2006 Ranking: 104
It might not have been a successful first season under new head
coach Todd Dodge, but it sure was fun with a high-octane passing attack
that came up with a few huge, huge performances. Being the only
team to lose to FIU killed the overall score, and the only D-I win came
against UL Monroe.
119. Idaho (1-11)
CFN Score: -3.52
2006 Score: 1.69 2006 Ranking: 101
It wasn't exactly a stellar first year for Robb Akey, who went winless
in WAC play and only came up with a 20-13 win over FCS Cal Poly. The
only team in FBS (D-I to the rest of us) without a win over a D-I team,
there's no place to go but up. On the plus side, the team wasn't a total
CFN Final 2007 Rankings -
The Top Ten
- CFN Final 2007 Rankings -
No. 11 to 25
- CFN Final 2006 Rankings