There is a lot of action this week in our college football conference rating system.
The Mountain West conference -- which has held the No. 5 ranking throughout the season -- has fallen behind the WAC. The main culprit for the downfall is Utah. With back-to-back losses (one being out of conference) the Utes have lost the resume of an upper echelon squad with AP voters and the computers. Fifty percent of our system weighs the strength of the top of each conference, so without a justifiable replacement as its number two school Utah’s collapse has had a large adverse effect on its conference.
The WAC, led by possible BCS buster Boise State and the perpetually underrated Nevada, attains its highest ranking of the season this week. The common knock on the WAC is the strength of the bottom of the conference. This is not entirely true relative to its peers. In fact, only two of the WAC’s nine members (22.2%) have an average computer ranking below 87. Compare this to the Mountain West which has four of its nine members (44.4%) with an average computer ranking below 94.
The Big 12 is the other big leaper this week as it overtakes both the Big Ten and Pac-10 for the number two spot in the rankings. The Big 12 is still devoid of a top eight school in the AP poll, but its computer ranking average is beginning to pull away from all other conferences. Kansas is its only member whose average computer ranking is outside the upper half of the FBS.
It should be noted the Big 12, Pac-10, and Big Ten are within one point of each other, which in this system is more or less a dead heat. These three conferences are locked into rankings 2-4, but their order can absolutely be debated.
For a brief recap on how we rank the conferences click here.