Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings, Week 4

Hot Beef Take

Not a lot to talk about this week, as half the league took the week off.  There was one though who made a huge statement.  That will be noted below, let’s get right to it.

  1. North Dakota State (2-0), previously #1.  And here’s the team stooping down. Though, Robert Morris has beaten perennial Pioneer power, Dayton and an Ohio Valley bottom feeder. That other game, they were dismantle by Youngstown State.  Expect the same here.  Up next: vs. Robert Morris.
  2. South Dakota State (3-0), previously #2.  This is precisely where everybody saw the Jackrabbits before the season started. The offense is as advertised; a freakish, high-scoring dynamo. This might be the best offense in FCS not named James Madison.  Up next: bye.
  3. Youngstown State (2-1), previously #3.  Hmm? For all the issues the Penguins are having off the field, they are having none between the lines. Last week, they absolutely destroyed Central Connecticut State. It’s going to be interesting to see if these Northeast Conference non-conference opponents have them prepared for MVFC action.  Up next: bye.
  4. Western Illinois (2-0), previously #4.  Okay, I jumped the gun last week. Western Illinois actually had the week off. I assure you that they travel to Coastal Carolina this week. Can the Leathernecks pump up enough to beat the FBS’ Chanticleers?  Up next: at Coastal Carolina.
  5. South Dakota (3-0), previously #6. The team most pundits picked as their potent Cinderella before the season began has not disappointed. In fact, this Cinderella has all but kicked the entire Homecoming Court from the dance and sent the pumpkin carriage home before midnight. The Coyotes are good. Really, really good. Forget the 70 point win at Drake or the FBS win at Bowling Green. The 45-7 stomping they put on North Dakota was the final trumpet in announcing their arrival. Their future is now…you’ve all been warned!  Up next: bye.
  6. Illinois State (2-0), previously #7.  Mentioned last week that they’d done nothing wrong to warrant dropping. So what did they do? They went down the road to Eastern Illinois and crushed their rivals! The Mid-American Classic has a long history of nail biters, but all the Redbirds did was make those memories history. They need to keep this momentum going because their last five weeks on the schedule are harder than Chinese algebra being taught in a Turkish prison.  Up next: at Missouri State.
  7. Northern Iowa (1-2), previously #5.  It’s almost with reluctance that the Panthers are slotted here. Their record should drop them down another spot, but the schedule has been brutally tough. Former administration did them no favors choosing an FBS opponent who plays the power spread, then a triple option team, followed by a road game against a near elite-level FCS spread team at elevation. For whatever reason, the offense flopped this last game. The defense was stout after adjustments were made, which is typical. Scary thing is the kicking game and if it doesn’t get fixed, the Panthers could see another losing season filled with close losses.  Up next: bye.
  8. Southern Illinois (2-0), previously #8.  Southern Illinois helped complete the three game weekly sweep of the Ohio Valley this last week when they beat Southeast Missouri State. It was a nice win for the confidence, but that’s likely over this coming week. Anybody who watched what UCLA had to face on television should be praying for the Salukis defense.  Up next: at Memphis.
  9. Missouri State (1-2), previously #10. Some love for the Bears, I’m not completely cold-hearted. They, too, were part of the MVFC triumvirate who beat the OVC back with a big stick and a loud voice. It wasn’t easy, even against Murray State, but the result was a win and that’s all that really matters. A win to start conference play before everybody else would create insane amounts of confidence.  Up next: vs. Illinois State.
  10. Indiana State (0-3), previously #9.  Doesn’t seem fair to drop the Sycamores down to the cellar after taking FBS transitioner, Liberty, to a 42-41 loss. In the end though, they’re the last team in the MVFC without a victory, my hand is forced. And they’re going to sit here next week, because they cannot improve on the donut this week.  Up next: bye.