Week 1 TAM Football Rankings: Razorbacks start 2012 season at No. 1

College football made its triumphant return this past week, and along with it is our TAM ranking.  Arkansas starts this year where they ended it last year, at No. 1. While both Arkansas State and Southern Miss both fall out of the top three thanks to embarrassing blow out losses to Oregon and Nebraska respectively.  Vanderbilt gave South Carolina all they could handle, but came up short in the end. Mississippi State and Ole Miss both man handled FCS opponents, but Memphis and MTSU were both upset by FCS foes.  Tennessee had the most impressive win by a TAM team this week with their victory over North Carolina State.  Week one is in the books and it is time to unveil the week one TAM rankings.

 

1.  Arkansas (1-0):
Arkansas took care of business against Jacksonville State.  Tyler Wilson threw for 367 yards and three touchdowns in the contest.  The Razorbacks were wondering who was going to step up in the passing game after they lost some playmakers at receiver.  Tight end Chris Gragg filled that void nicely against Jacksonville State.  He had seven catches for 110 yards and two touchdowns, and might be the playmaker Wilson and the Razorbacks need to help the offense out in the passing game.  Louisiana Monroe is up next and then Alabama (the No. 1 ranked team in the nation) comes to town.
Last Game: W 49-24 vs. Jacksonville State @ Little Rock Arkansas
Next Game:  vs. Louisiana Monroe @ Little Rock Arkansas
Best Win:  49-24 vs. Jacksonville State @ Little Rock Arkansas
Worst Loss:  N/A
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

2.  Tennessee (1-0):
Are the Vols back? Maybe. Maybe not. Beating North Carolina State is certainly the right step on the road back to national prominence.  Tyler Bray was spectacular throwing for 333 yards and two touchdowns.  Cordarrelle Patterson’s performance in his first game in a Volunteer uniform was special as he caught six balls for 93 yards and two touchdowns.  The defense helped out by forcing four interceptions on the day.  Georgia State is next, but all eyes are on their matchup in two weeks with rival Florida.

Last Game:  
W 35-21 vs. North Carolina State @ Georgia Dome
Next Game: 
vs.  Georgia State @ Neyland Stadium
Best Win: 35-21 vs. North Carolina State @ Georgia Dome
Worst Loss: 
N/A
Wins Against TAMs Teams:
N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

3.  Mississippi State (1-0):
Talk about balanced attacks.  The Bulldogs passed for 183 yards and rushed for 194 yards in their first game of the season.  They also returned two interceptions, one by Darius Slay and the other by Matthew Wells, for touchdowns.  They will need a solid effort if they are going to beat Auburn, and give Dan Mullin his first win over a SEC West opponent not named Ole Miss on Saturday.
Last Game: W 56-9 vs. Jackson State @ Davis Wade Stadium
Next Game:  vs. Auburn @ Davis Wade Stadium
Best Win: 56-9 vs. Jackson State @ Davis Wade Stadium
Worst Loss:  N/A
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

4.  Vanderbilt (0-1):
Vandy gave South Carolina all they could handle in their Thursday night SEC opener, but came up short at the end thanks to a missed pass interference call.  Jordan Matthews looked like a star catching 8 passes for 147 yards and one touchdown.  There is no time for the Commodores to lick their wounds as next up is a trip to Northwestern.
Last Game: 
L 17-13 vs. South Carolina @ Vanderbilt Stadium
Next Game:  vs. Northwestern @ Ryan Field
Best Win:  N/A
Worst Loss: 17-13 vs. South Carolina @ Vanderbilt Stadium
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

 5. Ole Miss (1-0):
Ole Miss trailed 20-14 at halftime, but scored 35 second half points while allowing only seven to get the win over UCA.  Bo Wallace accounted for 346 total yards and three touchdowns on 264 yards passing and 82 yards rushing.  The Rebels defense looked sloppy in their season opener, and will need to improve on the defensive side of the ball if they are going to compete in the SEC.  Up next for Ole Miss is UTEP and then the Texas Longhorns come to town.
Last Game: W 49-27 vs. UCA @ Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Next Game: vs. UTEP @ Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Best Win:  49-27 vs. UCA @ Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Worst Loss:  N/A
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

6. Arkansas State (0-1):
It was clear early on that the Red Wolves were going to be no match for Oregon.  Arkansas State gave up 29 first quarter points on their way to allowing 50 first half points to the mighty Ducks of Oregon.  Luckily for Red Wolves fans Memphis is coming to town this Saturday, so you can expect Arkansas State to get their first win of the year.
Last Game:  L 57-34 vs. Oregon @ Autzen Stadium
Next Game:  vs. Memphis @ ASU Stadium
Best Win:  N/A
Worst Loss:  57-34 vs. Oregon @ Autzen Stadium
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

7. Southern Mississippi (0-1):  
Austin Davis was missed severely in the Golden Eagles loss to Nebraska, as Southern Miss threw for only 75 yards in the game.  The Golden Eagles were also dominated on the defensive side of the ball, giving up 632 total yards to the Cornhuskers.  Thankfully the Golden Eagles have a bye week to regroup before they begin C-USA play with East Carolina.    
Last Game: 
L 49-20 vs. Nebraska @ Memorial Stadium
Next Game: vs. East Carolina @ M.M. Roberts Stadium
Best Win:  N/A
Worst Loss:  49-20 vs. Nebraska @ Memorial Stadium
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

8.  Memphis (0-1):
This is certainly one of the worst losses in the history of the University of Memphis football program.  Costly turnovers and inopportune penalties led to the Skyhawks kicking the game winning field goal with just four seconds left.  Coach Fuente must get his player to regroup and forget about last week’s blunder if the Tigers are going to be able to avenge the 44 point beat down they took last year in Jonesboro.   
Last Game:
L 20-17 vs. UT-Martin @ Liberty Bowl
Next Game:  vs. Arkansas State @ ASU Stadium
Best Win: N/A
Worst Loss:  20-17 vs. UT-Martin @ Liberty Bowl
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

9.  MTSU (0-1):
The Blue Raiders were dominated by FCS opponent McNeese State.  They trailed 23-6 at the end of the third quarter and allowed 298 rushing yards.  Coach Stockstill was on the hot seat before the season started, and the seat has now burned a hole through his pants.  MTSU plays Florida Atlantic at home with a chance to save their season and their coaches job, but it might be too little too late for Stockstill.
Last Game: 
L 27-21 vs. McNeese State @ Floyd Stadium
Next Game:   vs. Florida Atlantic @ Floyd Stadium
Best Win: N/A
Worst Loss:  27-21 vs. McNeese State @ Floyd Stadium
Wins Against TAMs Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAMs Teams: N/A

Other college football articles:

The Mid-South is full of fans with allegiances to different area college football programs. Which FBS program in the three states surrounding the Memphis area is the best? To help end some arguments and start others, every week MemphiSport ranks all the college football teams in Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi . We call it the TAM Rankings.

CJ Hurt covers college football for MemphiSport. Follow him @churtj09 for live tweets from games.

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