Texas 47: Handful of national championship contenders remain in Texas

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The Texas 47 places every college football program in the state of Texas into one of six tiers following Week 9. Five national title contenders remain in the Lone Star State. This list is put together by Cory Hogue and Mike Craven each Tuesday morning of the college football season. 

National contenders

TCU (8-0) - A 10-point win over West Virginia keeps the Horned Frogs undefeated and in the driver's seat to reach the Big 12 title game. 

Angelo State (9-0) - The next two weeks are critical for the Rams to earn the ability to remain in Texas throughout the playoffs.

Mary Hardin-Baylor (7-1) - The Crusaders were idle in Week 9.

Trinity (8-0) - The Tigers need one win in the next two weeks to secure a share of their second straight SAA title and an automatic bid to the playoffs.

Trinity Valley (7-1) - The Cardinals have a classic trap game this week after securing home field advantage throughout the SWJCFC playoffs.

Conference contenders

UTSA (6-2) - A much-needed off week hopefully healed the Roadrunners enough to make a run at another Conference USA crown. 

North Texas (5-4) - A road win over Western Kentucky puts the Mean Green on track to reach the C-USA title game and earn a rematch against rival UTSA. 

Abilene Christian (5-3) - The Wildcats should’ve been in this tier last week. ACU is a legitimate contender to earn the ASUN-WAC automatic bid and a spot in the playoffs.

UIW (8-1) - The Cardinals offensive and defensive line are big, athletic, and nasty. The rest of the team feeds off their edginess.

Prairie View A&M (5-3) - The Panthers used a big second half to avoid the trap game and set up a showdown against Alcorn State on Friday night on ESPNU.

Hardin-Simmons (7-1) - HSU played its best half of the season to keep its playoff hopes alive. However, the Cowboys need decisive wins in their final two games of the regular season.

Texas Wesleyan (7-2) - The Rams are in a four-way tie for first place in a Sooner Athletic Conference with more parity than expected this year.

Stock rising

Baylor (5-3) - Richard Reese and a greedy defense that turned Texas Tech over five times in Lubbock has the Bears back on track. 

Houston (5-3) - Don't look now but the Cougars are on a three-game winning streak and looking like the team that entered the year with conference title expectations. 

Lamar (1-7) - Lamar needed that win over Nicholls. The relief of ending the losing streak was evident and could lead to another victory this year.

Sam Houston (5-2) - The Bearkats have an opportunity to finish their final season in FCS with seven consecutive wins.

Midwestern State (5-4) - MSU played its most complete game of the season against a solid Western Oregon squad. However, the Mustangs need all three phases to click against A&M-Kingsville this week.

East Texas Baptist (3-5) - ETBU deserves credit for overcoming internal strife and finding a way to defeat TLU.

Southwestern (3-5) - The Pirates earned their first road win of the season against Austin College. Southwestern needs to build momentum at home this week.

Kilgore (5-3) - The Rangers must defeat Blinn and have Navarro defeat Tyler to earn a spot in the SWJCFC playoffs.


Rice (4-4) - A disappointing loss to Charlotte makes the road to a bowl bid tougher for the Owls. 

Texas Tech (4-4) - A home loss to Baylor was a missed opportunity for the Red Raiders. 

Texas (5-3) - The Longhorns can play Big 12 spoiler with Kansas State and TCU up next. 

SMU (4-4) - The loss of quarterback Preston Stone to a collarbone injury dampened excitement following a win over South Florida. 

Texas State (3-5) - An idle week hopefully jump starts the Bobcats. 

Tarleton (5-3) - Tarleton’s offense is struggling and averaging 23 points in its last three games. Nine turnovers have been the biggest reason for the difficulties.

Texas Southern (4-4) - TSU has an opportunity to shock the FCS world when Deion Sanders brings Jackson State for a visit on Saturday.

UTPB (4-5) - Seven of the Falcons nine games this season have been decided by seven points or less. Their last three losses are by a combined five points.

Austin College (1-7) - The Kangaroos are one of the most improved sub-FBS teams since the beginning of the season.

Sul Ross State (3-5) - The Lobos can secure fourth place in the ASC with wins in their final two games, which would be a fantastic accomplishment for interim coach Barry Derickson.

Texas Lutheran (3-5) - A road win over Southwestern would give the Bulldogs a nice boost heading into the offseason.

SAGU (5-3) - The Lions defense has surrendered 24 points during their three-game winning streak.

Navarro (5-3) - The Bulldogs can secure the third seed in the SWJCFC playoffs with a win.

Stock falling

Texas A&M (3-5) -The Aggies have lost four straight but appeared to find a quarterback in true freshman Conner Weigman. 

UTEP (4-5) - A home loss to Middle Tennessee State puts the Miners in a tough spot. 

Stephen F. Austin (5-4) - The loss to Utah Tech is inexplicable and was the final nail in the Lumberjacks playoff hopes.

Texas A&M-Commerce (5-3) - The Lions have been better than expected against FCS competition, but the Lions received a reality check against a bigger and more physical team.

Houston Christian (2-6) - HCU needs another conference win to avoid the basement. The Huskies game against McNeese in Week 11 is their best opportunity.

Texas A&M-Kingsville (7-2) - The Javelinas defense is tremendous, and they have good skill players on offense, but the offensive line remains a work in progress.

West Texas A&M (5-4) - The Buffs are 21-12 at home and 11-15 on the road during the Hunter Hughes era. 

Howard Payne (6-2) - HPU still needs a win over HSU or UMHB to show it has reached the top tier of the ASC. However, the Yellow Jackets have proven they are close.

Tyler (5-3) - The Apaches inability to establish a rushing attack (-33 yards) led to being swept by rival Kilgore.


McMurry (1-8) - Some coaches prefer a late bye week, but the War Hawks needed this week much earlier in the season.

Wayland Baptist (2-6) - The Pioneers have been trending towards the basement for a while before arriving.

Texas College (1-8) - The Steers put up a decent fight against Texas Wesleyan.

Blinn (3-5) - A loss to Northeastern Oklahoma A&M places the Buccaneers in the basement.

Cisco (3-6) - Cisco lost five of its final six contests to end the season. The offense averaged nine points per game against SWJCFC opponents.

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