Conference USA Team Season Grades: East
Conference USA Season Grade: C
The curveball of the Marshall late season meltdown took down the league’s best team, but UAB was happy to fill the void and take the conference title. Losing the highest-profile team late hurt, and the disastrous bowl season didn’t help the league.
In a mostly all-conference season, only four teams finished with a winning record – but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Southern Miss and Middle Tennessee were surprising bombs, but UTEP won three games, UTSA had a winning season, and there were enough teams at the same level to make it an interesting year, even if the quality of football wasn’t exactly scintillating.
2019 Final Grade: C-
Charlotte 2020 Season Grade: C+
It’s hard to get too down on the 49ers considering they weren’t supposed to have a big year. Four of their six games were against teams that went bowling and another was against Duke. It would’ve been nice, though, to get to .500.
FIU 2020 Season Grade: D-
It wasn’t expected to be a great year, and the Golden Panthers managed to go under the low bar. This was the only FBS team to lose to an FCS team. The 36-34 battle with a strong Liberty team kept the grade from being an F.
Florida Atlantic 2020 Season Grade: B-
It was a bit rebuilding year after Lane Kiffin left for Ole Miss, but Willie Taggart put together a great D, the team got a bowl game and finished with a winning season. For 2021, though, a little offense would be nice.
Marshall 2020 Season Grade: B
It was close to being amazing. The Thundering Herd rolled through their first seven games before the offense totally tanked in the final three. The 20-0 loss to Rice, the misfire against UAB in the Conference USA Championship, and the loss to Buffalo in the bowl game ended everything with a thud – and the firing of head coach Doc Holliday.
Middle Tennessee 2020 Season Grade: C-
It was a wildly inconsistent year that was way too much of a struggle. This is supposed to be a bowl team, and it wasn’t close to being that good. The Blue Raiders pulled out of an 0-4 start winning three of their last five games, but the three victories were by a total of 12 points.
Old Dominion 2020 Season Grade: Incomplete
Old Dominion didn’t play this season
WKU 2020 Season Grade: C
The problem was 2019. It ended on such a high note thanks to a great bowl win that the expectations were a bit higher. However, all five wins were against the weak and the sad, the offense didn’t get past 24 points until nine games in, and this time around, there wasn’t any magic in the bowl game, losing to Georgia State by 18.