By TexasFootball.com staff
All in all, it was a fairly dark week in our proud state.
The Ags collapsed again. Tech never even showed up against Iowa State. Baylor got dismantled by Oklahoma State. SMU was similarly dismissed by Tulsa. Rice, UTEP and UNT all lost again. The Dallas Cowboys got hammered by the hated Eagles. The Texans won, but lost yet another defensive player for the year with an injury. The Rangers lost their second-straight World Series. We even hit and passed the original start date of the NBA season. If it weren't for Houston, UT and TCU, it could have been arguably the worst sports weekend in state history.
Now the DCTF crew has to try and make sense of it all in this week's Power Poll — an exercise in maddening frustration that netted five completely different submissions, with almost no similarities. Both SMU and UTEP were unanimous selections at No. 7 and 8, respectively, but other than that, it was a mish-mash of the haves and have-nots, with every team showing a little bit of both.
Houston finally stands alone at No. 1, however, after A&M's painful loss and Tech's befuddling stumble against Iowa State. Get used to the placement — UH still has another two weeks before it sees anyone with fangs (SMU), and the Big XII schools are descending into the pits of conference play, where it appears few — if any — will survive unscathed. TCU, which still has a hurdle in Boise State, sits at third, but its losses to Baylor and SMU don't look as hot as they did about three weeks ago. Texas, however, sits at a firm No. 2 — it's only losses are to the Oklahoma schools, and while OU has its own blemish to bemoan, it's impossible to argue the Sooners' talent.
A&M falls to fourth, its lowest placement of the year, and the upcoming schedule — OU, KSU, KU and UT — offers just one sure-fire win. Tech, now mired at fifth, has an even tougher path to tread. Baylor's is only slightly easier, if the Bears live up to potential.
Another ugly loss for SMU keeps it at seventh, while UTEP holds steady at eight after a stumble of its own. Rice and UNT, in a race for last at the moment, both stick at their positions after losing as well.
DCTF's 2011 Texas College Power Poll — Week 9
|#||School||Points (1st-place votes)||Previous week|
|1||Houston Cougars (8-0/4-0)||Points: 50 (5)||2|
|Travis Stewart: It remains true that UH has yet to play anyone of any note at all. However, with how bad just about every defense in Texas has been at times — yes, even the Longhorns occasionally — is it really so hard to imagine Case Keenum gunning through every roster the state can offer? Consider that I can probably count his total number of bad games on one hand.|
|2||Texas Longhorns (5-2/2-2)||Points: 43||6|
|Adam Hochfelder: I'm not sure if Texas is that good or Kansas is that bad. 590 total yards of offense compared to 46. 46-plus minutes time of possession compared to 14. 43-0 was not that close. Could Kansas even beat New Mexico? Anyway, I can’t blame Texas for playing a terrible team and throttling them, as they should. Their real tests await.|
|3||TCU Horned Frogs (5-2/2-0)||Points: 25||5|
|Tom Sullivan: I’m all about head-to-head matchups, and Baylor beat the Frogs weeks ago. But I can’t possibly put a team giving up 40 points every game (or so it seems) in the No. 3 spot. The Frogs are gradually getting better, and the Boise tilt next week might be must-see.|
|4||Texas A&M Aggies (5-3/3-2)||Points: 37||1|
|Travis Stewart: I really only see five options for why A&M is fading in the second half of so many games; A) the staff is getting outcoached, B), the players have a habit of losing focus, C) poor conditioning, D) the collapses are in the kids' heads, or E) a combination of all five. And really, none of those have to make you feel confident, because there's not a whole lot you can do about any of them in mid-season.|
|5||Texas Tech Red Raiders (5-3/2-3)||Points: 30||3|
|Brad Hilliard: This team is a complete enigma right now. The contrast between their efforts against Oklahoma and Iowa State is staggering.|
|6||Baylor Bears (4-3/1-3)||Points: 27||4|
|Greg Tepper: The Bears have given up more than 600 yards of offense in its last two games. For comparison’s sake, consider that TCU hasn’t gained more than 600 yards in a game since 2007.|
|7||SMU Mustangs (5-3/3-2)||Points: 20||7|
|Greg Tepper: Things looked so promising for J.J. McDermott after the scintillating performances against TCU and Central Florida, but since then, he’s thrown six interceptions and no touchdowns.|
|8||UTEP Miners (4-4/2-3)||Points: 15||8|
|Travis Stewart: If you're Mike Price, you essentially have to forget about what's happened the previous eight weeks and focus your kids on the remaining four. There aren't any bunnies in the rundown of Rice, East Carolina, Tulsa and Central Florida, but two wins in there is not impossible. In a year with next to no experienced stars, isn't making a bowl — regardless of who you beat — a pretty fine accomplishment?|
|9||Rice Owls (2-6/1-4)||Points: 8||9|
|Adam Hochfelder: Was Rob Ryan coaching the Owls defense? Nine touchdown passes reminded me of the SWC days with David Klingler flinging the ball around against some old Owls squads of the late 80’s and early 90’s.|
|10||North Texas Mean Green (3-6/2-3)||Points: 7||10|
|Greg Tepper: We’ve got a full-fledged quarterback situation in Denton, as neither Andrew McNulty nor Derek Thompson have seized the open starter’s spot. Maybe they should just direct snap it to Lance Dunbar.|
ABOUT THE PANEL:
> Travis Stewart is the managing editor of DCTF
> Greg Tepper is the associate editor of DCTF
> Adam Hochfelder is the Executive Director of DCTF and several other IMG College properties
> Brad Hilliard is the operations coordinator for DCTF and several other IMG College properties
> Tom Sullivan is an account executive for DCTF