I'm tired of everyone talking about the great programs of college football. They get too much media as is, in fact it's quite ridiculous if you think about it. Especially when you realize there are 119 programs that make up Division 1-A football. So instead of talking about the best, I'm going to talk about the worst. Those programs that have scraped the bottom of the barrel since we rolled into the 21st Century and show no signs of changing their situations. Those programs that are so awful, you realize just how good you have it as a fan of a semi-successful one. They're the programs that make SMU look like Florida and have a fan base about as large as the football team itself. Programs so horrible, if they were a dog, you'd have shot it years ago.
I call these programs TGINF, or Thank God I'm NOT a Fan. Because if I were, well let's not go there right now. So here's the list of the most putrid, godawful programs that make up NCAA Division 1-A football. Hold your nose and begin reading...
The levels of their sucktatude has created a gravitational pull around Durham, North Carolina. Coming off a winless season in 2006, the Blue Devils are at the lowest of the low. They're so bad, I think Wallace Wade Stadium is currently being used as a homeless camp, undoubtedly housing all those coaches that have come and gone since Steve Spurrier graced the sidelines nearly 20 years ago.
Since 2000, Duke has the worst record of all 119 football teams in Division 1-A. They've gone 9-71 in six years and to put that into perspective, through two mediocre seasons the past two years, Utah has won 6 more games than the Blue Devils have in the past six years. The team that has the best winning percentage since 2000, Boise State, won 4 more games just last year than Duke has won since 2000. And it gets worse for the Blue Devils and their fans, as they haven't had a winning season in 13 years and they haven't won a bowl game in 46 years. Oh but they have that 1989 ACC Co-Championship to hang their hat on, at least it hasn't always been bad.
Best description of Duke football yet.
Up until a couple of years ago, I didn't even know Buffalo had a football team that wasn't named the Bills. These Buffalo footballers are close, as they call themselves the Bulls, but no one would ever mistake them for an NFL team, or even one that plays college football for that matter.
In the past six seasons the Bulls have won 12 games and only 7 games since 2002. They had a 2-win season last year and have been crippled by the Division 1-AA to Division 1-A transfer they endured back in 1999. Since they're relatively new to this highest division of college football, I'll cut them some slack. But it appears the future is fairly bleak for the Bulls, since they have a dearth of talent and still play in Buffalo. I mean really, who'd want to play in the Antarctica of the northeast? Not me.
Buffalo's newest recruit thinks to himself "What the %^@$! did I get myself into?"
It's hard to believe that at one time Army was one of the most feared and revered programs in college football. Today they're marred in losing and not even the national champion winning Bobby Ross could get them over the hump. The last coach to see any success was Bob Sutton, who went 10-2 in 1996. A good season in an otherwise mediocre career with the Black Knights. To make matters worse for Army, their hated rival Navy is on the cusp of being elite. It's so bad in West Point right now that students are lining up to serve in Iraq just for they don't have to suffer through another Army football season.
The record of failure stretches through decades, as Army hasn't played in a bowl game since 1996, and haven't won one since 1985. The last time they had back-to-back winning seasons was in 1989 and 1990 and even though they have a new coach, some guy named Stan Brock, the outlook is still considerably grim. Then again, maybe Brock will be to Army as Paul Johnson was to Navy.
I want YOU to stop sucking!
Poor Temple, such a horrendous program. Unlike Duke and even Army, Temple has never really been good. They've had a couple decent seasons throughout the team's 113 year history. But that's about it and currently, they've been down right terrible. So terrible in fact that they were kicked out of the Big East, have only played in two bowl games in the school's history (last one was in 1979) and allowed Bobby Wallace to coach the Owls for 8 seasons. You might ask yourself why that makes them terrible, well realize that in 8 years he only won 19 games. You know your program sucks when they let a crappy coach continue to coach because they know they can't do any better. Obviously Wallace had balls of steel to take the nut kicking he endured over the 8 years he spent in Philadelphia. But even he couldn't take it forever and after a winless season in 2005, he was gone, as Temple replaced him with Al Golden.
Golden stepped into a pile of shit and realized it was Temple football. Before he could skip town, he was stuck in it and guided the Owls to a 1-11 season. That lone win has recaptured the excitement of all 3 Temple fans and there are hopes they can double it this season!
Temple Ruins, just not as cool.
Like Boise State, Idaho was a pretty good Division 1-AA football program. That success however did not translate into Division 1-A success, because they've sucked ever since joining this level of play. Idaho is so bad that their former head coach -- the guy before Erickson Part II -- demoted himself and became an assistant coach on USC's football team. Now I don't profess to know the laws of the coaching ladder, but I always just assumed assistants left their position to become a head coach and not the other way around. Oh sure it's Idaho and USC is probably the darling of college football, but still, to leave for a lesser position just speaks at how poor Idaho football really is. But I do feel bad for Vandal fans, because not only do they live in Idaho -- a place that makes Utah look desirable -- they were finally getting their hopes up that the football team was going to turn the corner. That came with the news that Dennis Erickson had accepted an offer to return to Idaho, a place he had coached back in the 80s, and promised to stay until he decided he wanted to retire. Of course this was Dennis Erickson, probably the least trust worthy coach in football, but they bought it line for line.
Erickson lasted a year before he decided he couldn't take it anymore. And even though there were signs of success at Idaho, like when they started 4-3, they have their third new coach in three years. You can't succeed with that turnover rate and all the positive mojo Erickson brought to Idaho last season is pretty much gone.
Just how bad has Idaho been since 2000? Well their best season came in 2000, when they went 5-6 and since then they've won only 15 games. Erickson was probably wise to bolt for Arizona State, because the Idaho program is the land of the dead.
Your 2007 Idaho Vandals!