Group of Five New Year’s Six Watch, Week 7: UCF exits, Cincinnati roars

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NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA – SEPTEMBER 19: Justin McMillan #12 of the Tulane Green Wave celebrates a touchdown during the second half of a game against the Houston Cougars at Yulman Stadium on September 19, 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

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Tulane Green Wave
4-1, 1-0 AAC Last Week: N/A

The Green Wave join the watch this week. It was difficult leaving off the Mountaineers from Boone, but this choice is more about what Tulane has in front of them that what they’ve done.

The Green Wave are playing as well as any team in the American, and if they are to win the American they have to defeat two, possibly three, teams ranked in the AP Top 25. Appalachian State doesn’t have that. The Mountaineers do own the Power Five win, but their conference strength of schedule simply doesn’t measure up with Tulane’s upcoming schedule.

They have a scrimmage against UConn this week, and we’ll see what they’re made of when they travel to Memphis in two weeks.

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Memphis Tigers
5-0, 1-0 AAC Last Week: 3

The Tigers slide down a spot? Yes they do. They had a good win against Louisiana-Monroe, but they gave up too many yards against the Warhawks. If it’s anything we’ve learned about these Tigers we know they can put up points in bunches in a hurry. They are fast all over the field, and have several players on offense that can score from anywhere on the field. Sure they slid a spot, but with their schedule, they might have the most staying power of any squad on the roster.

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SMU Mustangs
6-0, 2-0 AAC Last Week: 2

SMU slid this week as well. They survived against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane. They take three overtimes to defeat Tulsa. They were out-gained and converted only 20 percent of their third downs. It was to be expected in many ways. They beat TCU in the Iron Skillet Battle, romp against USF; the Mustangs were bound to have a let down at some point. The encouraging things was that they found a way to get the victory.

They have a tough test against Temple after their bye week. A run through a manageable October schedule could set up a meeting of undefeated teams if Memphis can navigate their October as well.

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