Who's Better? The CAA or the ACC?

Sara HannonCorrespondent ISeptember 14, 2009

BLACKSBURG, VA - NOVEMBER 27:  Coach Al Groh of the Virginia Cavaliers questions a penalty call during a 24-10 loss to the Virginia Tech Hokies during a game on November 27, 2004, at Lane Stadium in Blacksburg, Virginia. (Photo By Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Okay, that's a stupid question, right?

Maybe, maybe not.

Truth be told, this year the best teams of the CAA will probably be better than the bottom-dwellers of the ACC.

UVA got embarrassed by William & Mary (turnovers...yikes!). Duke lost to Richmond. And Maryland narrowly escaped JMU in overtime.

Now there is no doubt about it: the University of Virginia (UVA) is bad. They need to fire their coach, the students know it, and they are just waiting for the alumni to catch on. At this point, I think most of the CAA, probably the toughest division in 1-AA...excuse me, in the "Football Championship Subdivision" (just in case we make anyone feel bad about being double-A instead of single-A.) could beat the Hoos.

Maryland is less terrible, but they still should have lost to JMU. JMU had that game and couldn't close it out. (personally, I blame the coach and the play-calling, but that's my opinion. Yours can certainly be different) Maryland is not a better team than Madison. JMU has some speed, some running and passing capability. and they just couldn't hang on to win. That's okay, I guess, but by losing they put themselves behind in the CAA standings already.

Duke almost lost to JMU last year, and they lost to Richmond this year. So, what exactly makes them better than the CAA teams?


The FCS is just like the FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision, formerly 1-A). There are good teams and there are bad teams, there are divisions that are tough all around, like the CAA, and divisions that are top heavy with the bottom teams really not playing well, like the ACC.

The ACC is a tough division. Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, and Miami are all top-25 teams. The ACC as a whole is 14-9 in the first two weeks, with only one team losing more than one game (UVA) and one team to only play one due to an early bye.

In the first two weeks of the season, the CAA is a collective 15-6, with three teams only playing one game due to early bye weeks, and only Northeastern has lost more than one game.

Clearly, if you put Virginia Tech or Georgia Tech up against Richmond, Villanova, JMU, or William & Mary...my money is on the ACC, but it's no guaranteed win. But the question becomes less-clear when you look at, say, Richmond verses Maryland, or Villanova against Wake Forest. Who do you pick in those games?

It all becomes much less clear.

So, should we abolish the line that separates the FCS from the FBS? The playoff system from the bowl system? Or should we blur it, abolish the FCS and just have those divisions join the big divisions?

Honestly, you probably couldn't do it. There's too much money tied up in college football, in the bowls and the sponsorship and the advertising, for any real change to happen.

And maybe it shouldn't. Maybe the FCS teams deserve their shot at some sort of national championship that they wouldn't get if they were part of 1-A. Either way, its an interesting question to think on.