After week one in college football, the main question is whether or not a Group of Five college football team can unseat UCF or Boise State at the top. Those two and three other schools are featured in week two of the Top 5 Group of Five rankings.
Some Group of Five programs laid an egg (FAU ) in the first official week of college football, while others rose to the occasion and put their mark on the season. From now until the College Football Playoff, we will rank the Top 5 G5 programs as they march to a New Year's Six bowl.
McKenzie Milton was a huge underdog in the Heisman Race before the season started. It's amazing what a 346-yard, five touchdown game can do to improve one's odds. Milton went from 35-1 to 11-1 as UCF extended its winning streak to 14 straight games.
New head coach Josh Heupel followed through on his promise to put the pedal to the metal on this offense. The Knights put up 652 yards with eight touchdowns on 11 drives. Not one of those scoring drives lasted longer than three minutes.
We won't really know how good this team really is until a meeting with North Carolina on September 15. After the Tar Heels opening loss to Cal, however, it is unclear what takeaway will come from another Knights win, should they prevail.
2) Boise State
UCF and Boise State are really 1a and 1b. The Broncos went into Alabama (Troy to be exact) and put a thumping on a very good Trojan team. Head coach for Troy, Neal Brown said this Bronco squad was the best team they have played since Clemson in 2016.
In the first half, quarterback Brett Rypien had more touchdown passes (four) than incompletions (three), finishing 20-for-28 for 305 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Broncos may have one of the best units in the Group of Five. Against Troy, the defense totaled five sacks and four turnovers. Cornerback Tyler Horton tied an NCAA record returned two fumbles for touchdowns.
The Mountaineers are the only team on here with a blemish on their record, but we are not above handing out moral victories. Appalachian State went into Happy Valley against a top ten team and was actually up with under a minute to play. Jalin Moore looks to have found his 2016 Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year form before injuries slowed him down last season. Quarterback Zac Thomas threw and ran the ball for over 300 yards, as the offensive unit as a whole put up 38 points, 28 in the fourth quarter with 451 yards of total offense…against Penn State…on the road.
For those programs that have two games under its belt, there may be no team with more unexpected results in the early going than the Warriors. Hawaii has over 1,000 yards of total offense. Sophomore quarterback Cole McDonald has 928 yards of total offense 11 touchdowns and zero turnovers.
Hawaii's decision to switch back to the run-and-shoot has been a boon for an offense that looked lost a lot of the time last season. For a team that was picked to finish second-to-last in the Mountain West, it has been a perfect beginning for Hawaii.
The 66-14 beating of Mercer may not look that impressive on paper, but it did establish the Tigers as the team most likely to compete with UCF for the American conference championship. Arizona State transfer Brady White completed 22-of-28 passes for 358 yards and 5 touchdowns to 5 different receivers in just one half in the lopsided win. The offense as a whole racked up 752 yards of total offense.