This post is the core of a 26 week, 25+ post series, updating every Sunday.
Last updated: August 2, 2020
We ranked every single Division I College Football program by overall-performance the past three seasons, #1-256.
Why three seasons?
- Three years is a great encapsulation of what could be called “recent memory”.
- Three years is short enough to include core groups of consistent athletes and staff, for special recognition.
- Three years is long enough to establish averages and trends that can provide usable insights for the coming Fall.
This post will act as a running log of all conference winners, with updated #1-256 rankings graphics to show each winner’s conference rivals ranked behind them. Each Super Squad will receive a focused article, graphic, and [with your help] a physical memento highlighting their successes too.
Starting with the least of all conference winners in Week 1, a higher-ranking winner will be announced each Sunday going forward.
About Super Squad Rating
Super Squad Ratings range 0-100, heavily-weighed toward zero. A 100.0 rating is only achievable for a team that finishes #1 in College Football all three years, with a 100+ power rating each year. The top three 2020 Super Squads rate in at 78, 57, and 47, respectively.
Best thought of as a notoriety score:
“How many normal people out of 100 should recognize this program’s success the last three years?”
Consider an SSR (Super Squad Rating) of 78 to abstractly mean that program deserves 78% of Americans’ attention.
Conversely a program with a 1.1 SSR would be worth the attention of only 11 out of 1,000 Americans.
- Top 10 Countdown & 2020 Division I Super Squad (Aug 16)
Most Dominant Program in College Football, 2017-2019 Seasons
- I | Atlantic Coast Conference 2020 Super Squad
- II | Southeastern Conference 2020 Super Squad
- III | Big Ten Conference 2020 Super Squad
- IV | Big 12 Conference 2020 Super Squad
- V | College Football Independents 2020 Super Squad
- VI | Missouri Valley Conference 2020 Super Squad
- VII | Pacific-12 Conference 2020 Super Squad
- VIII | American Athletic Conference 2020 Super Squad
- VIV | Colonial Athletic Association 2020 Super Squad
- X | Mountain West 2020 Super Squad
- XI | Sun Belt 2020 Super Squad
- XII | Ivy League 2020 Super Squad
- XIII | Conference USA 2020 Super Squad
- XIV | Big South Conference 2020 Super Squad
- XV | Big Sky Conference 2020 Super Squad
- XVI | Mid-American Conference 2020 Super Squad
- XVII | MEAC 2020 Super Squad
- XVIII | Pioneer League 2020 Super Squad
- XIX | Southern Conference 2020 Super Squad
- XX | Ohio Valley 2020 Super Squad
- XXI | Patriot League 2020 Super Squad
- XXII | Southland Conference 2020 Super Squad
- XXIII | SWAC 2020 Super Squad
- XXIV | Northeast Conference 2020 Super Squad
Sunday, August 2, 2020
2020 ACC Super Squad I – [Top 10] Clemson Tigers
77.8 Super Squad Rating
3 ACC Titles
3 CFP Appearances
1 CFP National Title (2018)
#2, #1, #2
#1 Overall, 15-0 Finish
Sunday, July 26, 2020
2020 SEC Super Squad II – [Top 10] Alabama Crimson Tide
56.9 Super Squad Rating
1 SEC Title
1 Bowl Victory
1 CFP National Runner-up
1 CFP National Title
#1, #2, #7
#1 Overall, 13-1 Finish
Sunday, July 19, 2020
2020 Big Ten Super Squad III – [Top 10] Ohio State Buckeyes
45.3 Super Squad Rating
25-2 Big Ten
3 Big Ten Titles
2 Bowl Victories
1 CFP Semi-Final Appearance
#4, #5, #3
#3 Overall, 13-1 Finish
Sunday, July 12, 2020
2020 Big 12 Super Squad IV – [Top 10] Oklahoma Sooners
37.3 Super Squad Rating
24-3 Big 12
3 Big 12 Titles
3 CFP Semi-Final Appearances
#5, #3, #9
#3 Overall, 12-2 Finish
It’s again no surprise finding one of College Football’s most perennially-powerful programs high up on this list.
This time with the strongest band of runners-up we’ve seen yet, five Big 12 teams in Top 25 and nine in the Top 60, the Sooners still managed to be a clear step above the rest.
For more information on how the entire Big 12 Conference ranks in recent memory:
Sunday, July 5, 2020
32.1 Super Squad Rating
National Playoff Appearance (2018)
Two Bowl Titles (2017, 2019)
#7, #6, #8
It’s no surprise finding one of College Football’s most esteemed historical programs high up on this list. Their sub-par cohort of fellow independents make this title alone doubly shrug-worthy.
That said, this squad of 49 young Irish athletes present all three years has performed impeccably. They can brag of an undefeated regular season (2018), a playoff appearance thwarted by the eventual national champ (2018), and two strong bowl wins over respectable LSU (2017) and Iowa State (2019) foes.
For more information on how the other Independent college football programs landed:
Sunday, June 28, 2020
24.1 Super Squad Rating
23-1 Missouri Valley
3 Missouri Valley Titles
3 FCS National Titles
#11, #7, #17
For the uninitiated, here are just a few of our favorite Bison accolades:
- 45-1 last three years. More Wins and fewer Losses than any D1 team.
- Holds eight of last nine FCS National Titles.
- More-than-tripled their opponents scores each of last three years.
- 6-0 vs FBS teams in 2010s, impressively last-beating Iowa in 2016.
- Five NFL draftees in the last five years, 10 active NFL players.
For the thoroughly curious, here’s an even-sharper rundown of this program’s decade of dominance:
And for those curious how their conference rivals rank:
Sunday, June 21, 2020
19.7 Super Squad Rating
1 Pac-12 Title (2018)
#16, #16, #15
Sunday, June 14, 2020
16.3 Super Squad Rating
22-2 American Athletic
2 American Athletic Titles
#12, #27, #28
Sunday, June 7, 2020
15.0 Super Squad Rating
2 CAA Titles
#13, #52, #18
Sunday, May 31, 2020
12.1 Super Squad Rating
22-2 Mountain West
2 Mountain West Titles
#33, #42, #26
With two Mountain West titles, only two Mountain West game losses, and a history of stalking the Top 25, this week’s title winner was an easy one to guess.
How’d the rest of the conference pan out?
Sunday, May 24, 2020
11.0 Super Squad Rating
21-3 Sun Belt
3 Sun Belt Titles
(2017 shared, 2018-2019)
#62, #34, #25
This lifetime Wolverines fan doesn’t feel like re-living Appalachian State’s accolades twice. They’re the obvious choice for four straight conference titles and five straight bowl wins AND IT’S BEEN THIRTEEN YEARS AND WE’RE STILL NOT OVER IT ALL RIGHT!?
But in seriousness, this squad’s been awesome. Read our summary.
Sunday, May 17, 2020
9.4 Super Squad Rating
17-4 Ivy League
1 Ivy League Title
#87, #24, #48
College football’s academic powerhouse conference also perpetually hosts some of the best squads in the FCS.
With the Ivy League having hosted four title winners in three years, our week 13 super squad was particularly close. The runner-up Princeton Tigers were edged-out by mere decimal points, falling only one spot behind our winner on the full rankings list.
Sunday, May 10, 2020
9.0 Super Squad Rating
18-6 Conference USA
2 Conference USA Titles
#32, #111, #32
While our spotlight on the Ohio Bobcats showed zero conference titles but near-top finishes each year with respectable winning records, these FAU Owls were high and low and high again, crushing Conference USA opponents in 2017 and 2019, but losing more than half their games the year between.
Congratulations Owls for the HOOT-worthy 2019 turnaround, and for snagging this budding title!
Here’s your countdown of everyone else.
Sunday, May 3, 2020
8.3 Super Squad Rating
14-1 Big South
2 Big South Titles
Having twice as many league titles as league-game losses in three years make the Kennesaw State Owls our easy next pick.
Standing atop an arguably-weaker conference than our last winner Weber State out of the Big Sky, Kennesaw State does so solidly – nearly 50 positions ahead of their next Big South contender. In both teams best season (2017), the Owls coincidentally finished one position ahead of the Wildcats, at #5-6 (FCS) and #43-44 (CFB), respectively.
Congratulations Kennesaw State Owls for owning the Big South Conference for the majority of the past three seasons!
Here’s the detailed rundown of everyone else.
Sunday, April 26, 2020
8.2 Super Squad Rating
21-3 Big Sky
3 Big Sky Championships
With hands in three Big Sky titles, three good FCS playoff runs, and only three FCS losses in our analyzed three year period, this week’s choice was rather simple.
Congratulations Weber State Wildcats for rocking the Big Sky Conference for the past three seasons!
Here’s a countdown of everyone else.
Sunday, April 19, 2020
6.9 Super Squad Rating
16-8 Pioneer League
0 MAC Championships
Ohio was one of the tighter winners in front of one of the tightest conferences that we’ve graded to date.
There have been three different MAC Football Champions the last three years, and even more, six different teams playing in those three championship games.
Amidst such a cluster, Ohio‘s three bowl wins and constant cling to the top of the crowd was enough to snag them the honor.
Congratulations Ohio Bobcats! For how the rest of the conference panned out:
Sunday, April 12, 2020
6.4 Super Squad Rating
20-3 Pioneer League
3 League Championships
Much like last week’s pick, this one wasn’t even close.
While the Aggies (Hey, that was my High School mascot!) did drop an average of one conference match-up per year over this period, they still stand monolith within the MEAC, outranking their runner-up contender by 111 positions!
For a not-so-fun fact about this HBCU, it’s split between two North Carolina U.S. congressional districts, a rarity for a single college campus and widely-considered a deliberate move to disenfranchise A&T’s students at the ballot. While that has nothing to do with football, Hierank values our readers’ power to exercise their sovereignty; and that goes doubly for our Super Squad winners dammit.
Sunday, April 5, 2020
6.3 Super Squad Rating
24-0 Pioneer League
3 League Championships
San Diego might just be the most dominant football team for their Division I conference of the entire last decade. Being our first winner with three unanimous conference titles over the select-period, the Toreros have actually succeeded to win the last six, five unanimously, as well as eight of the last nine titles and 11 of the last 15.
They’re only one Pioneer League title short of overtaking Dayton’s all-time leading 12, and already have scored the most of any team unanimously, with seven.
The Toreros dominance doesn’t just go back either, it goes big. This particular squad of three-year veterans, and the entire 2020 Torero player roster will have never lost a Pioneer League contest going into this Fall! And while they significantly outscored the competition every year, in 2017 this squad outscored their Pioneer League opponents at an impressive rate of nearly 4-to-1!
This degree of untouchability among peers puts San Diego 73 positions above their nearest league competition in this contest, 131 positions better than their average Pioneer League contender (#212), and 11 positions ahead of our most recent winner, the #92 Wofford Terriers.
To see how the lesser teams in San Diego’s conference have fared since Fall three years ago, check out our detailed Pioneer League Super Squad countdown.
Sunday, March 29, 2020
6.0 Super Squad Rating
20-4 Southern Conference
3 League Championships
Wofford has been a team without equal in the Southern Conference since Fall of 2017. Our first winner with three conference titles in the three seasons, the Terriers have proven dominant, but not infallible with at least one conference loss each time through. They’re not in a bad position to repeat the Super Squad title next year, if they aren’t overtaken by the Furman Paladins, their next-trailing contender.
After the Paladins, how does the rest of the conference look?
Sunday, March 22, 2020
5.2 Super Squad Rating
18-6 Ohio Valley Conference
2 League Championships
We started awarding Super Squads just in the nick of time, if not too late, for Jacksonville State. The Gamecocks completely-owned their conference with five titles and only one Ohio Valley in-game loss over all five 2014-2018 seasons. Unfortunately though, 2019 ended quite mediocre for the Gamecocks, leaving the 2021 Ohio Valley Super Squad title a toss-up between them and rising Austin Peay and SE Missouri State programs.
Speaking of the competition, how did the rest of the conference pan out?
Sunday, March 15, 2020
4.8 Super Squad Rating
14-4 Patriot League
2 League Championships
After a week with our most-disputable winner to-date, we’ve returned to conference dominance. The Raiders won their conference title twice over the three years, and were the only Patriot League team to finish with an overall winning record.
Read more about how the Patriot League ranked!
Sunday, March 8, 2020
4.7 Super Squad Rating
0 Southland Championships
Our first winner not to grab two conference championships, or one for that matter, is the Sam Houston State Bearkats.
Their position on this list rather, can be attributed to three solid seasons, including the best single season performance yet, #7 in the FCS and in the Top 50 teams overall after a deep FCS Playoff run in 2017-18.
Read more about how the Southland Conference teams ranked!
Sunday, March 1, 2020
4.6 Super Squad Rating
2 SWAC Championships
While this analysis only went back three years to include most upperclassmen players, Alcorn State has been at the top of their game for double that length. They’ve appeared in their conference championship game for six years straight, snagging four titles.
One of their conference rivals actually had the best single season over our analysis period, but Alcorn’s overall-consistency and their titles the other two years earn them this award without question.
Sunday, February 23, 2020
4.1 Super Squad Rating
17-2 Northeast Conference
2 NEC Championships
The team, hailing from New Britain, CT rings in as our lowest-ranking Super Squad of 2020, but is awarded here for being their conference’s top performer across the last three seasons.
Ranking #144 overall, Central Connecticut led all of their Northeast Conference rivals, winning two championships and only taking two conferences losses in three years!
We ranked them 2nd (#147), 3rd (#163), and 1st (#110) within their conference each of the three years, and coming off an 11-2 season, this team may still be hot!
For an in-depth look at how the Northeast Conference shook out, visit the full write-up, here.
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