College Football News is slowly unveiling its 2006 college football rankings. SMU comes in at 91. That is ahead of Tulane, Rice, UNT and Arkansas State. Everyone else SMU plays is obviously ranked higher.
Couple of interesting points. CFN predicts SMU to win five games, matching last year's total. I think that is low; I think they simply took the number of games against teams they have ranked lower and added SHSU and moved on. I think there is a risk in doing that. The difference between the number 1 team in the country is great; the difference between a top 10 team and a top 25 team is big; but the difference between a top 75 team and a top 90 team no matter whose rankings you use is not significant.
Second, CFN lists SMU's strengths as running back and defensive line. Hard to disagree with that. They list weaknesses as offensive line and secondary. I can't disagree with the secondary comment, but I think the offensive line is as good if not better than it has been in years. I probably would have substituted QB as a weakness, because that is the biggest question mark on the whole team.
Before the 2005 season, the same web site had SMU at 114. The website also had a "pre-preseason rankings," back in January 2006 which had SMU at 90. I don't know what has happened between January and July to push Akron over the top.
As an aside, Sagarin, ended last season with SMU ranked 88th.
Tulane, Rice, UNT and Arkansas State are consistently ranked below SMU in every publication. Most publications usually add at least another team to that list such as Marshall, ECU or UAB.