For the second week in a row, Temple is eighth in the American Athletic Conference football power rankings, voted upon by a league-wide panel of beat reporters.
Two AAC games were cancelled as a result of Hurricane Irma last week, and it appears unlikely that either will be rescheduled this season. Meanwhile, Houston, which was unable to play its opener because of Hurricane Harvey, kicked off 2017 with a win over a Power Five opponent.
Here is the latest ranking:
1. USF (2-0): The threat of Hurricane Irma prompted USF to call off its trip to Connecticut for a Saturday game against the Huskies that had been pushed to a morning kickoff. But Friday’s home game against Illinois will go on as scheduled, with coach Charlie Strong announcing Tuesday that first responders and their families (up to four per party) will receive free admission. — Joey Knight, Tampa Bay Times
2. Houston (1-0): By no means was it pretty, but the Cougars held on to beat Arizona, 19-16, for Major Applewhite’s first win as head coach last weekend. While the defense came up with a late interception to seal the game and allowed only a pair of second-half field goals, the offense was vanilla and put together only one impressive drive as quarterback Kyle Allen threw two interceptions and had a fumble in his debut. The Cougars play crosstown rival Rice this week in the annual Bayou Bucket — the first game for both teams in the city since Tropical Storm Harvey. — Joseph Duarte, Houston Chronicle
T-3. Memphis (1-0): The Tigers boarded a charter flight to Orlando last Thursday only to land and discover that their game against UCF the following night had been cancelled. But by the time they were back in the air, returning to Memphis, coach Mike Norvell was already watching film on the team’s next opponent: No. 25 UCLA. Memphis will host the Bruins on Saturday morning in the most anticipated game of its 2017 season, a matchup that will also be televised nationally on ABC. — Tom Schad, The Commercial Appeal
T-3. Navy (2-0, 1-1 AAC): The Midshipmen escaped Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium with a 23-21 victory over Tulane last weekend. It was a real defensive slugfest with a safety proving decisive. Navy’s defense is much-improved over last season, allowing just 20 points and 296 total yards through two games. The Midshipmen are not playing this week and return to action Sept. 23 against Cincinnati. — Bill Wagner, Baltimore Sun Media Group
5. UCF (1-0): The Knights postponed their conference opener against Memphis in anticipation of the arrival of Hurricane Irma, a Category 5 storm that was expected to impact the state of Florida with winds up to 130 miles per hour and forced the evacuation of more than six million residents. The storm has been responsible for at least 25 deaths throughout the Caribbean. UCF was scheduled to return to its nonconference schedule by hosting Georgia Tech on Saturday, but that game was also called off as the state continues to recover from the storm. — Matt Murschel, Orlando Sentinel
6. SMU (2-0): The Mustangs handled one of their crosstown rivals on Saturday, beating North Texas, 54-32, behind the performance of wide receiver Courtland Sutton. The junior gained 163 yards and broke the conference record for single-game receiving touchdowns with four against the Mean Green. Next, SMU will face its other crosstown rival, TCU, in the Battle for the Iron Skillet. The Mustangs have not beat the Horned Frogs since 2011. — Adam Grosbard, Dallas Morning News
7. Tulsa (1-1): The Hurricane got back on track with a 66-42 home win against Louisiana on Saturday, relying upon a 424-yard rushing performance that included a career-high 262 yards from D’Angelo Brewer. Quarterback Chad President also established himself as Tulsa’s starter, accounting for three touchdowns. In a shootout that featured the most points and yards (667) produced by Philip Montgomery’s offense, the defense continued to struggle, allowing 596 yards. Tulsa ranks last nationally in total defense, surrendering 618 yards per game, and next visits a dangerous Toledo team that had one of the best offenses in college football in 2016. — Kelly Hines, Tulsa World
8. Temple (1-1): The Owls squandered a 13-0 lead and needed a career-best 49-yard field goal from Aaron Boumheri to beat Football Championship Subdivision school Vilanova, 16-13. Temple’s Logan Marchi hasn’t thrown an interception, but the running game is averaging just 2.6 yards per carry. The Owls now host winless Massachusetts on Friday before their toughest two-game stretch — at USF and at home against Houston — to end a difficult month of September. — Marc Narducci, Philadelphia Inquirer
9. Cincinnati (1-1): Bearcats running back Mike Boone said UC hoped to “shock the world” at No. 8 Michigan. The Bearcats were within 17-14 late in the third quarter, but a late collapse resulted in a 36-14 loss. Boone rushed 12 times for 44 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Hayden Moore was just 15-for-40 passing for 132 yards, with one touchdown and two pick-six interceptions. Up next is neighboring rival Miami (Ohio), which the Bearcats have beaten 11 straight times. — Tom Groeschen, Cincinnati Enquirer
10. Tulane (1-1, 0-1 AAC): For only the second time in his coaching career, coach Willie Fritz lost a game when his team was plus-two or better in turnover margin. Both have come against Navy. Despite losing quarterback Jonathan Banks to an injury in the second quarter, the Green Wave almost ended the Midshipmen’s 14-game regular-season home winning streak, holding them to 326 yards but picking up only 262 yards of its own in a 23-21 loss. Next up is a trip to No. 2 Oklahoma. Tulane, 0-12 all-time against second-ranked teams, is a 34-point underdog against Baker Mayfield and company. — Guerry Smith, The New Orleans Advocate
11. Connecticut (1-0): With their home game against USF cancelled, the Huskies practiced for two hours on campus Saturday. Aside from having no game film to review and recent corrections to make, UConn fell back into its typical game-week pattern with a light workout Sunday. The Huskies opened August 31 with a victory over Holy Cross and won’t have another home game until Oct. 6 (vs. Memphis). UConn plays Saturday at Virginia, followed by a bye and a game Sept. 30 at SMU. — Mike Anthony, The Hartford Courant
12. East Carolina (0-2): The Pirates reached a new low when they trailed West Virginia 49-3 at halftime in Saturday’s eventual 56-20 loss in Morgantown. Coupled with ECU’s opening-night loss to James Madison, the Pirates are desperate for change and coach Scottie Montgomery made one on Sunday, removing defensive coordinator Kenwick Thompson and replacing him with defensive line coach Robert Prunty. Things won’t get easier for ECU, which has already been outscored 90-34 in two games, as the Pirates take on No. 16 Virginia Tech next. — Nathan Summers, The Daily Reflector