Men DI College Rankings Spring 2016 #15 - Final One!
Men DI College Rankings Spring 2016 #15 - Final One!
This will be the final 15s rankings of the 2015-16 season. With the championship weekend done and dusted, this is it.
And I have to say, this was hard - very hard. It would have been far, far easier for us if BYU had won the Varsity Cup, because BYU had beaten every team the Cougars had faced. Now, every top team has a sort of fatal flaw.
Cal - beat everyone, except UBC. Now, no one else plays the University of British Columbia, and this was a UBC team of the ages, going 20-0 and winning the BC Premier League (that's against men's clubs chock full of international players, by the way). So Cal losing 20-15 to UBC was not unexpected and not a flaw. But losing 50-3 in Vancouver is different. I'm not sure I've ever seen Cal be thumped that severely by another college team. That nagged at me.
BYU - Easy one, the loss to Cal on Saturday. I've seen and heard a few comments saying, basically, if they play again tomorrow, my money's on BYU. OK, well, they won't play again tomorrow, this is it. Cougars may actually be the best time in the nation, but they lost.
Life - didn't play outside their region (or, worded another way, no one from outside their region played them). It would have been nice to see Utah play Life in the DIA semis, rather than the Running Eagles play Lindenwood for the 3rd time. Had they played the Utes, then we would have had the top five teams all with one common opponent. Life only played two opponents that Cal and BYU faced - Air Force and Saint Mary's. Against Air Force, Life has the best result (74-0), and against Saint Mary's one of the closes (BYU played Saint Mary's twice, once winning big and once winning by a point). So Life's ranking was, to a certain extent, on faith. Saturday, with the way they played, that faith was supported, big-time.
But still, it would have been good to see
Saint Mary's - they played everyone, but didn't get the wins, losing to BYU twice, Cal, Life, and beating Utah but by a less-than-impressive result of 57-50. Central Washington, BYU, and Cal also played Utah, and won by larger margins.
Central Washington - to a lesser extent, CWU didn't play anyone, either. It would have been great if Air Force had fulfilled the planned fixture between the two. And it would have been great if CWU played Saint Mary's - that used to happen in the old DIA conference alignment. CWU did play Utah, and won big, and did play Cal, and almost beat the Bears 14-13.
That result seems, to me, to be key. If one kick goes over, CWU is in the Varsity Cup final, and we're debating whether Central is #1 or #2 or #3. I think they're right in the conversation.
So this is what I came up with.
Cal played and beat the #1 team. Cal didn't lose to any US-based college team, and lost instead to the best team in the British Columbia Premiership. Cal also be Saint Mary's, Utah, UCLA, Arizona, Arizona State, Air Force, Army, and Central Washington. BYU beat everyone they played, including CWU (by more than Cal), and Saint Mary's (by more than Cal), and Utah (by more than Cal), and Air Force (by more than Cal). So, again, you could argue that BYU is #1 despite the loss in the VC final, but Miami was the #1 football team in 1983-84, not Nebraska, and Cal has to be ranked ahead.
Life is either #2 or #3. Simple. Except we're not sure which of those it should be.
Central Washington and Saint Mary's both played Cal, BYU, and Utah. CWU went 1-2 in those games and averaged a score of 29-26. Saint Mary's went 1-3 (played BYU twice), and averaged 29-42. Even if you take out the less-favorable BYU result you've got 1-2 and 33-36.
Thus, Cal will be #1, Central Washington #4, and Saint Mary's #5. Life and BYU will be #2 and #3. Not sure which. The direct comparisons I can do for BYU and Life is this: both played Air Force at home. Life won by 74, and BYU by 72. And both played Saint Mary's in the rain at Saint Mary's, and BYU won by 1, and Life by 4. You could easily argue another way, but we've got Life at #2.
And finally, one more thing - we all know how ridiculous (and by that I mean open to ridicule) it is that these teams don't play each other in a playoff format. Given that one of the problems with DIA for some was that the final was too late in the season, and now the final is being held the same time as the Varsity Cup final, and given that the live coverage of DIA was better than that of Varsity Cup except for the final, and given that we've got two teams that have not played each other claiming to be "national champions," maybe we should find a solution.
Here are the rankings. I have spoken.
|Goff Rugby Report All-DI Men College Rankings Spring 2016 #15|
|1||3||California (Calif.)||Defeated BYU (1)|
|2||2||Life (Ga.)||Defeated Saint Mary's (5)|
|3||1||BYU (Utah)||Lost to Cal (3)|
|4||4||Central Washington (Wash.)||Idle|
|5||5||Saint Mary's (Calif.)||Lost to Life (2)|
|7||7||Arkansas State (Ark.)||Idle|
|12||12||Penn State (Pa.)||Idle|
|16||19||UC-Davis (Calif.)||Defeated Notre Dame College (17)|
|17||17||Notre Dame College (Ohio)||Lost to UC Davis (19)|
|24||24||Texas A&M (Texas)||Idle|
|25||25||Air Force (Colo.)||Idle|
|27||27||San Diego State (Calif.)||Idle|
|28||28||Cal Poly (Calif.)||Idle|
|30||30||South Carolina (SC)||Idle|
|32||34||St. Bonaventure (NY)||Idle|
|34||33||Ohio State (Ohio)||Idle|
|35||35||Utah State (Utah)||Idle|
|36||36||Sacramento State (Calif.)||Idle|
|37||37||James Madison (Va.)||Idle|
|41||41||Cal State Long Beach (Calif.)||Idle|
|42||42||Boston College (Mass.)||Idle|
|44||44||Bowling Green (Ohio)||Idle|
|46||47||Santa Clara (Calif.)||Idle|
|48||48||Wheeling Jesuit (WV)||Idle|
|50||50||Western Washington (Wash.)||Idle|