College Football Biggest Surprises and Disappointments

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Joe Broback

Contributor at Champion Insiders
Joe is a writer covering the NFL, NBA, NHL and college football. He also currently writes for SB Nation’s Underdog Dynasty, covering the American Athletic Conference since 2016. Joe enjoys collecting shoes, playing sports, and anything fitness related.
Joe Broback
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We’re almost eight weeks into the college football season, and we’ve been treated to some special performances already. However, we’ve also seen a handful of letdowns. Besides a handful of teams, no one really knows how a season will go. After winning the MAC East in 2018, Buffalo’s second to last at 2-4. Kent State (3-3) sits at the top currently of that division. That’s a perfect example in one division of a surprise and a disappointment. Before Week 8 begins, let’s take a look at who’s overachieved so far and who underachieving.

College Football Surprises

Louisville Cardinals (4-2)

Scott Satterfield took a 2-10 team and already doubled their win total through the first half of their season. A change in culture was needed, and Satterfield’s proving to be the right man for the job.

Baylor Bears (6-0)

Controversy and violations highlighted Baylor’s program when Matt Rhule took over. He knew what he was getting into, and never backed away from the challenge. Now, his team’s one of two Big 12 teams that are bowl eligible.

Minnesota Golden Gophers (6-0)

Just a few weeks ago, the 3-0 Gophers could be listed in both categories. They were undefeated, but struggled against inferior competition. Now, they’ve turned those struggles into impressive performances. There’s a serious chance they can go 8-0, and all bets are off after that.

SMU Mustangs (6-0)

Their first 6-0 start since 1982 has fans buzzing. Shane Buchele, Xavier Jones, and James Proche lead an explosive offense that’s put SMU on the map. They sit on top of the AAC, and have their sights set on a NY6 bowl game.

LSU Tigers (6-0)

Joe Burrow’s statistical explosion puts the Tigers in playoff contention right now. Fans feel good about their chances of beating Alabama for the first time since 2011.


Michigan Wolverines (5-1)

The Wolverines only have one loss, but they looked awful in that game. Their one win over a ranked opponent this year was a 10-3 win over Iowa. So yeah, things are okay in Ann Arbor, but they’re far from great.

Miami Hurricanes (3-3)

Miami started the season strong even in a loss to Florida, but followed that up with a loss to North Carolina. Manny Diaz might have been better staying at Temple, given the Owls 5-1 start.

Maryland Terrapins (3-3)

Maryland scored 142 points in their first two games, but only 79 since (31 if you exclude the win over Rutgers). Early hype turned quickly into frustration, and no one knows what to expect from this team going forward.

Northwestern Wildcats (1-4)

Not only have the Wildcats played poorly, but head coach Pat Fitzgerald hasn’t looked great in press conferences. Life doesn’t get much easier as they face Ohio State and Iowa next.

North Texas Mean Green (2-4)

Mason Fine’s status remains unclear going forward, but the Mean Green underachieved up to this point. After a thrilling nine win season, North Texas is looking for answers in 2019.

UCLA Bruins (1-5)

Chip Kelly’s magic isn’t working with the Bruins. After a rough start in the first half of their season, the second half isn’t looking too promising either.

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