This Week in the Sun Belt
It's week four in the Sun Belt Conference and, so far, as the late Dennis Green would say, the teams "are who we thought they were."
With one exception.
New Mexico State is better than anyone thought they were, with exception of the Aggies themselves.
Here's a look at what's going on in the Belt this weekend.
IDAHO (1-2) (+3') AT SOUTH ALABAMA (1-2) 1:00, ESPN3--Two teams that were picked in the league's second tier. Idaho was competitive in a loss at Western Michigan. USA has two P5 losses and an FCS win. We'll find out more about the Jags this weekend.
WAKE FOREST (3-0) (-4') at APPALACHIAN STATE (2-1) (1-0) 2:30, ESPN3--My guess is the Mountaineers were looking ahead a little (a lot?) in their much tougher than expected win over Texas State. They'd better be focused this week. Wake is not a bad football team.
GEORGIA SOUTHERN (0-2) (+24) at INDIANA (1-1) 2:30, Big Ten Network--Georgia Southern had the week off to try and find its offense. They'll need it this week. Natives are REALLY restless in Statesboro.
ULM (0-2) (+6) at LOUISIANA (1-2) 4:00, ESPN3--This is only the second time the two teams have met in a conference opener. Does that change anything. Some think so. I do not.
AKRON (1-2) (+15') at TROY (2-1) (1-0) 5:00, ESPN3--It wasn't all that long ago Akron was pretty decent. But they've gone back to being Akron. Troy was challenged by NMSU last week. They can't look past this one.
GEORGIA STATE (0-2) (-1) at CHARLOTTE (0-3) 5:00, Local Charlotte TV --Georgia State is favored. I repeat. Georgia State is favored. Let that sink in for a bit.
WESTERN ILLINOIS (2-0) at COASTAL CAROLINA (1-1) 5:30, ESPN3--I was mildly surprised Coastal lost to UAB last week. This will be a tougher test than people think.
ARKANSAS STATE (1-1) (+5') at SMU (2-1) 6:00, ESPN3--These are two really potent offenses. The over/under is in the 70's. Fun to watch if you don't have a dog in the hunt...or even if you do.
UTSA (2-0) (-13') at TEXAS STATE (1-2) 6:30 ESPN3--Roadrunners are one of the best teams you know nothing about, Jon Snow. Frank Wilson has it goin on in San Antonio.
UTEP (0-3) (+18) at NEW MEXICO STATE (1-2) 7:00 ESPN3--EIghteen points? Is that because NMSU is pretty good? Or is it that UTEP is really bad? A little of both. But that's a huge line for two schools that are long time rivals. The Aggies have a chance to sweep their two rivals for the first time since.....?