Well, UT's loss to UCLA last weekend officially turned the state from a two-team tango to a one-man show.
The Longhorns were wildly woeful against the Bruins, turning the ball over multiple times — even unforced, occasionally — and failing to capitalize on any number of UCLA miscues. And while TCU didn't run SMU out of Ford Stadium Friday night, the 17-point win was still convincing enough to keep the Frogs in the top spot. For the first time all season, we have a consensus. A perfect 60 points for TCU, and the Horned Frogs will be heavy, heavy favorites in every game until they travel to Utah later this year.
The rest of the state has turned into a logjam. Several of our voters kept the Longhorns in the second spot after the loss, mainly because the remaining eight teams have yet to really do anything to distinguish themselves. Those points were critical, because still undefeated A&M, even coming off a bye week, made a strong charge for second. This week, when A&M plays Oklahoma State on Thursday, will likely decide A&M's fate: A win moves it to No 2, a loss drops it below Texas Tech.
Speaking of those Red Raiders, they're back above SMU after the Ponies' hard-fought loss to the Horned Frogs. Baylor, Houston and UTEP all won, but none of them could gain any traction into the state's top five, which appears to be more or less set after the season-ending injury to Case Keenum. Then again, if Texas loses this week to Oklahoma and two weeks from now to Nebraska, it'll be interesting to see where DCTF voters put it.
DCTF 2010 Texas College Football Week 5 Power Poll
|#||School||Points (1st-place votes)||Previous|
|1||TCU Horned Frogs (4-0/0-0)||Points: 60 (6)||1|
|Tom Sullivan: The defense looked ordinary, but you know things have come a long way when the so-called "experts" say TCU didn't play very well despite winning by 17 points.|
|2||Texas Longhorns (3-1/1-0)||Points: 46||2|
|Dennis Hall: It wasn't "Rout 66", but it was arguably UT's worst loss in the Mack Brown era. And now comes Oklahoma and Nebraska. Yikes.|
|3||Texas A&M Aggies (3-0/0-0)||Points: 45||4|
|Travis Stewart: The task is pretty simple: Beat Oklahoma State this weekend, and you're almost assured of second place in the Power Poll. But two things will be tested Thursday: The defense's ability to play against a talented offense, and Jerrod Johnson's fortitude after nearly throwing away a win against FIU two weeks ago.|
|4||Texas Tech Red Raiders (2-1/0-1)||Points: 39||5|
|Travis Stewart: Tech's bye couldn't have come at a better time. The offense was struggling, Potts looked uncomfortable and the coaches seemed like they were still trying to figure out what they had, talent-wise. I expect a focused, efficient squad against Iowa State. And, for what it's worth, I expect the coaches to cave at some point this year and put in Steven Scheffield.|
|5||SMU Mustangs (2-2/1-0)||Points: 38||3|
|Brad Hilliard: The Mustangs showed a national TV audience they aren't going to give up without a fight anymore.|
|6||Houston Cougars (3-1/2-0)||Points: 31||6|
|Adam Hochfelder: Nice win with the third-string QB. I'm not sure how long the Coogs can survive without Keenum, but step one was last week vs. the Green Wave.|
|7||Baylor Bears (3-1/0-0)||Points: 28||7|
|Dennis Hall: If the Bears are going to be bowl eligible, they need to win this week's Big 12 opener against the North's worst team, Kansas.|
|8||UTEP Miners (3-1/1-1)||Points: 25||8|
Travis Stewart: All the talk of a C-USA title is highly premature. The Miners' wins — New Mexico State, Pine Bluff and Memphis — have come against a combined 2-8 record. And if you can see UTEP hanging within 17 points of TCU like SMU did, then you're a trusting man. I expect the Ponies aren't pleased about the Miners' suddenly-trendy title talk.
|9||Rice Owls (1-3/0-0)||Points: 12||9|
|Travis Stewart: Rice's defensive unit takes another hit to the chin and picks up yet another vote for the most under-appreciated squad in Texas. This offense can't move the ball, which is leaving that already-gassed squad out to dry for whole games. As the season goes on, opposing scores will get higher and higher.|
|10||North Texas Mean Green (1-3/0-0)||Points: 6||10|
|Travis Stewart: In a shocking, shocking turn of events, UNT has discovered that a very simply formula — running the ball and playing defense — can translate into wins. Gasp! Somewhere, Darrell Dickey is throwing up his hands and nodding knowingly.|
ABOUT THE PANEL:
> Adam Hochfelder is the Executive Director of DCTF and several other IMG College properties
> Dennis Hall is a managing editor with DCTF
> Travis Stewart is a managing editor with DCTF
> Brad Hilliard is the operations coordinator for DCTF and several other IMG College properties
> Tom Sullivan is an account executive for DCTF
> Rick Epstein is an account executive for DCTF