The Bottom 10 Inspirational Thought of the Week:
Over the rainbow a Kansas tornado
can twist up a little girl's head.
Aunt Em's on relief and the tinman's a thief
and even the wizard can't wake the dead.
La la la la la la la la la.
-- "Magdalene Lane," Don McLean
Here at Bottom 10 headquarters, located in the coat closet of the laboratory where Heather Dinich calculates her College Football Playoff scenarios, we, like the playoff selection committee, rode out the storm of Week 11 like Lieutenant Dan atop the mast of Forrest Gump's shrimp boat.
One by one, top-15 teams lost games in which they were favored by 20-plus points. No one seemed willing or worthy to snatch the crown being dangled before them. Meanwhile, our dilemma at the bottom of the charts was the same ... sort of.
Dangled in front of our teams was a chance to sit atop the bottom of the standings. But where the playoff hopefuls kept inexplicably losing, the Bottom 10's hopeless kept impossibly winning. FIU once held down the No. 1 spot, but won. FAU took it over, but won ... over Rice ... who took it over and then on Saturday they won, too.
Honestly, it gets a little insulting, not to mention lonely. We cry into the night, "Does no one want to hang out with us?" Then, just as reach the point of desperation, an old friend pops up out of nowhere to greet us. Like, literally.
— Ryan McGee (@ESPNMcGee) November 15, 2016
With apologies to L. Frank Baum and Steve Harvey, here's this week's Bottom 10.
Yes, Kansas, the 2015 Bottom 10 runners-up, have suddenly made a late dash to the top of the bottom thanks to its loss in Pillow Fight of the Century 2: Electric Boogaloo. KU fell into the funnel of the Iowa State Cyclones in the Auntie Em Bowl. The good news in Lawrence, as we explained, is that the 2016 trend is for teams to not occupy this spot for very long. The better news is that college basketball has started.
Joining Kansas as the only other one-win FBS team are the Bulldogs, who spent their off week hiring former Cal head coach Jeff Tedford. At the news conference, the Fresno State alum and former QB said "I do bleed Bulldog Red because I've been here." Coach, anyone who has been there this season has bled plenty.
What's that you say, Michigan State? You were in the playoff one year ago and this year you're a total mess? You started the season ranked 12th but fell faster than a green bowling ball off the top of Spartan Stadium? You say you need a shot of confidence to get your mind right? Take two of these scarlet R-shaped pills and call me in the morning.
You know things aren't going you way when Idaho, a school going back to FCS, just rolled you 47-10 to achieve bowl eligibility. This week the Arma ... er, Bobcats travel to fellow 2-7'er New Mexico State in Pillow Fight of the Week IX. Or is it X? Or maybe it's XI? Whatever it is, it'll be X-rated.
North Carolina had to beat Duke and didn't. Virginia Tech had to beat Georgia Tech and didn't. Now they are both 7-3 overall and 5-2 in the ACC and will provide zero résumé help to Clemson in the relocated ACC championship game, help that the Tigers now need because they just lost to four-loss Pitt, also from the ACC Coastal. This division is like your transient uncle. Every time you think he's gotten his act together, you invite him back for Thanksgiving, but he always ends up sneezing into the turkey and picking his nose in the family portrait.
6. Rice (2-8)
Rice lost Pillow Fight of the Century I: The Owl Bowl to FA(not I)U, but then followed up with a win over frequent Bottom 10 resident Charlotte. Now they will face UTEP to see who will finish in the basement of Conference USA West. I was once in that basement. It's full of old Houston, Memphis and TCU media guides and one wall has a giant "AMERICAN CONFERENCE SUX" painted on it.
Speaking of the return of old friends...this weekend Georgia State Not Southern will host Georgia Southern Not State in the Georgia Dome, just south of the Georgia Aquarium and Georgia Tech, located 1.3 miles from the Georgia State Capitol, which is adjacent to the Georgia State campus, which sits between the headquarters of both the Georgia Department of Agriculture and Georgia-Pacific. Next year Georgia State will play at Turner Field, which is on Georgia Avenue. Within the 4-square-mile area I just described there are also six Waffle Houses, which is the most Georgia thing about this entire paragraph.
8. UMess (2-8)
The Minutemen lost in OT to the Fightin' Byes of Open Date U and will now close out the season with trips to BYU and Hawaii. Good thing the flights are long. They need to study. Have you ever heard a bunch of guys with New England accents try to pronounce Samoan and Hawaiian names? "Thaht BYU coach is wicked smaht. Whaht's tha kid's name? Kawh-lawh-nah Sawh-tawh-kah?"
Oh, OK, I see how it is. All season long I've been trying to get College GameDay to do their show from a Bottom 10 game. Now they're going to Western Michigan because the Broncos are undefeated, but we'll be monitoring the situation to make sure Buffalo receives equal time ... and to count how many times Coach Corso calls the Bulls the Bills.
10. Arizon-ugh (2-8)
Just as Kansas and Iowa State played for the bottom of the Big 12 and Rice and UTEP will play for the bottom of C-USA West and Rutgers and Michigan State played for ... oh, you get the premise here, right? Arizona will travel to Ore-gone State, a faceoff of the worst teams in each Pac-12 division. The loser will immediately be traded to the Big 12 for Oklahoma and a plate of burnt ends.