College Football is built on teams trying to get through the season unscathed for a chance at the College Football Playoff. Every week matters to try to achieve this. There are still a few undefeated teams this season. All fans know about Alabama and Clemson, but who are some of the undefeated teams that haven’t gotten much praise?
Wake Forest Demon Deacons (5-0)
Wake Forest is finally in the top 25 after starting the season off hot. The 22nd-ranked team is led by quarterback Jamie Newman who has thrown for 1,521 yards and has also provided a threat with his legs. Their defense is also playing solidly, allowing just 21 points per game.
The Demon Deacons have solid wins over Utah State, who has an NFL Draft prospect at quarterback in Jordan Love, and North Carolina. Playing in the ACC means that Wake won’t be tested as much as other teams on this list. They do however have a big game with Clemson on November 16. Wake Forest isn’t used to starting off the season 5-0, but they have clearly shown to be talented this season.
Baylor Bears (4-0)
Matt Rhule has done a fantastic job at Baylor and has already been rewarded with an extension. Baylor has scored 40.8 points per game and allows just 16.3 points per game. Charlie Brewer has led the offense with 972 passing yards and 10 touchdowns so far this season.
Baylor hasn’t had the toughest schedule so far. Their biggest win is over Iowa State, but that win gives them some opportunity later in the season. After beating the Cyclones, the Bears are probably the favorites to make the Big 12 Championship Game if Oklahoma or Texas slip up. To make things better, Baylor does get Texas and Oklahoma at home this season.
Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-0)
P.J. Fleck is another coach that is starting to show big signs of growth at his program. Minnesota doesn’t do anything at an elite level, but they do grind out wins. They score 34.8 points per game and allow 29.8. With Tanner Morgan leading the offense with 1,095 passing yards and Carter Coughlin generating pressure, the Golden Gophers could win several more games this season.
Minnesota has won games that they should be given more credit for than the average fan is willing to admit. They beat a tough-FCS opponent in South Dakota State. The Golden Gophers also won games over Fresno State and Purdue to give their 4-0 record some more legitimacy than other teams on this list. Minnesota will look to stay in the thick of the Big Ten West race in the coming weeks. They’ll have tough games with Penn State, Iowa and Wisconsin in November to look forward to.
Memphis Tigers (4-0)
Memphis is one of the contenders to be the group of five conferences’ representative in a New Year’s Six Bowl. Brady White is leading a high-powered Memphis offense, which scores 36.8 points per game. The defense has also been better than expected, as they give up 15.8 points per game.
The Tigers have a win over power five-opponent Ole Miss on record. They also have beaten Navy, although how good the Midshipmen are is still up in the air. Memphis is not currently ranked, but might be in a few more weeks. Temple, Tulane, SMU and Cincinnati appear to be the teams that could trip Memphis up down the road.
SMU Mustangs (5-0)
Sonny Dykes has been around college football for a while and has put together a great start to the season. The Mustangs are 5-0 with Texas-transfer Shane Buechele leading the way. Their offense is scoring 44.4 points per game, while the defense allows 26.6. The offense has been able to put up points against some solid competition so far this season.
The most notable win for the Mustangs came on the road against TCU, who was ranked 25th at the time. They also won games against solid teams in North Texas and Arkansas State. For a team that wasn’t expected to be half as good at this point of the season, the Mustangs have to feel confident. Their big games the rest of the way include a matchup with Memphis and a shootout with Tulane.
Boise State Broncos (4-0)
Boise State might be the team that gets the most recognition on this list because they are already ranked highly. The Broncos have been solid on both sides of the ball this season. Their offense puts up 31.6 points per game. The defense has stepped up big time and only allow 16.8 points per game.
Beating Florida State in their season-opener drew the nation’s attention to Boise State. Since then they have also won games against Marshall, Portland State and Air Force. They seem to be the class of the Mountain West and are the most likely team to get a New Year’s Six Bowl Bid out of a group of five conference. Hawaii, BYU and Utah State are teams that could give them trouble the rest of the way.
Appalachian State Mountaineers (4-0)
The Mountaineers have a first-year head coach in Eliah Drinkwitz, but they have played well despite that. Appalachian State has an experienced quarterback in Zac Thomas, who has had to help the offense score a lot more than in past years. They average 47 points per game and give up 29. Their defense could hold them back, but the offense has handled every obstacle so far.
Appalachian State got some national recognition when they beat North Carolina, who was undefeated at that point. They then went on to beat a Sun Belt-contender in Coastal Carolina, asserting their dominance in the conference. While they are a step above anyone else in the conference, they do have a game at South Carolina, which will give them another chance to show they can play with the power five teams.
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