TAM Rankings: Vanderbilt holds off Ole Miss to be crowned best of 2012 season

vandy anchorCollege football is official over, and there is a new champion in the TAM rankings.  Vanderbilt has dethroned last year’s champion (Arkansas), and now sits alone at the top.  The Commodores also finished the year ranked No. 23 in the AP poll, serving as the only TAM team to finish the year ranked.  Arkansas State received some votes in the AP and USA Today polls after their win against Kent State  in the Godaddy.com Bowl.  Yet their stellar season, and victory over a top 25 opponent in their bowl game, was not enough for them to jump Ole Miss, who had a remarkable season as well.  The Rebels bowl win over Pitt was their first since 2009 and capped off a great first year for head coach Hugh Freeze.  Mississippi State culminated a disappointing second half of their season (the Bulldogs went 2-5 in their last seven games after starting the year 7-0)with an equally disappointing performance in the Taxslayer.com Gator Bowl.  It was a great year for the TAM teams, who posted a 3-1 record in bowl games this year, and provided fans with memorable moments throughout the season.  Next season cannot come fast enough for the TAM teams, and it should be every bit as good as this year.

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.

1. Vandy LogoVanderbilt (9-4): Last week No. 2
Last Game:
W 38-24 vs. N.C.State @ Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl
Best Win: 41-18 Tennessee @ Vanderbilt Stadium
Worst Loss:  48-3 vs. Georgia @ Sanford Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: 2 (Ole Miss and Tennessee)
Losses Against TAM Teams: N/A
2. ole_miss logoOle Miss (7-6): Last week No. 3
Last Game:
W 38-17 vs. Pitt @ BBVA Compass Bowl
Best Win:
41-24 vs. Mississippi State @ Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Worst Loss: 66-31 Texas @ Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: 2 (Arkansas and Mississippi State)
Losses Against TAM Teams: 1 (Vanderbilt)

3. Arkansas State Logo 2Arkansas State (10-3): Last week No. 4
Last Game:
W 17-13 vs. Kent State @ GODADDY.com Bowl
Best Win: 17-13 vs. Kent State @ GODADDY.com Bowl
Worst Loss: 26-13 vs. Western Kentucky @ Liberty Bank Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: 1 (Memphis)
Losses Against TAM Teams: N/A
4.Miss State Logo  Mississippi State (8-5): Last week No. 2
Last Game:
L 34-20 vs. Northwestern @ TAXSLAYER.com Gator Bowl
Best Win:
28-10 vs. Auburn @ Davis Wade Stadium
Worst Loss: 38-13 Texas A&M @ Davis Wade Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: 3 (Tennessee, MTSU, and Arkansas)
Losses Against TAM Teams: 1 (Ole Miss)

5. MTSU Logo MTSU (8-4): Last week No. 5
Last Game:
W 24-21 vs. Troy @ Floyd Stadium
Best Win: 49-28 vs. Georgia Tech @ Bobby Dodd Stadium
Worst Loss: 27-21 vs. McNeese State @ Floyd Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: 1 (Memphis)
Losses Against TAM Teams: 1 (Mississippi State)

6. University-Tennessee-Logo-2 Tennessee (5-7): Last week No. 6
Last Game:
W 37-17 vs. Kentucky @ Neyland Stadium
Best Win: 35-21 vs. North Carolina State @ Georgia Dome
Worst Loss: 41-18 vs. Vanderbilt @ Vanderbilt Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAM Teams: 2 (Mississippi State and Vanderbilt)

7.  Memphis LogoMemphis (4-8): Last week No. 7
Last Game: W 42-24 vs. So. Miss @ Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium
Best Win: 46-9 vs. UAB @ Legion Field
Worst Loss: 20-17 vs. UT-Martin @ Liberty Bowl
Wins Against TAM Teams: 1 (Southern Mississippi)
Losses Against TAM Teams: 2 (Arkansas State and MTSU)

8.  Arkansas logoArkansas (4-8): Last week No. 8
Last Game:
L 20-13 vs. LSU @ Razorback Stadium
Best Win:
24-7 vs. Auburn @ Jordan-Hare Stadium
Worst Loss: 52-0 vs. Alabama @ Razorback Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAM Teams: 2 (Ole Miss and Mississippi State)

9.  Southern Miss logo 2Southern Mississippi (0-12): Last week No. 9
Last Game:
L 42-24 Memphis @ Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium
Best Win: N/A
Worst Loss: 40-14 Boise State @ M.M. Roberts Stadium
Wins Against TAM Teams: N/A
Losses Against TAM Teams: 1 (Memphis)
CJ Hurt covers college football for MemphiSport. Follow him @churtj09 for live tweets from games.

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