Central Michigan scored a win for the MAC by knocking off Iowa in the final seconds. (Matthew Holst/Getty Images)
Our weekly highlight show of lesser FBS luminaries. Non-AQs and independents, be welcome:
This will mark our fifth season tracking the record of non-AQ programs against teams from power conferences, for no other reason than liking to watch where the numbers go. We’re not sure we’ve ever seen a weekend produce a winning record for a mid-major league that involved more than one or two games. But glory be to the MAC, which played seven games against BCS-favored opponents, and won four. (Yes, we’re even including Northern Illinois’ win over Kansas, even though Kansas is Kansas. COUNT IT.)
MAC teams beat one Big Ten team, two Big East teams and one Big 12 team. Directional Michigan schools had a particularly grand weekend, with Central Michigan knocking off Iowa and Western Michigan laying out UConn. Eastern Michigan also acquitted itself admirably, putting up a dogged fight against Michigan State.
The fifth big winner of Week 4 was the gaudiest: Louisiana Tech, a team with qualities we have been relentlessly touting since last December or so, mowed down Illinois on the road, 52-24. The Bulldogs currently field the nation’s third-ranked scoring offense and have two more high-profile nonconference matchups in the next three weeks: at Virginia and home against Texas A&M. Stay tuned; they’re our favorites behind Ohio to finish the 2012 regular season undefeated.
Speaking of the Bobcats: They’re through their nonconference gauntlet after a Week 4 win over Norfolk State and received 40 votes in this week’s AP Poll. The only other non-AQ teams on that list are Boise State at No. 24 and Louisiana Tech, which received seven votes.