Group of Five Neglected in EA Sports College Football 25 Team Power Rankings

    While the SEC and Big Ten had seven teams each in EA Sports College Football 25's team power rankings, the Group of Five had zero.

    This week, EA Sports has upped the ante toward the release of College Football 25. The developers shared the game’s top 25 toughest places to play, offenses, defenses, and overall team ratings. And while conferences like the SEC and Big Ten received their fair share of love, the entire Group of Five was left out to dry.

    EA Sports College Football 25 Continues To Shaft the Group of Five

    The Group of Five’s representation was noticeably lacking during College Football 25’s rankings week. Boise State’s home venue (Albertsons Stadium) ranked 24th on the toughest places to play list, and Memphis received the 19th-best offense at 85 overall. But that was it. No top-25 defenses, and no top-25 overall teams.

    Of course, it’s not all that surprising, given the Group of Five has routinely received the short end of the stick compared to the Power Five. There’s a reason so many Go5 programs have left — and are currently trying to — for Power Five conferences, especially during the realignment era.

    But that doesn’t mean the Group of Five doesn’t deserve recognition. In terms of toughest places to play, Colorado State (Canvas Stadium), Appalachian State (Kidd Brewer Stadium), and East Carolina (Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium) are just a few names that come to mind, as their stadiums and atmospheres rival those of Power Five-conference programs.

    In addition to Memphis, Liberty should’ve made the top 25 offenses list. The Flames are fresh off a New Year’s Six appearance after producing the top rushing unit (293.3 yards per game) and the fourth-best offense in the nation (499 yards per game).

    Head coach Jamey Chadwell, QB Kaidon Salter, and RB Quinton Cooley all return. And with EA’s emphasis on option running in the game, Liberty’s exclusion from the rankings is inconceivable.

    Defensively, Troy, Tulane, and Miami (OH) deserve recognition. Notre Dame offensive coordinator Gerad Parker is the Trojans’ new head coach, but with several second and third-level transfers, the defense should continue to play up to its potential.

    Tulane stole former Troy HC Jon Sumrall to take the reigns from Willie Fritz, and Sumrall brought most of his coaching staff with him. That continuity will help him establish culture quickly, and a defense that already performed well last season could be even better in 2024.

    Last but not least, the MAC favorite Miami RedHawks. Most of the roster returns, including EDGE Brian Ugwu and LBs Ty Wise and Matt Salopek, after the team allowed the seventh-fewest points per game in the country (16.2).

    With the College Football Playoff expanding to 12 teams, it became much easier for the Group of Five to make the dance. In our 2024 FBS Power Rankings, three Go5 programs made the top 25: Memphis (25), Liberty (21), and Boise State (20).

    Of course, power rankings are different than team ratings in a video game. But even based on pure talent, those three should be able to compete with the nine schools rated 87 overall (16-25 on the team rankings), including Colorado, who went 4-8 last year.

    KEEP READING: SEC Dominates the EA Sports College Football 25 Team Power Rankings

    The Group of Five is used to being slighted, even virtually, as in the last iteration of EA’s beloved franchise, NCAA 14, only one program from its five conferences made the top 45 in overall team rating (Boise State, 86).

    College Football Network has you covered with the latest news and analysis, rankings, transfer portal information, top 10 returning players, the 2024 college football season schedule, and much more!

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