Mop Duty: Lessons Learned in Week 11 for the Sun Belt

NEW ORLEANS - JULY 26: Photos of th 2022 Sun Belt Conference Football Media Days at the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel on July 26, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The Sun Belt West Isn’t The Punching Bag Predicted

After ULM’s upset win over what I thought was a Panther’s team that had finally collected their mojo, I wondered just how well the Sun Belt West (thought to be soft and weak) performed against the Sun Belt East (believed to be strong and handsome). I did a quick count (didn’t bother to double check) and discovered that the Warhawk’s win evened the series between the two divisions at 6-6. (Honestly, please check my math.) Coastal Carolina’s victory of Southern Miss later in the evening reclaimed the edge for the East.

What can we take from this? Some might say “nothing.” Me, I think it says that while the very worst teams to belong in the West (hello there, Arkansas State and Texas State), but two divisions are otherwise evenly matched – and I’d put Troy and South Alabama over anyone in the East. Call me a Westy.

Texas State and Arkansas State are Set for an SBC Battle of the Basement

What does one award the winner of the Battle of the SBC Basement? An old fuse box? A moldy cardboard box marked “Don’t Throw Out?” A set of iron manacles? Regardless of the prize, the Bobcats and Red Wolves will not want to place such a trophy on the mantle, but somebody must. Both programs sit an inglorious 1-5 when they meet in San Marcos on Saturday. In August, I predicted this game would have post season consequences with both teams looking to acquire that magic sixth win. Amazingly, I was wrong!

It’s Infuriating That the AP Ranked Tulane Ahead of Coastal Carolina

In the preseason, national pundits tripped over themselves to declare the Sun Belt the best G5 conference in the nation. Now that it matters, the AP seems more charmed by whatever Tulane is cooking up over legitimate contenders like Coastal Carolina, Troy and South Alabama. The AP, in fact, has crammed three American programs into its Top 25, which seems like a lazy reflex developed by AP voters who are more concerned with making Texas a relevant program. Do your job, AP voters.

Troy Is Holding All The Cards

Troy not only has the head-to-head victory over South Alabama, but the Trojans remaining games (ULM and Arkansas State) is an easier row to hoe than the Jag’s (Southern Miss an Old Dominion). Troy continues to display gritty resilience, overcoming a 9-0 deficit to beat a crafty Army team on Saturday.