Let’s take a deeper look at who made it inside the Top 25 and whether the Midshipmen really deserved a spot.
First, we will examine Navy’s resume in order to use it as a reference in making the argument.
The Midshipmen are 6-1 on the year. Their lone loss came during an away, Thursday night game, against the Memphis Tigers. This same Memphis team is 7-1 including a win against an SEC opponent (Ole Miss) and only loss was by two points on an away game (Temple). The Midshipmen have an average margin of victory of 24.5 points and have scored over 40 points in four of their games for a total average of 37.9 per game. Additionally, they lead to country in rushing with an average of over 350 yards per game.
Consecutive games scoring at least 30 points:— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) October 28, 2019
Alabama, Ohio State, SMU 8
Air Force, Baylor, Louisiana Tech, Ohio, Oregon, UAB, UCLA, Virginia Tech, Washington State 3
The argument against them is that Navy has only played seven games, vice the majority of the rest of the Top 25 having played eight. Also, the Midshipmen do have a loss to a conference opponent who, themselves, are no longer undefeated. Lastly, their strength of schedule isn’t amazing by any means.
We should start of by focusing on the bottom five teams in the AP’s ranking. This will keep us realistic in our approach and not go down too many rabbit holes.
25. San Diego State (7-1)
24. Memphis (7-1)
23. Wake Forest (6-1)
22. Kansas State (5-2)
21. Boise State (6-1)
We’ll start from No. 21 and work our way up. Boise State is actually one of the least deserving teams at out these five based on their resume alone. They beat Florida State in the season opener by five. Initially, the win appeared impressive. However, we now know that the Seminoles aren’t really any good. The Broncos beat Air Force, but it was in Boise and were losing at halftime. Furthermore, they beat Hawaii, but still gave up 37 points at home. Their lone loss came last week to BYU, who has been incredibly inconsistent this season. Overall, No. 21 is way too high. If Navy had the “Boise State” name, there’s no doubt they would be in the Top 25.
Kansas State beat Oklahoma last week. They also have wins over Mississippi State and TCU. These are all good teams. The Wildcats have proven they can beat anyone and deserve to be where they are.
Don’t get me started on Wake Forest. Okay, I’ll start. The ACC is bad. Wake Forest has wins over Utah State, Rice, North Carolina, Elon, Boston College, and Florida State. If you exclude the Elon game, their average win margin is only seven points. They’ve had three of their six wins be decided by three or fewer points. AND, their loss was at home to Louisville, a team that many considered to be in a massive rebuilding year. Considering all this, there is no way they should be ranked above the Midshipmen.
Yes, Memphis deserve to be ranked ahead of Navy. They won. It’s simple.
Lastly, the San Diego State Aztecs beat Weber State, at home, 6-0, on two field goals. Do I need to say more? The fact that they are 7-1 is what carried them into the Top 25. Also, wins over UCLA, Wyoming, and San Jose State are distracting and seem like “quality wins”.
On Friday, the Midshipmen travel up to UConn to take on the Huskies. While this should be a smooth way for Navy to improve to 7-1, I have a weird feeling I should start writing another one of these articles when the Mids are inevitably left out of the AP Poll, again. Maybe the first College Football Playoff rankings that come out next Tuesday (Nov. 5) will have Navy inside their Top 25.