After three weeks of college football, it is time to rank the conference strengths in out-of-conference play. This is one of the components in my Official Championship Game Ratings (OCGR), which will debut in possibly three weeks (depending on amount of games played by qualifying teams).
The SEC debuts at the number one spot. With only two losses (UGA to Ok. St. and Tenn. to UCLA), the SEC is flying high. However, of the 21 games played, only seven have been versus BCS opponents.
The Pac-10 surprises many with the No. 2 slot. The ability to beat the MWC teams has greatly improved the Pac-10 rating. The Big Ten side of the MAC sits in the third spot. Of the 32 out-of-conference opponents, 12 have come from the MAC (10-2).
The Big East is only 3-5 against BCS conferences, but they know how to beat the non-BCS/FCS teams. The Big 12 have not shown their strength like they did last year. However, they have the first game against the SEC, with Texas A&M versus Arkansas down the road.
The Independents greatly improved, mainly with the move of Western Kentucky to the Sun Belt. The FCS has four wins over FBS teams, two of which came at the hands of ACC teams. The ACC shares the 3-5 record against BCS teams, though the two losses against FCS teams along with a Sun Belt loss has pushed this conference back (finished third last year).
The Mountain West teams are not nearly as impressive as they were last year. Conference USA is hoping to ride Houston's curtails like they tried with East Carolina early last season. The WAC is hanging on with Boise State as the Sun Belt and MAC bring up the rear through Week Three.
(Conference strength through games played on September 19, 2009)