Commentary

Bottom 10 teams looking to trade places

Originally Published: September 15, 2010
By Mark Schlabach | ESPN.com

WEEK: Preseason | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13

The Bottom 10 inspirational thought of the week:


"All battles are fought by scared men who'd rather be some place else."
-- "In Harm's Way," John Wayne

Two weeks into the 2010 college football season, it's clear that the Bottom 10 teams would rather be some place else on Saturdays.

And there's no question Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer would have rather been anywhere else than standing on the sideline of Lane Stadium in Blacksburg, Va., last weekend.

The Hokies, who two weeks ago were ranked in the top 10 and had visions of playing for a BCS national championship at season's end, lost their second game in six days, falling to FCS foe James Madison University 21-16.

A 2009 Harris Poll reported that John Wayne was ranked third among America's favorite film stars. Wayne, who died in 1979, was the only deceased film star on the list.

The Bottom 10 teams might play like they don't have a pulse, but no one is clamoring to watch them play on Saturdays -- except their opponents.

And like the actor affectionately known as the "Duke," the Dukes might be considered true American heroes after upsetting Virginia Tech. For those college football fans who believe Boise State has no place playing in the BCS national championship game, the Dukes' upset of Virginia Tech was a welcome sight.

Boise State is ranked No. 3 in the country after coming from behind to beat the Hokies 33-30 in its opener on Labor Day night. But after Virginia Tech lost to JMU, the Broncos' opening victory carries far less weight.

One Bottom 10 team might muster enough true grit to win its first game this weekend. Winless Colorado State plays Miami (Ohio) in the Pillow Fight of the Week on Saturday at Yager Stadium in Oxford, Ohio. The Red Hawks will try to keep their modest one-game winning streak intact, after beating Eastern Michigan 28-21 last week.

With apologies to John Wayne and Steve Harvey, here's this week's Bottom 10:

ESPN.com's Bottom 10
  RANK TEAM '10 RECORD COMMENT
1. Western Kentucky 0-2 "Legend of the Lost:" The Hilltoppers' losing streak is reaching legendary status after they lost their 22nd consecutive game, 62-28 at Kentucky last week.
2. Eastern Michigan 0-2 "The Trail Beyond:" The Eagles have lost 14 games in a row after falling to Miami (Ohio), and the trail beyond doesn't look much better. EMU hosts Central Michigan on Saturday and plays at No. 2 Ohio State next week.
3. New Mexico 0-2 "Rio Lobo:" After the Lobos were outscored 124-17 in losses to Oregon and Texas Tech, it might not be too long before coach Mike Locksley is vacationing in Rio.
4. New Mexico State 0-1 "The Lucky Texan:" Embattled UTEP coach Mike Price is this week's lucky Texan -- his Miners host the woebegone Aggies at the Sun Bowl on Saturday night.
5. Virginia Tech 0-2 "The Longest Day:" Last week's loss to the Dukes was surely one of the longest days in Virginia Tech's football history, as the Hokies lost to an FCS foe at home for the first time since 1985.
6. Akron 0-2 "The Spoilers:" Virginia Tech wasn't the only FBS team to lose to an FCS opponent last week. The Zips inexplicably lost to Gardner-Webb 38-37 in overtime at home.
7. Memphis 0-2 "West of the Divide:" The Tigers were awful in their first two games under new coach Larry Porter, but they'll try to show the west is better than the middle of their state when they host Middle Tennessee State on Saturday.
8. North Texas 0-2 "The Long Voyage Home:" If the not-so-Mean Green lose at Army on Saturday, it will be a very long voyage back to Denton, Texas.
9. San Jose State 0-2 "How The West Was Won:" How will the winless Spartans get their first victory? New San Jose State coach Mike MacIntyre can only hope his team is good enough to beat FCS foe Southern Utah on Saturday night.
10. Colorado State 0-2 "In Harm's Way:" The Rams were outscored 75-9 in losses to Colorado and Nevada. A loss at Miami (Ohio) in the Pillow Fight of the Week might be even more damaging to their psyche.

Waiting list: Arkansas State (0-2), Minnesota (1-1), Big East DUIs, Colorado (1-1), UNLV (0-2), Vanderbilt (0-2), jersey selling, Bowling Green (0-2), Tennessee's desire, Washington State (1-1), UCLA (0-2).

Mark Schlabach covers college football for ESPN.com.

Mark Schlabach | email

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