Keeping Score

C-USA Top 5: The worst week EVER

North Texas quarterback Mason Fine (6) recovers his own fumble in front of Florida defensive lineman Joey Ivie (91) after mishandling the snap during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday.
North Texas quarterback Mason Fine (6) recovers his own fumble in front of Florida defensive lineman Joey Ivie (91) after mishandling the snap during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday. Associated Press

Congratulations Conference USA, you just had your worst week ever.

This weekly C-USA Top 5 blog is typically intended to rank the top teams in C-USA, but it can't be ignored how badly the league's members represented themselves a week ago.

All the bad mojo started Friday night when the Rice band made an ill-advised attempt at making fun of Baylor's Title IX issues surrounding the football program's sexual-assault scandal. The band formed an “IX” and made the shape of a star for Kenneth Starr, Baylor's former president.

The Rice band has a history of trolling opponents, but it stepped over the line on a sensitive topic.

Final score: Baylor 38, Rice 10.

Later that night, UTSA put a scare into Arizona State, but fell short 32-28. It was another case of a C-USA team coming up just shy against a Power 5 program.

On Saturday, it got worse.

Western Kentucky held off Miami-Ohio on the road, 31-24, and Middle Tennessee picked up a 41-21 road win over another MAC opponent, Bowling Green.

The good news ended there.

Humbled Herd: Akron thoroughly embarrassed Marshall on its home field by the score of 65-38.

The Thundering Herd (1-1) was again considered a candidate to compete for a C-USA title this season, but that seems unlikely at the moment.

Terrible Owls: Kansas State ran roughshod over FAU 63-7 in Manhattan, Kansas.

FAU (1-2) has consistently fallen short of expectations on the football field since joining C-USA. This year's squad may be the worst yet.

FIU blues: UMass topped Florida International 21-13.

FIU (0-3) always seems to make the keep the score respectable for about two or three quarters, but eventually relents to the inevitable.

Woeful 49ers: Eastern Michigan cruised to a 37-19 win at Charlotte Saturday. The Eagles led 34-6 after three quarters.

Charlotte (1-2) is possibly the worst team in all of FBS. It's going to be a long road to relevance for the 49ers.

Defenseless Bulldogs: Louisiana Tech (1-2) gave up 666 yards of offense in a 59-45 loss at Texas Tech.

After showing signs of promise in a 21-20 loss in the opener at Arkansas, it's back to the drawing board on defense for Louisiana Tech.

AWOL Miners: Army demolished UTEP 66-14 with 600 yards of offense.

Army (3-0) is a much improved football team, but this result may have been the most stunning of them all. UTEP was thought to be a team on the rise to start the season.

Gator bait: North Texas didn't put up much of a fight in a 32-0 loss at Florida.

North Texas (1-2) hoped to have an improved offense this season under first-year head coach Seth Littrell, but the Mean Green managed a pitiful 53 yards of offense Saturday.

ODU stumbles: North Carolina State made it look easy in a 49-22 win over the Monarchs.

ODU has been close to breaking through as a bowl team, but it's hard to see six wins this season.

USM setback: Troy held off Southern Miss 37-31 in Hattiesburg, handing USM its first loss.

Southern Miss (2-1) is certainly one of the better teams in the conference, but it has yet to play up to its potential this season. Even in the 44-35 win at Kentucky in the season opener, USM stumbled around in the first half. Troy was the better football team Saturday.

Mercifully, here is your C-USA Top 5:

1. Western Kentucky (2-1): The Hilltoppers move up one spot this week after avoiding a major letdown at Miami-Ohio. WKU is a seven-point favorite over Vanderbilt in Bowling Green on Saturday.

2. Southern Miss (2-1): The Golden Eagles have yet to play a complete game this season. They travel to El Pass as a 10-point favorite.

3. Louisiana Tech (1-2): Even though the Bulldogs have a losing record, they're still going to be a handful in conference play. They travel to MTSU Saturday.

4. Middle Tennessee (2-1): The Blue Raiders are still unproven with a couple of wins over poor competition. We'll find out more against La. Tech on Saturday.

5. Marshall (1-1): I had to put somebody here. On Saturday, Marshall hosts No. 3 Louisville. If Saturday's score against Akron is any indication, the Cardinals may win by 130 points.

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