Mountain West Football: Where Do FCS Opponents Rank In Preseason 2022 SP+ Projections?
Where do each of the Mountain West’s FCS opponents land in Bill Connelly’s SP+ projections?
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The slate may be a little tougher than expected.
Week 0 is mere days away, so following the unveiling of his final SP+ projections of the off-season earlier this week, ESPN’s Bill Connelly revealed today what the FCS landscape looks like this morning by that same metric, which examines college football’s most efficient teams in a manner that adjusts for opponents and tempo.
- 8. Northern Iowa — #74 offense, #1 defense
- 14. Sacramento State — #55 offense, #7 defense
- 15. Weber State — #32 offense, #18 defense
- 19. Incarnate Word — #3 offense, #94 defense
- 28. UT Martin — #34 offense, #30 defense
- 41. Maine — #30 offense, #65 defense
- 44. Portland State — #39 offense, #61 defense
- 64. Duquesne — #44 offense, #89 defense
- 80. Idaho State — #117 offense, #36 defense
- 86. Northern Colorado — #90 offense, #76 defense
- 91. Cal Poly — #57 offense, #102 defense
As a whole, the Big Sky projects to be a fistfight week in and week out with six teams, including Sacramento State and Weber State, in the SP+ top 25. What might be more surprising is that even those teams who were predicted to finish at the bottom of that conference — Portland State, Idaho State, Northern Colorado, and Cal Poly — still project as being more efficient than at least 29 of their FCS peers.
The number one FCS opponent on the docket this year, however, comes from the Missouri Valley Conference. Northern Iowa, who will open 2022 on the road against Air Force, come in at eighth overall on the strength of a defense that, according to Connelly, projects as the FCS’s best. In all, even the Mountain West’s top contenders won’t want to take any of these teams lightly.