Mavs fall from D-II rankings
As expected, Colorado Mesa dropped out of the national football rankings Monday.
Perhaps a little surprising, though, is that the Mavericks, who have lost two straight games, received zero votes in the American Football Association poll.
Colorado Mesa’s loss two weeks ago to Black Hills State dropped the Mavericks (5-2, 5-2 RMAC) from No. 13 to No. 23 last week. Their 38-31 loss at home Saturday to Dixie State took them out of the poll and not among the nine teams that received at least one vote. Colorado School of Mines picked up 11 votes this week, the third team just outside the top 25.
The national rankings don’t determine playoff spots — those are determined by the regional rankings, which are released the final three weeks of the regular season.
Colorado Mesa is in Super Region 4, which combines the South Central Region (RMAC, Lone Star, Heartland conferences) with the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and Great Lakes Valley Conference. Seven teams from each region receive berths to the playoffs, with the No. 1 seed in each of the four regions receiving a first-round bye. There are no automatic bids for winning conference titles in football.
CMU coach Russ Martin has said all season that every team is capable to beat anyone else, and that’s exactly what’s happened. It could come back to hurt the RMAC champion — or co-champions — when it comes to the playoffs, with teams, in effect, canceling each other out.
Currently, six teams in Super Region 4 are ranked by the AFCA — No. 2 Grand Valley State (Michigan); No. 4 Midwestern State (Texas); No. 9 Texas A&M-Commerce; No. 11 Ashland (Ohio); No. 22 Wayne State (Michigan) and No. 25 Ferris State (Michigan).
In the RMAC, Colorado Mesa has wins over Colorado Mines and CSU-Pueblo, with Mines beating CSU-Pueblo, but losing to Western State, which has also lost to Mesa.
Dixie State defeated Western State and Mesa, but has yet to play CSU-Pueblo and Mines. Black Hills has beaten CMU, but lost to Western State and South Dakota Mines, and faces CSU-Pueblo on Saturday.
What faces Colorado Mesa — along with the other teams in title contention — is four must-win regular-season games, three of which are at Stocker Stadium. First up for the Mavericks is Adams State (1-5, 1-5) on Saturday night at Stocker for homecoming.
The next week is CMU’s final road game of the season, at winless New Mexico Highlands, before wrapping up the conference schedule at home against South Dakota Mines (5-2, 4-2) and their only nonconference game of the season, hosting No. 17 Azusa Pacific (6-1), which lost to Colorado Mines two weeks ago.
The Mavericks’ four-set victory over Colorado School of Mines on Saturday afternoon helped vault CMU into the American Volleyball Coaches Association rankings.
The Mavericks (15-3, 9-1 RMAC) have won seven straight matches and are No. 24 in this week’s poll, right behind Colorado Mines, which fell from No. 18 to No. 22, and Metro State, which moved up two spots from No. 25 to No. 23. During the current winning streak, Mesa has lost only six sets.
Metro State is 9-0 in the conference, with Mesa and Mines one match back at 8-1 — the Mavericks play Metro twice in a five-day span next month.
Also Monday, senior Ali Svorinic was voted the RMAC setter of the week. Svorinic had 64 assists against CU-Colorado Springs and 51 against Colorado Mines.