Hoops & Helmets 2022: College Football & Basketball Combined Rankings 1-130

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Hoops & Helmets 2022: College Football & Basketball Combined Rankings 1-130

College Football Features

Hoops & Helmets 2022: College Football & Basketball Combined Rankings 1-130

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Hoops & Helmets 2022: It’s our ranking of all 130 schools that play major college football and basketball. Who had the best and worst years?


@RichCirminiello & @PeteFiutak

Which schools that play both college football at the FBS level and major college basketball had the best and worst seasons? Which fan bases had the most fun, and which ones had it rough?

It’s our annual Hoops & Helmets ranking of all 130 schools that play both of the major sports at the highest level.

A few ground rules before we get started. We put the schools into four categories, with a few major exceptions.

No bowl, no NCAA Tournament, no fun. These schools had the double whammy of not being bowl eligible and not getting into the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

No bowl, NCAA Tournament. These schools might have made it into the NCAA Tournament, but they weren’t good enough on the football field to get bowl eligible.

Bowl, no NCAA Tournament. These schools were bowl eligible, but they didn’t get to play the part of the basketball season that actually matters. And finally …

Bowl, NCAA Tournament. These schools got bowl eligible – but not all of them got to play thanks to COVID issues – and danced in the hoops madness.

About those major exceptions, if you did something worthy of a t-shirt you get extra credit. That means if you won a championship of some sort – or got into the College Football Playoff or Final Four – other things are overlooked, to a point.

We mostly go by the long haul of the regular season, but the biggest games meant the most. If you’re a top basketball team and you rocked your regular season and fizzled on Thursday of the NCAAs, that matters.

A * means the school won the conference championship in football or tournament in basketball.

130
USF

Football: 2-10 overall, 1-7 in conference, T9th in AAC
Basketball: 8-23 overall, 3-15 in conference, 11th in AAC
2021: 122 2020: 117 2019: 47 2018: 78
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The Bulls finished tied for last in the American Athletic Conference in football and were dead last in hoops.

129
Southern Miss

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-6 in conference, T6th in Conference USA West
Basketball: 7-26 overall, 1-17 in conference, 6th in Conference USA West
2021: 118 2020: 77 2019: 51 2018: 81
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The football team managed to win three games, but it was tied for last in the Conference USA standings. The hoops team came up with one whole win in conference play.

128
UMass

Football: 1-11 overall
Basketball: 15-17 overall, 7-11 in conference, 10th in Atlantic 10
2021: 105 2020: 130 2019: 126 2018: 122
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The basketball team wasn’t totally awful – outside of finishing tenth in the Atlantic 10 – but there wasn’t anything fun happening in football.

127
FIU

Football: 1-11 overall, 0-8 in conference, 7th in Conference USA East
Basketball: 15-17 overall, 5-13 in conference, 6th in Conference USA East
2021: 129 2020: 71 2019: 40 2018: 85
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The Golden Panthers weren’t that bad in basketball, but a one-win football season and no victories over FBS teams dragged the year down.

126
ULM

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-5 in conference, T3rd in Sun Belt West
Basketball: 13-18 overall, 5-13 in conference, 11th in Sun Belt
2021: 127 2020: 122 2019: 94 2018: 112
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

A collapse in football made a promising year just a four-win campaign, The basketball team was next-to-last in the Sun Belt.

125
Nebraska

Football: 3-9 overall, 1-8 in conference, T6th in Big Ten West
Basketball: 10-22 overall, 4-16 in conference, T13th in Big Ten
2021: 116 2020: 124 2019: 96 2018: 101
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

There were some great moments late in basketball, but that was fleeting. The painful losses in a 3-9 football season were the real problem.

124
Georgia Tech

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-6 in conference, 6th in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 12-20 overall, 5-15 in conference, 14th in ACC
2021: 80 2020: 108 2019: 85 2018: 114
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

A meltdown of six straight losses in football closed things out, and the basketball team wasn’t a whole lot stronger.

123
Georgia Southern

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-6 in conference, 5th in Sun Belt East
Basketball: 13-16 overall, 5-11 in conference, 10th in Sun Belt
2021: 62 2020: 50 2019: 38 2018: 98
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

An odd disappointment after a few strong years, Georgia Southern, was 10th in the Sun Belt in basketball and struggled through a tough football schedule.

122
Bowling Green

Football: 4-8 overall, 2-6 in conference, T4th in MAC East
Basketball: 13-18 overall, 6-14 in conference, T9th in MAC
2021: 102 2020: 103 2019: 99 2018: 112
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

As crazy as it seems, Bowling Green isn’t lower because it was a mild surprise in football with four wins – including a shocker over Minnesota. The basketball side didn’t help the cause.

121
New Mexico

Football: 3-9 overall, 1-7 in conference, in 6th Mountain West, Mountain
Basketball: 13-19 overall, 5-12 in conference, T9th in Mountain West
2021: 121 2020: 111 2019: 120 2018: 95
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

There was a spark late in the season before closing out with five losses in the last seven games. The football team lost eight of its last nine games.

120
San Jose State

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T4th in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 8-23 overall, 1-17 in conference, 12th in Mountain West
2021: 61 2020: 125 2019: 130 2018: 128
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

There weren’t any breaks in football to get to six wins, and the basketball team was among the worst in the country.

119
Cal

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-6 in conference, 4th in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 12-20 overall, 5-15 in conference, 10th in Pac-12
2021: 124 2020: 60 2019: 88 2018: 116
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

COVID was a knee-buckler to what likely would’ve been a bowl campaign in football. The basketball team was awful late in a losing season.

118
Northwestern

Football: 3-9 overall, 1-8 in conference, T6th in Big Ten West
Basketball: 15-16 overall, 7-13 in conference, T10th in Big Ten
2021: 36 2020: 129 2019: 62 2018: 64
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

One of the biggest shockers of 2021 fell off the map. The basketball team was at least entertaining in a losing year, but the football team was an ugly mess.

117
Tulane

Football: 2-10 overall, 1-7 in conference, T9th in AAC
Basketball: 14-15 overall, 10-8 in conference, 5th in AAC
2021: 78 2020: 76 2019: 90 2018: 111
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

At least the basketball team got to the American Athletic Conference tournament semifinal and almost had a winning year. The football team was strange, but it faced a tough schedule.

116
Rice

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-5 in conference, 5th in Conference USA West
Basketball: 16-16 overall, 7-11 in conference, 5th in Conference USA West
2021: 87 2020: 118 2019: 128 2018: 127
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

There were some fun moments in football – the UAB win was a shocker – but it was still a 4-8 season. Basketball was okay early and died late, but it still finished with a .500 record.

115
Syracuse

Football: 5-7 overall, 2-6 in conference, T6th in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 16-17 overall, 9-11 in conference, 9th in ACC
2021: 59 2020: 106 2019: 21 2018: 75
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Everyone had a few laughs in the ACC basketball tournament, but that wasn’t enough. The football team just needed to win one of its last three games to go bowling, and couldn’t do it.

114
Stanford

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-7 in conference, 6th in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 16-16 overall, 8-12 in conference, 9th in Pac-12
2021: 77 2020: 104 2019: 70 2018: 42
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Outside of a win over USC early and a stunner over Oregon, the football season was a dud. The basketball team might have finished with an even record, but it lost seven of its last eight.

113
Vanderbilt

Football: 2-10 overall, 0-8 in conference, 7th in SEC East
Basketball: 17-16 overall, 7-11 in conference, 11th in SEC
2021: 128 2020: 128 2019: 91 2018: 108
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Forget football – it didn’t do much of anything right in a winless SEC season – but the basketball team came up with a winning campaign under Jerry Stackhouse and was more than just competitive.

112
UNLV

Football: 2-10 overall, 2-6 in conference, 6th in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 18-14 overall, 10-8 in conference, 5th in Mountain West
2021: 117 2020: 107 2019: 102 2018: 96
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

As 2-10 football seasons go, this just wasn’t that bad with two wins late in the season and several good battles. The basketball team was okay – it had a winning season – in a great Mountain West.

111
Washington

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-6 in conference, 5th in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 17-15 overall, 11-9 in conference, T5th in Pac-12
2021: 75 2020: 62 2019: 4 2018: 43
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Ugh. Washington was supposed to be good enough in football to compete for the Pac-12 Championship, but that went bye-bye right away. The basketball team finished in the middle of the pack with a winning campaign and got hot late before being bounced in the second round of the Pac-12 Tournament.

110
Temple

Football: 3-9 overall, 1-7 in conference, T9th in AAC
Basketball: 17-12 overall, 10-7 in conference, 4th in AAC
2021: 123 2020: 68 2019: 30 2018: 60
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

There just wasn’t any consistency to the basketball season. The Owls won lots of games, but they got knocked out of the AAC Tournament right away. The football team started strong and closed with seven straight losses.

109
Arkansas State

Football: 2-10 overall, 1-7 in conference, 5th in Sun Belt West
Basketball: 18-11 overall, 8-7 in conference, 6th in Sun Belt
2021: 113 2020: 56 2019: 78 2018: 84
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The 2-10 football season was a massive disappointment for a program that should be a whole lot stronger. Basketball died with a rough two weeks in February, but at least there was a win over ULM in the Sun Belt Tournament.

108
Buffalo

Football: 4-8 overall, 2-6 in conference, T4th in MAC East
Basketball: 19-11 overall, 13-6 in conference, T5th in MAC
2021: 48 2020: 48 2019: 16 2018: 38
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

UB football was so maddening. It had the offense, but it got rocked by Bowling Green and lost its last four games for a losing season. Basketball was even more annoying with a three-game losing streak to close after a nine-game winning run.

107
Charlotte

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T5th in Conference USA East
Basketball: 17-14 overall, 10-5 in conference, 4th in Conference USA East
2021: 114 2020: 75 2019: 122 2018: 129
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Just when it seemed like the 49er basketball team was about to go on a run, it clunked. It closed with four wins in five games before getting knocked out of the first round of the Conference USA Tournament. The football team lost five of its last six to miss out on a bowl.

106
South Alabama

Football: 5-7 overall, 2-6 in conference, T3rd in Sun Belt West
Basketball: 19-11 overall, 9-7 in conference, 5th in Sun Belt
2021: 92 2020: 100 2019: 116 2018: 120
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The Jaguars were close to being good in both sports. The basketball team was too inconsistent over the final month, and the football team couldn’t get one more win over the final four games to get to a bowl.

105
Troy

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, 4th in Sun Belt East
Basketball: 20-11 overall, 10-6 in conference, 4th in Sun Belt
2021: 115 2020: 123 2019: 71 2018: 63
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The Trojans just needed one win in their final three games to go bowling, and they couldn’t get it. The basketball team was having a good season before losing three of its last four.

104
Colorado

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-6 in conference, T4th in Pac-12 South
Basketball: 21-12 overall, 12-8 in conference, 4th in Pac-12
2021: 15 2020: 84 2019: 92 2018: 92
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Colorado gets a little extra push because the finishing kick was fun in hoops, winning eight of nine before getting bounced out of the Pac-12 Tournament and then the NIT. The football team was lousy after a stunning 2020.

103
Florida State

Football: 5-7 overall, 4-4 in conference, T4th in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 17-14 overall, 10-10 in conference, 8th in ACC Atlantic
2021: 35 2020: 28 2019: 48 2018: 65
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

It’s a bit relative for a program that should rock in both sports. Florida State had some fun wins in football – it beat Miami – but it was still a losing season. The basketball team collapsed with a 1-8 run in before the final finishing kick.

102
Navy

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-5 in conference, T6th in AAC
Basketball: 21-11 overall, 12-6 in conference, 2nd in Patriot
2021: 90 2020: 57 2019: 125 2018: 59
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Navy had a solid 21-win season in basketball, but the football team suffered losing season with a rough 4-8 campaign and … Navy 17, Army 13. Nothing else matters.

101
Florida Atlantic

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T5th in Conference USA East
Basketball: 19-14 overall, 11-7 in conference, T2nd in Conference USA East
2021: 74 2020: 33 2019: 97 2018: 65
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Just when it seemed like the basketball team was going to make a run, it lost to UAB in the Conference USA Tournament and got knocked out of the CBI first round. The football side was next-level painful with a four-game losing streak to close when all the Owls had to do was win once more to go bowling.

100
Louisiana Tech

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-6 in conference, T6th in Conference USA West
Basketball: 24-10 overall, 12-6 in conference, 3rd in Conference USA West
2021: 46 2020: 29 2019: 48 2018: 65
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Disappointing for a solid football program, Louisiana Tech lost seven of its last eight games in a clunker of a campaign. The basketball team had a great run late only to fall in the Conference USA Tournament final to UAB to just miss out on the NCAAs.

99
Ohio

Football: 3-9 overall, 3-5 in conference, 3rd in MAC East
Basketball: 24-9 overall, 14-6 in conference, T3rd in MAC
2021: 42 2020: 55 2019: 73 2018: 80
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

Basketball saved football. The Bobcats were among the nation’s bigger disappointments with a 3-9 football season, but the hoops team had a fun year right up until it lost five of its last seven games. However, it won a game in the CBI.

98
Texas State

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-5 in conference, 2nd in Sun Belt West
Basketball: 21-7 overall, 12-3 in conference, 1st in Sun Belt
2021: 84 2020: 93 2019: 98 2018: 119
Category: No Bowl, No NCAAs

The basketball team won the regular season Sun Belt title thanks to nine-game winning streak … and then it got bounced from the conference tournament right away. It wasn’t a great football season, but it won two of the last four.

97
Eastern Michigan

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, T4th in MAC West
Basketball: 10-21 overall, 5-15 in conference, 11th in MAC
2021: 120 2020: 72 2019: 87 2018: 94
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Yeah, Eastern Michigan got rocked by Liberty in the bowl game, but it was still a good year that finished with a swag bag. Getting to a bowl made the ugly basketball season a bit easier.

96
Oregon State

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-4 in conference, 3rd in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 3-28 overall, 1-19 in conference, 12th in Pac-12
2021: 32 2020: 90 2019: 104 2018: 118
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

This one tests the limits of helmets vs. hoops. The Beaver basketball team was competitive, interesting, and lost everything in a brutal three-win season. However, the football team had a winning campaign and got to a bowl thanks to wins over Utah, Washington, and USC.

95
Old Dominion

Football: 6-7 overall, 5-3 in conference, T2nd in Conference USA East
Basketball: 13-19 overall, 8-10 in conference, 5th in Conference USA East
2021: 104 2020: 126 2019: 130 2018: 128
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The Monarch basketball team was okay late, but it wasn’t nearly enough to save the season. The football side had a much better time, coming back from missing all of 2020 to get to a bowl game.

94
Missouri

Football: 6-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T4th in SEC East
Basketball: 12-21 overall, 4-14 in conference, 12th in SEC
2021: 58 2020: 89 2019: 60 2018: 25
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Nothing clicked in either sport, but the football team at least got to a bowl game – and lost to Army. The basketball team only came up with 12 wins and was 12th in the SEC winning just four of its last 16 games.

93
Ball State

Football: 6-7 overall, 4-4 in conference, T4th in MAC West
Basketball: 14-17 overall, 9-10 in conference, 6th in MAC
2021: 49 2020: 97 2019: 118 2018: 99
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

A disappointment after a great 2020, the football team sputtered, but it at least got to a bowl game in what turned out to be a losing season. The basketball side had a chance to improve late, but it lost six of its last nine games.

92
Louisville

Football: 6-7 overall, 4-4 in conference, T4th in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 13-19 overall, 6-14 in conference, T11th in ACC
2021: 93 2020: 17 2019: 75 2018: 46
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Losing to Air Force in the First Responder Bowl wasn’t horrible, but it meant a losing season for the Cardinal football team. The basketball side started okay but lost 12 of the last 14 games.

91
West Virginia

Football: 6-7 overall, 4-5 in conference, T5th in Big 12
Basketball: 16-17 overall, 4-14 in conference, 10th in Big 12
2021: 31 2020: 83 2019: 84 2018: 9
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It should’ve been better overall. The Mountaineer football team had its moments and closed well – it beat Texas – but nothing happened in the bowl loss to Minnesota. The basketball team was stuck in a great year for the Big 12, finishing last in the league.

90
Indiana

Football: 2-10 overall, 0-9 in conference, in Big Ten East
Basketball: 20-13 overall, 9-11 in conference, 9th in Big Ten
2021: 38 2020: 27 2019: 95 2018: 102
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Indiana was everyone’s football darling after the shocking 2020 season, and then it couldn’t win a Big Ten game – and collapsed against Cincinnati. The basketball team was annoyingly bad for stretches, but it did just enough to get into the NCAA First Four and won before getting pantsed in the real first round by Saint Mary’s.

89
UConn

Football: 1-11 overall
Basketball: 23-10 overall, 13-6 in conference, 3rd in Big East
2021: 81 2020: 110 2019: 123 2018: 121
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

New Mexico State 70, UConn 63. The football team was miserable, but the basketball team was fantastic as it appeared ready to do some damage in the NCAAs. One first round loss to New Mexico State made everything else irrelevant.

88
Colorado State

Football: 3-9 overall, 2-6 in conference, T4th in Mountain West, Mountain
Basketball: 25-6 overall, 14-4 in conference, 2nd in Mountain West
2021: 85 2020: 105 2019: 121 2018: 83
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

The football side was a huge disappointment in what should’ve been a bit of a breakthrough season. However, the basketball team had a strong year with top 25 consideration on the way into the NCAAs, but it lost in the first round to Michigan.

87
New Mexico State

Football: 2-10 overall
Basketball: 27-7 overall, 15-5 in conference, T1st in WAC*
2021: 99 2020: 102 2019: 90 2018: 27
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Football, schmootball. It was a brutal year for the Aggies in one sport, but the other won the WAC title and shocked UConn to get to the second round of the NCAAs.

86
Western Michigan

Football: 8-5 overall, 4-4 in conference, T4th in MAC West
Basketball: 8-23 overall, 4-16 in conference, 12th in MAC
2021: 89 2020: 74 2019: 89 2018: 90
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The basketball team was awful, but it at least closed well with four of the eight wins coming in the last seven games. The football team just missed out on playing for the MAC title, but it had a winning season that finished up with a throttling of Nevada in the Quick Lane Bowl.

85
Marshall

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-3 in conference, T2nd in Conference USA East
Basketball: 12-21 overall, 4-14 in conference, 7th in Conference USA East
2021: 53 2020: 51 2019: 38 2018: 24
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The Marshall basketball team went on a ten-game losing streak in the middle of the season and never pulled up out of the nosedive. The football team lost three of its last four games and dropped the New Orleans Bowl to Louisiana, but it was a winning season.

84
Tulsa

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-3 in conference, T3rd in AAC
Basketball: 11-20 overall, 4-14 in conference, 10th in AAC
2021: 52 2020: 85 2019: 107 2018: 104
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Just when it seemed like the football season was lost with a 3-6 start, the Golden Hurricane won four straight to close it out with a bowl win over Old Dominion. The basketball team was able to come up with a few late wins, but the season was a dud.

83
Central Michigan

Football: 9-4 overall, 6-2 in conference, T1st in MAC West
Basketball: 7-23 overall, 6-12 in conference, 8th in MAC
2021: 106 2020: 67 2019: 101 2018: 51
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was a quietly amazing season in football, finishing with five straight wins including a stunner over Washington State in the Sun Bowl. That made up for a basketball team that did a whole lot of nothing with just one win in the final ten games.

82
Akron

Football: 2-10 overall, 1-7 in conference, 7th in MAC East
Basketball: 24-9 overall, 14-6 in conference, T3rd in MAC*
2021: 100 2020: 87 2019: 103 2018: 79
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Oregon State tested the hoops vs. helmets in one way, and Akron goes the other. The football team was a dud with just two wins and no offense. The basketball team, though, closed with eight straight wins to take the MAC Championship before losing to UCLA in the first round of the NCAAs.

81
Boston College

Football: 6-6 overall, 2-6 in conference, T6th in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 13-20 overall, 6-14 in conference, T11th in ACC
2021: 96 2020: 79 2019: 86 2018: 55
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It’s a shame the Eagles weren’t able to play in a bowl game, but it was a solid – but inconsistent – season. The basketball team was competitive, but a brutal 3-10 run late ruined any hopes for anything big. Two ACC Tournament wins made things better, though.

80
Miami University

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-3 in conference, 2nd in MAC East
Basketball: 14-18 overall, 8-12 in conference, 7th in MAC
2021: 88 2020: 61 2019: 112 2018: 110
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The RedHawks came up with a few wins late in the basketball season and closed out 5-5. The football team had a few too many key MAC losses, but the three were by a total of five points. It won the made up Frisco Football Classic bowl game over North Texas.

79
Minnesota

Football: 9-4 overall, 6-3 in conference, 6-3 in Big Ten West
Basketball: 13-17 overall, 4-16 in conference, T13th in Big Ten
2021: 110 2020: 42 2019: 24 2018: 108
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

If the basketball team could’ve done anything other than finish tied for last in the Big Ten … and that includes losing to Penn State in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament. The football team to only got a bowl win over West Virginia, but it beat Wisconsin to screw up the Badgers’ season.

78
Arizona State

Football: 8-5 overall, 6-3 in conference, T2nd in Pac-12 South
Basketball: 14-17 overall, 10-10 in conference, 8th in Pac-12
2021: 94 2020: 23 2019: 29 2018: 52
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It should’ve been a much better year in football, but a bowl loss to Wisconsin and too many losses late soured the fun. It might have been a losing season in basketball, but the team wasn’t that bad.

77
Texas

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-6 in conference, T7th in Big 12
Basketball: 21-11 overall, 10-8 in conference, 4th in Big 12
2021: 9 2020: 37 2019: 33 2018: 26
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

This ranking is a freaking gift. The football team started great, and then it got ripped apart by Caleb Williams and Oklahoma in the second half, and that was it. You don’t lose to Kansas if you’re Texas – at least in football. The ranking is this high because the basketball team was strong and it knocked out Virginia Tech in the first round of the NCAAs. The Longhorns lost to Purdue in the second.

76
Northern Illinois

Football: 9-5 overall, 6-2 in conference, T1st in MAC West*
Basketball: 9-21 overall, 6-14 in conference, 9th in MAC
2021: 130 2020: 89 2019: 56 2018: 82
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

A slew of MAC teams tested the entire Hoops & Helmets philosophy -this is the lowest-ranked school with a football conference championship. Northern Illinois at least closed out a bad basketball season with a win. The football side gets all the love after a turnaround campaign – the school was dead last overall in last year’s rankings – with a MAC Championship. The thriller of a bowl loss to Coastal Carolina didn’t take away from that.

75
NC State

Football: 9-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, T2nd in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 11-21 overall, 4-16 in conference, 15th in ACC
2021: 34 2020: 94 2019: 37 2018: 14
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Helmets stamp out the Hoops on this one. The basketball team went 1-11 to close out an awful year, but the football team overcame that in a big way with nine wins, a stunner over Clemson, and a victory over North Carolina. Unfortunately, the rug was pulled out from under the Wolfpack when UCLA had to tap out on the Holiday Bowl at the last moment.

74
Nevada

Football: 8-5 overall, 5-3 in conference, 3rd in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 13-18 overall, 6-12 in conference, 9th in Mountain West
2021: 57 2020: 52 2019: 20 2018: 76
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football season ended with a rough bowl loss to Western Michigan – star QB Carson Strong didn’t play – but it was still a good overall year. That helped offset a basketball team that had a shot to come up with something fun, but lost five of its last six games.

73
Air Force

Football: 10-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, T1st in Mountain West, Mountain
Basketball: 11-18 overall, 4-13 in conference, 10th in Mountain West
2021: 107 2020: 59 2019: 117 2018: 115
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team won four straight to close out the year and stunned Louisville in the First Responder Bowl. Not only did the Falcons win ten games, but the three losses were all by seven points or fewer. That sort of makes up for a basketball team that went 1-11 to close.

72
Penn State

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-5 in conference, 4th in Big Ten East
Basketball: 14-17 overall, 7-13 in conference, T10th in Big Ten
2021: 112 2020: 8 2019: 69 2018: 30
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The basketball team was actually more entertaining and better than the final standings – it won two Big Ten Tournament games including a knockout of Ohio State. The football team might have been disappointing – it closed 2-6 including a bowl loss to Arkansas – but there were some great wins early.

71
East Carolina

Football: 7-5 overall, 5-3 in conference, T3rd in AAC
Basketball: 15-15 overall, 6-11 in conference, 9th in AAC
2021: 125 2020: 120 2019: 127 2018: 126
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The basketball season ended with a thud, but the Pirates at least had a .500 season and finished tied for third in the AAC regular season. For a football program that struggled for so long, winning seven games and getting bowl eligible – but the Military Bowl against Boston College was canceled – was everything for a starving fan base.

70
Maryland

Football: 7-6 overall, 3-6 in conference, 5th in Big Ten East
Basketball: 15-17 overall, 7-13 in conference, T10th in Big Ten
2021: 39 2020: 82 2019: 55 2018: 91
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team finally showed the ability to break through. It came up with a winning season under Mike Locksley and rolled Virginia Tech 54-10 in the Pinstripe Bowl. Basketball was disappointing with a losing season, but it won four games in five before closing with two straight losses to Michigan State.

69
Kansas State

Football: 8-5 overall, 4-5 in conference, T5th in Big 12
Basketball: 14-17 overall, 6-12 in conference, 9th in Big 12
2021: 111 2020: 69 2019: 59 2018: 13
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The ranking would’ve been much higher if the basketball team didn’t totally collapse with six straight losses to close. The football team sort of sputtered along – there weren’t any amazing wins – but the 42-20 Texas Bowl win over a depleted LSU made everything better.

68
Army

Football: 9-4 overall
Basketball: 15-16 overall, 9-9 in conference, 5th in Patriot League
2021: 45 2020: 114 2019: 66 2018: 72
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Yeah, that football loss to the school the rides boats put a crimp on the season, but the Knights beat Air Force in a thriller, came up with several fun wins, and closed out with a victory over an SEC team in the Armed Forces Bowl, holding on against Missouri. The basketball team died late, but it still finished .500 in the Patriot League.

67
UTSA

Football: 12-2 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in Conference USA West*
Basketball: 10-22 overall, 3-15 in conference, 6th in Conference USA West
2021: 83 2020: 121 2019: 109 2018: 88
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

This is all about the football team. The Roadrunners lost 15 of their last 18 games in a rough year in Conference USA, but the football team started 11-0, took down WKU in the Conference USA Championship, and it got to the Frisco Bowl with a loss to San Diego State. It’s the second-lowest ranked H&H school with a football championship.

66
Ole Miss

Football: 10-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, 2nd in SEC West
Basketball: 13-19 overall, 4-14 in conference, 13th in SEC
2021: 70 2020: 116 2019: 93 2018: 106
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Football is king in Oxford, and it needs to be to overcome a basketball team that went 1-9 to close out a rough year. The football team flamed out in the Sugar Bowl against Baylor – Matt Corral’s ankle injury was disastrous – but winning ten games and taking out Mississippi State, Texas A&M, and LSU made things fun under Lane Kiffin.

65
USC

Football: 4-8 overall, 3-6 in conference, T4th in Pac-12 South
Basketball: 26-8 overall, 14-6 in conference, 3rd in Pac-12
2021: 6 2020: 18 2019: 110 2018: 31
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

The basketball team was great, but it lost four of its last five games including a first round flameout against Miami in the NCAAs. Nothing, though, could overcome a stunningly disastrous football season. On the plus side, all the rough parts led to a possibly giant leap forward with new head coach Lincoln Riley.

64
TCU

Football: 5-7 overall, 3-6 in conference, T7th in Big 12
Basketball: 21-13 overall, 8-10 in conference, T5th in Big 12
2021: 76 2020: 113 2019: 41 2018: 10
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

The Horned Frogs pulled off a shocking win over eventual Big 12 Champion Baylor, but the football team suffered a few rough losses and missed out on a bowl game. The basketball team, though, was fun, getting through the first round of the NCAAs before losing in overtime to Arizona.

63
Utah

Football: 10-4 overall, 8-1 in conference, 1st in Pac-12 South*
Basketball: 11-20 overall, 4-16 in conference, 11th in Pac-12
2021: 82 2020: 40 2019: 35 2018: 33
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The Utes won the Pac-12 Championship and went to the Rose Bowl. Forgetting everything else, it was a breakthrough year for the school and the athletic department. That made up for a rough year in hoops – the team went 4-17 after a good start.

62
Pitt

Football: 11-3 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in ACC Coastal*
Basketball: 11-21 overall, 6-14 in conference, T11th in ACC
2021: 86 2020: 63 2019: 65 2018: 117
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The basketball team was competitive at times, and it beat North Carolina in mid-February, but it was a rough year overall. Whatever … the football team won the ACC Championship along with a double-digit win over Clemson.

61
Hawaii

Football: 6-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T4th in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 17-11 overall, 10-5 in conference, 3rd in Big West
2021: 67 2020: 45 2019: 49 2018: 100
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was disappointing to miss on a bowl game thanks to COVID concerns, but the team still closed with two wins – that was the only fun as the program melted down right after the season. The basketball team didn’t win anything big, but it was a good year in the Big West.

60
Illinois

Football: 5-7 overall, 4-5 in conference, 5th in Big Ten West
Basketball: 23-10 overall, 15-5 in conference, T1st in Big Ten
2021: 44 2020: 26 2019: 119 2018: 125
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Yeah, Illinois won a piece of the Big Ten basketball championship, but it got knocked out right away in the Big Ten Tournament and was bounced out in the first weekend in another disappointing NCAA showing. Illinois missed out on a bowl game, but it showed promise with wins over Penn State, Minnesota, and a rivalry win over Northwestern.

59
Florida

Football: 6-7 overall, 2-6 in conference, 6th in SEC East
Basketball: 19-13 overall, 9-9 in conference, T5th in SEC
2021: 10 2020: 9 2019: 13 2018: 66
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

A win in the NIT before getting blown out didn’t help a disappointing year in hoops, but there was a win over Auburn in a 19-win campaign. The football team had a rough few weeks that led to a regime change, but it still beat Florida State, whacked Tennessee, and pushed Alabama hard. A bowl loss to UCF hurt, though.

58
Oklahoma State

Football: 12-2 overall, 8-1 in conference, 1st in Big 12
Basketball: 15-15 overall, 8-10 in conference, T6th in Big 12
2021: 19 2020: 43 2019: 76 2018: 35
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It stinks that the Oklahoma State sports season was defined a bit by what it wasn’t, but the school finished .500 in basketball and came within six inches – and, really, an injured running back – from winning the Big 12 Championship and possibly getting into the College Football Playoff. A bowl win over Notre Dame eased the pain.

57
Mississippi State

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, T3rd in SEC West
Basketball: 18-16 overall, 8-10 in conference, 10th in SEC
2021: 71 2020: 47 2019: 27 2018: 40
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The seasons in both sports might have ended with a thud – losing four of its last five games in basketball, including in the NIT, and losing to Ole Miss and in the Liberty Bowl to Texas Tech – but the school still had winning seasons in the two.

56
Clemson

Football: 10-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, T2nd in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 17-16 overall, 8-12 in conference, 10th in ACC
2021: 8 2020: 14 2019: 6 2018: 2
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team wasn’t nearly as bad as you think. It a ten-win season with a bowl win – and closing with six straight wins – is considered huge disappointment, you’re pretty good. The basketball team died in February, but it came back to life with five straight wins for a winning campaign.

55
North Texas

Football: 6-7 overall, 5-3 in conference, 3rd in Conference USA West
Basketball: 24-6 overall, 16-2 in conference, 1st in Conference USA West
2021: 40 2020: 96 2019: 45 2018: 50
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team might have lost the Frisco Football Classic to Miami University, but at least it got there thanks to a gut-check five-game winning streak just to get eligible. The basketball team just missed out on the NCAAs – it was the best team in Conference USA in the regular season – but it came up with a win in the NIT.

54
Arizona

Football: 1-11 overall, 1-8 in conference, 6th in Pac-12 South
Basketball: 33-4 overall, 18-2 in conference, 1st in Pac-12*
2021: 95 2020: 91 2019: 111 2018: 19
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Okay, so this ranking is way open to interpretation with so much weight on the basketball side. The football team was totally miserable – it took Cal getting hammered by COVID for the Cats to get a win – and the basketball team was a massive disappointment in the NCAAs, but it won the Pac-12 regular season and tournament titles on the way to the No. 1 seed.

53
Rutgers

Football: 5-8 overall, 2-7 in conference, 5th in Big Ten East
Basketball: 18-14 overall, 12-8 in conference, T4th in Big Ten
2021: 72 2020: 86 2019: 124 2018: 124
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

This is the lowest-ranked team that went to a bowl and got into the NCAA Tournament. Yeah, the Scarlet Knights got to a bowl game, but that’s only because so many teams couldn’t go – Rutgers got whacked by Wake Forest 38-10 in the Gator Bowl. The basketball team didn’t even get to the adult table – it got knocked out in the First Four.

52
Virginia

Football: 6-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, T3rd in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 21-14 overall, 12-8 in conference, 6th in ACC
2021: 28 2020: 11 2019: 1 2018: 20
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The basketball team was disappointing – it didn’t get into the NCAAs – but it made a good run in the NITs. It was a 21-win season in hoops, and even though the football team didn’t get a chance to play in its bowl game, it was eligible thanks to a super-fun offense.

51
Toledo

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-3 in conference, 3rd in MAC West
Basketball: 26-8 overall, 17-3 in conference, 1st in MAC
2021: 54 2020: 88 2019: 46 2018: 37
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Let’s term Toledo’s year as a successful disappointment. The football team should’ve been in the mix for the MAC Championship, and it lost its bowl game to Middle Tennessee. The basketball side rolled to a regular season title, but it lost to Akron in the MAC Tournament and missed out on the NCAAs.

50
Middle Tennessee

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, 4th in Conference USA East
Basketball: 26-11 overall, 13-5 in conference, 1st in Conference USA East
2021: 119 2020: 127 2019: 79 2018: 47
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was a sneaky good season for the Blue Raiders in both sports. The hoops side won the Conference USA regular season title by two games, but it didn’t get an NCAA invite after brutal three-OT loss to UAB in the conference tournament – it ended up in the CBI. The football team rallied late four wins in the last six games to get bowl eligible, and it started out the bowl season with a win over Toledo.

49
Coastal Carolina

Football: 11-2 overall, 6-2 in conference, T2nd in Sun Belt East
Basketball: 18-13 overall, 8-8 in conference, 7th in Sun Belt
2021: 22 2020: 115 2019: 113 2018: 123
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team didn’t even play for the Sun Belt title, but the two losses on the year were by a total of five points. It went on to push past Northern Illinois in the Cure Bowl. The basketball team got knocked out of the Sun Belt Tournament early, but it closed a winning season with six wins in the last seven games.

48
UTEP

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, 4th in Conference USA West
Basketball: 20-14 overall, 11-7 in conference, 4th in Conference USA West
2021: 103 2020: 112 2019: 129 2018: 130
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

UTEP football was good. For a fan base that’s known nothing but pain and sorrow over the years, a winning season and bowl appearance – even with a bowl loss to Fresno State – was amazing. The basketball team wasn’t anything amazing, but it was a winning campaign.

47
South Carolina

Football: 7-6 overall, 3-5 in conference, T4th in SEC East
Basketball: 18-13 overall, 9-9 in conference, T5th in SEC
2021: 126 2020: 95 2019: 57 2018: 44
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

No one expected anything out of South Carolina football in Shane Beamer’s first season, but it came up with wins over Florida and Auburn to become bowl eligible, and it shocked North Carolina in the Duke’s Mayo Bowl. The basketball team hit a wall with losses in three of the last four games, but it was a winning season.

46
Washington State

Football: 7-6 overall, 6-3 in conference, 2nd in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 22-15 overall, 11-9 in conference, T5th in Pac-12
2021: 97 2020: 64 2019: 61 2018: 77
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It’s not the NCAAs, but the basketball team made the NIT Final Four before losing to Texas A&M. It won six of its last seven games before the loss in an interesting year. The football team went through too much drama and adversity only to come away stronger. It lost the Sun Bowl to Central Michigan, but it roared in a 40-13 Apple Cup win over rival Oregon.

45
Liberty

Football: 8-5 overall
Basketball: 22-11 overall, 12-4 in conference, 1st in Atlantic Sun East
2021: 4 2020: 16 2019: 82 2018: NR
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It wasn’t the season everyone was hoping for in football, but it was okay. Losing three in a row to end the regular season stunk, but a blowout bowl win over Eastern Michigan wasn’t bad. The basketball team had a great season before getting knocked out of the Atlantic Sun tournament by Bellarmine.

44
Appalachian State

Football: 10-4 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in Sun Belt East
Basketball: 19-15 overall, 12-6 in conference, 2nd in Sun Belt
2021: 21 2020: 30 2019: 67 2018: 70
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was a rough finish to an otherwise strong basketball season – Appalachian State finished second in the Sun Belt regular campaign – but the football team was able to carry the weight until the end. It got to the Sun Belt Championship, but lost to Louisiana. It got to the Boca Raton Bowl, but got blown out by WKU. It was still a ten-win season.

43
Kent State

Football: 7-7 overall, 6-2 in conference, 1st in MAC East
Basketball: 23-11 overall, 16-4 in conference, 2nd in MAC
2021: 69 2020: 49 2019: 108 2018: 107
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Remembering that being good at football is a new thing for Kent State, getting to the MAC Championship and a bowl game – even if it lost both – was great. The regular season MAC champ was on a 14-game winning streak before losing to Akron in the conference tournament.

42
UCF

Football: 9-4 overall, 5-3 in conference, T3rd in AAC
Basketball: 18-12 overall, 9-9 in conference, 6th in AAC
2021: 65 2020: 41 2019: 10 2018: 34
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

UCF 29, Florida 17. It’s almost impossible to overstate what the Gasparilla Bowl win meant to the UCF fan base. Combine that with the invite to the Big 12 for 2023, and these are fun times. The hoops season wasn’t amazing, but it was a winning run with a top three overall – even if it was shared – finish.

41
BYU

Football: 10-3 overall
Basketball: 24-11 overall, 9-6 in conference, 5th in West Coast
2021: 18 2020: 19 2019: 50 2018: 103
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It would’ve been nice to have done more in the West Coast Conference basketball season, but the team won five of its last six games overall before getting knocked out of the NIT by Washington State. The football team lost its bowl game to UAB, but it beat USC, Utah, Arizona, and Washington State. Most importantly, it got the invite to join the Big 12 in 2023.

40
Oklahoma

Football: 11-2 overall, 7-2 in conference, T2nd in Big 12
Basketball: 19-16 overall, 7-11 in conference, T7th in Big 12
2021: 7 2020: 7 2019: 2 2018: 7
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The Sooners didn’t play in the Big 12 football championship and they lost Lincoln Riley to USC, but they got the call from the SEC to join, they rolled past Oregon in the Alamo Bowl, and they crushed Texas Longhorn souls in a thrilling win. Yeah, they should’ve been invited to the NCAAs with wins over Baylor, Texas Tech, and Arkansas on the resumé, but it’s not like they ripped through the NIT.

39
WKU

Football: 9-5 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in Conference USA East
Basketball: 19-13 overall, 11-7 in conference, T2nd in Conference USA East
2021: 55 2020: 35 2019: 100 2018: 53
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

How much fun was Hilltopper football? The program went from the slow lane to Indy 500 offensively, it played for the Conference USA title, and it ripped up Appalachian State in a bowl game. The basketball team had a strong season with a 9-1 run before losing to Louisiana Tech in the conference tournament.

38
Oregon

Football: 10-4 overall, 7-2 in conference, 1st in Pac-12 North
Basketball: 20-15 overall, 11-9 in conference, T5th in Pac-12
2021: 5 2020: 1 2019: 14 2018: 49
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Try not to focus on what Oregon wasn’t. It lost three of its last four games – two to Utah and a bowl game to Oklahoma – and it suffered a weird loss to Stanford, but it got to the Pac-12 Championship and beat Ohio State. The hoops side couldn’t make the NCAAs and got knocked out of the NIT by Texas A&M, but it was a winning Pac-12 season.

37
Louisiana

Football: 13-1 overall, 8-0 in conference, 1st in Sun Belt West*
Basketball: 16-15 overall, 8-9 in conference, 8th in Sun Belt
2021: 26 2020: 58 2019: 43 2018: 93
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Think about all the 2020 upstart football stars that disappointed – Indiana, Iowa State, San Jose State – but Louisiana rolled to a 13-win season, a Sun Belt Championship, and a bowl win over Marshall. The basketball side wasn’t amazing, but it won six of its last seven before losing to Georgia State in the Sun Belt Tournament final.

36
Fresno State

Football: 10-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, 2nd in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 22-13 overall, 8-9 in conference, T6th in Mountain West
2021: 101 2020: 119 2019: 34 2018: 45
Category: Bowl, No NCAAs

The defense was among the best in the nation. It should’ve made it into the NCAAs, but it ended up in the CollegeInsider tournament and got to the final. The football team won ten games, shocked San Diego State, and pulled off a nice New Mexico Bowl win over UTEP.

35
SMU

Football: 8-4 overall, 4-4 in conference, 6th in AAC
Basketball: 24-9 overall, 13-4 in conference, 2nd in AAC
2021: 51 2020: 36 2019: 115 2018: 57
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The Mustangs were rolling with a 7-0 record in football before collapsing late. They lost four of their last five games and didn’t get to play Virginia in the Fenway Bowl thanks to a COVID issue. The basketball team was solid – it finished second in the AAC in the regular season – but didn’t get an NCAA call and lost in the second round of the NIT.

34
Texas A&M

Football: 8-4 overall, 4-4 in conference, T3rd in SEC West
Basketball: 26-12 overall, 9-9 in conference, T5th in SEC
2021: 33 2020: 46 2019: 63 2018: 23
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was a major snub to keep the Aggies out of the NCAAs, but they had a whole lot of fun getting to the NIT Championship vs. Xavier. The football team should’ve done a bit more – it lost two of the last three games and had to tap out on its bowl invite – but it was a solid year with a win over Alabama.

33
Utah State

Football: 11-3 overall, 6-2 in conference, T1st in Mountain West, Mountain*
Basketball: 18-16 overall, 8-10 in conference, 7th in Mountain West
2021: 66 2020: 25 2019: 15 2018: 86
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

It was a tough February for Utah State basketball, but it was still a winning season and good enough to get into the NIT. The football side was the real star, overcoming an awful 2020 to win 11 games, the Mountain West Championship, and beat Oregon State in the inaugural Los Angeles Bowl.

32
Wake Forest

Football: 11-3 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in ACC Atlantic
Basketball: 25-10 overall, 13-7 in conference, 5th in ACC
2021: 109 2020: 65 2019: 77 2018: 74
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

The football team was technically in the College Football Playoff hunt until late November, and even with a few losses it still got to the ACC Championship. It lost to Pitt, but it rolled Rutgers in the Gator Bowl. The basketball side cranked up 26 wins, but it ended up in the NIT.

31
LSU

Football: 6-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T6th in SEC West
Basketball: 22-12 overall, 9-9 in conference, T5th in SEC
2021: 29 2020: 2 2019: 9 2018: 48
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

It was a weird, weird year. The football team was a huge disappointment, but it rallied to get to a bowl game and got blasted with most of the key parts missing … and the coach was fired.

The basketball team started 15-1, fizzled, got the NCAA Tournament, got knocked out in the first round … and the coach was fired. Even with all of the issues, the school got a bowl game and the NCAAs.

30
Wyoming

Football: 7-6 overall, 2-6 in conference, T4th in Mountain West, Mountain
Basketball: 25-9 overall, 13-5 in conference, 4th in Mountain West
2021: 91 2020: 70 2019: 114 2018: 56
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Wyoming might have been bounced in the First Four loss to Indiana, and it lost six of its last ten games, but it was still a strong hoops season with 25 wins. The football side had a rough run over the second half, but it lit up Kent State to win the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.

29
Memphis

Football: 6-6 overall, 3-5 in conference, T7th in AAC
Basketball: 22-11 overall, 13-5 in conference, 3rd in AAC
2021: 41 2020: 15 2019: 42 2018: 41
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Technically, Memphis is your 2021 Hawaii Bowl champion after Hawaii had to cancel, but it still wasn’t a winning season. Even so, the team got the bowl invite and the basketball side got to the NCAAs. The Tigers took out Mountain West champ Boise State before losing a thriller to Gonzaga.

28
Virginia Tech

Football: 6-7 overall, 4-4 in conference, T3rd in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 23-13 overall, 11-9 in conference, 7th in ACC*
2021: 47 2020: 53 2019: 22 2018: 17
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Ahhhhhh college basketball. You can finish seventh in the regular season conference standings and it means nothing if you can get hot for four days in March. Virginia Tech went from probably being NIT-bound to the NCAAs by winning the ACC Tournament title with shockers over North Carolina and Duke to get it done.

So what if it got knocked out right away in the NCAAs by Texas?

The football team was able to beat rival Virginia, but it was gutted before the 54-10 Pinstripe Bowl loss to Maryland.

27
UAB

Football: 9-4 overall, 6-2 in conference, 2nd in Conference USA West
Basketball: 27-8 overall, 14-4 in conference, 2nd in Conference USA West*
2021: 23 2020: 39 2019: 36 2018: 54
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Very, very good in both sports, UAB went on a roll of seven straight wins on the way to a Conference USA Tournament title and an NCAA bid, It lost in the first round to Houston, but it got a championship. The football team won nine games and stunned BYU in the Independence Bowl.

26
Georgia State

Football: 8-5 overall, 6-2 in conference, T2nd in Sun Belt East
Basketball: 18-11 overall, 9-5 in conference, 3rd in Sun Belt*
2021: 27 2020: 54 2019: 81 2018: 28
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

It was a winning season in both sports with a trip to the NCAAs and a bowl game. Yeah, the Panthers got knocked out of the NCAA Tournament right away against Gonzaga, but they won the Sun Belt Tournament to get there. The football team shocked Coastal Carolina on the way to a 7-1 final run with a blowout bowl win over Ball State.

25
Auburn

Football: 6-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, T6th in SEC West
Basketball: 28-6 overall, 15-3 in conference, 1st in SEC
2021: 68 2020: 13 2019: 7 2018: 5
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The regular season SEC basketball championship was nice, but getting knocked out of the first round of the SEC Tournament was bad and not getting out of the first weekend of the NCAAs was worse. Not closing the deal against Alabama was bad, and not holding up in the Birmingham Bowl loss to Houston was almost as bad to close out the year with five straight losses.

24
Wisconsin

Football: 9-4 overall, 6-3 in conference, T2nd in Big Ten West
Basketball: 25-8 overall, 15-5 in conference, T1st in Big Ten
2021: 17 2020: 4 2019: 25 2018: 61
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Yeah, the Badgers won a piece of the Big Ten regular season basketball title, but they didn’t win it outright after whiffing to lowly Nebraska. They got knocked out of the Big Ten Tournament right away, and had – essentially – home court in the NCAAs and still couldn’t get out of the first weekend. The football team gagged its way out of a Big Ten Championship appearance, but at least it beat Arizona State in a bowl game.

23
San Diego State

Football: 12-2 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in Mountain West, West
Basketball: 23-9 overall, 13-4 in conference, 3rd in Mountain West
2021: 30 2020: 5 2019: 44 2018: 12
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

It was SO disappointing that the football team got hammered by COVID right before the Mountain West Championship, but the 12-win season with a bowl win over UTSA was still fantastic. It also stinks that the Aztecs couldn’t close in a first round NCAA loss to Creighton, but it got to the Mountain West Tournament Championship.

22
Boise State

Football: 7-5 overall, 5-3 in conference, 3rd in Mountain West, Mountain
Basketball: 27-8 overall, 15-3 in conference, 1st in Mountain West*
2021: 43 2020: 22 2019: 68 2018: 561
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

It might have been a disappointment to not get to the Mountain West Championship in football, and it stunk to not be able to play in the Arizona Bowl with COVID issues, but it was still a winning season. Getting knocked out of the first round of the NCAAs by Memphis was awful, but at least the hoops team was the Mountain West champion.

21
Iowa State

Football: 7-6 overall, 5-4 in conference, 4th in Big 12
Basketball: 22-13 overall, 7-11 in conference, T7th in Big 12
2021: 56 2020: 73 2019: 19 2018: 73
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The football team might have been a massive disappointment after all the preseason hype, and the bowl loss to Clemson was a tough way to go out. The basketball team wasn’t anything great, and it had a losing record in the Big 12. So why so high? Thanks to the strong run in the NCAAs – with a win over Wisconsin – it’s one of nine schools to enjoy a bowl and the Sweet 16.

20
Texas Tech

Football: 7-6 overall, 3-6 in conference, T7th in Big 12
Basketball: 27-10 overall, 12-6 in conference, 3rd in Big 12
2021: 73 2020: 92 2019: 32 2018: 22
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

It was a bit of a surprising year in both sports, especially football, to be among the nine schools to make the Sweet 16 and a bowl game. The Red Raiders lost four of their last five regular season games, but they ripped up Mississippi State in the Liberty Bowl. The basketball team had a great season and a decent run in the NCAAs.

19
Duke

Football: 3-9 overall, 0-8 in conference, 7th in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 32-7 overall, 16-4 in conference, 1st in ACC
2021: 98 2020: 80 2019: 12 2018: 15
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Yeah, the football team was totally awful from the start of a bad year with a winless run in the ACC. Whatever – the basketball team made the Final Four in Mike Krzyzewski’s final season. Losing to North Carolina and missing out on the national championship, though, put a sour end to the fun.

18
Cincinnati

Football: 13-1 overall, 8-0 in conference, T1st in AAC
Basketball: 18-15 overall, 7-11 in conference, 8th in AAC
2021: 11 2020: 10 2019: 17 2018: 68
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

Cincinnati might have been whacked by Alabama, but the football team broke through the ceiling to be the first Group of Five program to get into the College Football Playoff. No, the basketball team didn’t get into the big tournament, and it had a losing conference season, but the historic run by the football team offsets everything else.

17
Kansas

Football: 2-10 overall, 1-8 in conference, 10th in Big 12
Basketball: 33-6 overall, 14-4 in conference, T1st in Big 12*
2021: 63 2020: 38 2019: 72 2018: 62
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Yeah, the football team went 2-10? One of those wins was against Texas. The basketball team won a piece of the regular season Big 12 Championship, took down the conference tournament title, and … oh yeah. That national title. All is right in the Jayhawk world.

16
Georgia

Football: 14-1 overall, 8-0 in conference, 1st in SEC East
Basketball: 6-26 overall, 1-17 in conference, 14th in SEC
2021: 24 2020: 34 2019: 58 2018: 32
Category: Bowl Game, No NCAAs

If the basketball team was anything other than totally miserable, the ranking would at least be in the top ten. Of course, basketball doesn’t even exist this season in the Georgia world for a bulk of the fans still partying up after winning the College Football Playoff national title.

Put together every other achievement by every other school, and it doesn’t match what winning the college football national championship means. But, again, really, basketball? Nothing? 

15
Tennessee

Football: 7-6 overall, 4-4 in conference, 3rd in SEC East
Basketball: 27-8 overall, 14-4 in conference, 2nd in SEC*
2021: 64 2020: 44 2019: 52 2018: 69
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The basketball season ended with a massive disappointment in the NCAA second round against Michigan, but the Vols won the SEC Tournament title. The football season ended with a massive disappointment in a Music City Bowl loss to Purdue, but it was a winning season and a breakthrough campaign under Josh Heupel.

14
Ohio State

Football: 11-2 overall, 8-1 in conference, T1st in Big Ten East
Basketball: 20-12 overall, 12-8 in conference, T4th in Big Ten
2021: 2 2020: 6 2019: 3 2018: 3
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The Buckeyes lost two regular season football games for the first time in four years, yet still won a Rose Bowl thriller that bumped them to No. 6 in the final AP poll.

 That’s great, but … the loss to That Team Up North soured everything else.

The basketball team was a 20-12 mixed bag of upsets – beating Duke and Illinois – and disappointments. It finished 2-5 and lost the Big Ten Tournament opener before getting knocked out in the second round of the NCAAs.

13
Michigan State

Football: 11-2 overall, 7-2 in conference, 3rd in Big Ten East
Basketball: 23-13 overall, 11-9 in conference, T7th in Big Ten
2021: 89 2020: 20 2019: 8 2018: 6
Category: No Bowl, NCAA Tournament

Michigan State didn’t win anything truly big – other than pulling off a football victory over Michigan – but it had a shocking breakthrough season under Mel Tucker that finished off with a Peach Bowl win over Pitt. The basketball team won a game in the NCAAs – there’s no shame getting knocked out by Duke.

12
Miami

Football: 7-5 overall, 5-3 in conference, 2nd in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 26-10 overall, 14-6 in conference, 4th in ACC
2021: 60 2020: 78 2019: 83 2018: 8
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

Miami was just okay in football, and it had to cancel its Sun Bowl appearance, but it rallied to win five of its last six to get bowl eligible after a winning campaign. The basketball team was just okay, but it got hot late and made a nice run in the NCAA Tournament.

So why so high in the rankings? In the true spirit of Hoops and Helmets, it’s one of just four schools to be be bowl eligible and get to the Elite Eight.

11
Kentucky

Football: 10-3 overall, 5-3 in conference, 2nd in SEC East
Basketball: 26-8 overall, 14-4 in conference, T2nd in SEC
2021: 108 2020: 12 2019: 11 2018: 18
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The football side was a blast. The Citrus Bowl win over Iowa and a blowout win over rival Louisville – and a win over Florida at home for the first time since 1986 – made this a successful ten-win season.

Here’s the problem. The basketball team was great in a turnaround year, but it didn’t win the SEC regular season or tournament titles. Most importantly, if you’re a 2 seed, and you’re Kentucky – with this fan base – you don’t get bounced out by a 15 in the first round even if Saint Peter’s really was good.

10
Notre Dame

Football: 11-2 overall
Basketball: 24-11 overall, 15-5 in conference, T2nd in ACC
2021: 12 2020: 31 2019: 54 2018: 39
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The bowl loss to Oklahoma State was rough, and just missing out on the College Football Playoff hurt, but it was still a fantastic 11-win season full of terrific performances.

The basketball team finished tied for second in the conference but was relegated to the First Four. It made the most of the opportunity with a win over Rutgers in double overtime and followed it up with a first round win over Alabama.

9
UCLA

Football: 8-4 overall, 6-3 in conference, T2nd in Pac-12 South
Basketball: 27-8 overall, 15-5 in conference, 2nd in Pac-12
2021: 13 2020: 101 2019: 106 2018: 29
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

After three straight losing seasons, Chip Kelly finally broke through by going 8-4, highlighted by a Week 2 upset of then-No. 16 LSU and a historic 62-33 pounding of rival USC.

 There was no bowl appearance after a COVID problem, but the team was at least eligible – finally.

The Bruins hoops failed to make it to the mountain top – lagging behind Arizona in the Pac-12 and losing in the Sweet 16 – but they did go 27-8 for their best season in five years.

8
Purdue

Football: 9-4 overall, 6-3 in conference, T2nd in Big Ten West
Basketball: 29-8 overall, 14-6 in conference, 3rd in Big Ten
2021: 50 2020: 109 2019: 23 2018: 11
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The Spoilermakers had their best football season since the height of the Joe Tiller era 20 years earlier. They shocked two top 5 teams and won the Music City Bowl en route to going 9-4.

Hoops finished 29-8 and third in a deep Big Ten. They fell a game short of winning the league tournament, but made it to the Sweet 16 for the fourth straight year to become one of nine teams to advance that far in the NCAAs and get to a bowl game.

7
Arkansas

Football: 10-3 overall, 4-4 in conference, T3rd in SEC West
Basketball: 28-9 overall, 13-5 in conference, 4th in SEC
2021: 37 2020: 99 2019: 105 2018: 87
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

For the first time in years, football carried its H&H weight in Fayetteville.

The Hogs exploded past expectations to earn nine wins and a Top 25 finish absolutely no one saw coming. 

They closed out with an Outback Bowl win over Penn State, and they rolled on the hardwood, too, going 28-9 and finishing fourth in the conference.

No SEC team went deeper in the tournament than Arkansas, which upset No. 1 Gonzaga to make the Elite Eight.
 North Carolina, Houston, and Miami were the only other schools that got to a bowl game and the Elite Eight.

6
Iowa

Football: 10-4 overall, 7-2 in conference, 1st in Big Ten West
Basketball: 26-10 overall, 12-8 in conference, T4th in Big Ten*
2021: 16 2020: 21 2019: 18 2018: 71
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

There’s a case to be made for Iowa to be even higher than this. After all, it won the Big Ten conference tournament in basketball and got to the Big Ten Championship in football. However …

It didn’t win when it really counted.

The basketball title was made instantly irrelevant after losing to a mediocre Richmond team in the first around, the 42-3 loss to Michigan in the football championship was brutal, and losing the Citrus Bowl to Kentucky hurt.

5
Houston

Football: 12-2 overall, 8-0 in conference, T1st in AAC
Basketball: 32-6 overall, 15-3 in conference, 1st in AAC*
2021: 14 2020: 81 2019: 26 2018: 21
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

One of just four teams to get to a bowl game and make the Elite Eight, the football team was 11-1 before losing to Cincinnati in the American Athletic Conference Championship. It made amends with a thrilling win over Auburn in the Birmingham Bowl.

The basketball team might have run out of steam with an Elite Eight loss to Villanova, but it knocked out Arizona and Illinois after winning the AAC regular season and conference championships.

4
North Carolina

Football: 6-7 overall, 3-5 in conference, 5th in ACC Coastal
Basketball: 28-10 overall, 15-5 in conference, 2nd in ACC
2021: 20 2020: 66 2019: 64 2018: 67
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

The football team might have been a big disappointment, and it might have been a losing season, but the team got to a bowl game and …

It’s the only school to get to the Final Four and be bowl eligible.

Who cares about football? The basketball team ruined Mike Krzyzewski’s final home game at Duke, and then did it again in the Final Four to give the legendary head coach a career record of 49-51 against the Tar Heels.

The loss in the National Championship might be a disappointment, but it was a phenomenal run.

3
Michigan

Football: 12-2 overall, 8-1 in conference, T1st in Big Ten East*
Basketball: 19-15 overall, 11-9 in conference, T7th in Big Ten
2021: 25 2020: 24 2019: 5 2018: 4
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

There’s a case to be made for one of the top two spots based on which group of fans had the most fun. Michigan joined Alabama as the only two teams to make the College Football Playoff and the NCAA Tournament.

If you’re Michigan, you beat Ohio State, won the Big Ten title, got to the College Football Playoff, and surprised as an 11 seed with two big wins to get to the Sweet 16. That’s a good year.

2
Alabama

Football: 13-2 overall, 7-1 in conference, 1st in SEC West*
Basketball: 19-14 overall, 9-9 in conference, T5th in SEC
2021: 1 2020: 32 2019: 31 2018: 1
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

You win the SEC football championship, throttle Cincinnati in the College Football Playoff, and come within – maybe, but let’s go with it – a Jameson Williams knee injury of maybe winning the national title, and you get up this high.

At 19-14, the Tide missed the mark in basketball, but it made the NCAA Tournament with marquee regular season wins over Gonzaga, Houston, Tennessee, Baylor and Arkansas … and got knocked out right away by Notre Dame when it mattered.

1
Baylor

Football: 12-2 overall, 7-2 in conference, T2nd in Big 12*
Basketball: 27-7 overall, 14-4 in conference, 1st in Big 12
2021: 3 2020: 3 2019: 28 2018: 105
Category: Bowl Game, NCAA Tournament

There wasn’t a clear-cut, obvious No. 1, but Baylor at least won a conference title in both sports.

Picked to finish 8th in the Big 12, Baylor won the league championship in football and defeated Ole Miss in the Sugar Bowl to end up No. 5 in the final AP poll – the school’s best-ever year-end ranking. 

The defending national basketball champs went 27-7 and tied Kansas for the top spot in the Big 12 regular season. However, it lost in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament to Oklahoma, and despite an epic comeback against North Carolina, got bounced in the second round of the NCAAs.

The football title – the Bears probably should’ve been in the College Football Playoff – and the regular season co-champ honor was enough to get here.

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