1. Northwest Missouri State: The Bearcats aren’t putting up flashy numbers, but they keep winning convincingly. Wouldn’t expect that to change over the next three weekends (Nebraska Kearney, Northeastern State, Central Oklahoma).
2. Pittsburg State: Lost in the glowing numbers the Gorillas’ offense is putting up is the fact that Pittsburg State’s defense is second in the league in scoring defense. Also, John Brown is still really, really good.
3. Missouri Western: The Griffons have been so-so on the road, but they’re still 3-0. A rout should be in store this weekend against Fort Hays State, and then the verdict will be out a week later when Missouri Western ventures to Edmond to take on the Bronchos.
4. Washburn: The Ichabods are only allowing 11 points per game this season. That’s a solid recipe for success.
5. Emporia State: The Hornets will go as far as Brent Wilson will take them. So far he’s been the best quarterback in the league and has proven to be a dual threat on offense.
6. Central Missouri: The Mules finally post their first victory and now have to prepare for Missouri Southern and Pittsburg State after a non-conference clash this weekend.
7. Missouri Southern: The Lions’ rushing attack took a temporary hiatus at Northeastern State but clearly got back on track against Lincoln.
8. Lindenwood: The Lions played with fire in two close games against Lincoln and Southwest Baptist. Once the competition got stiffer, Lindenwood couldn’t keep up after halftime against Central Missouri.
9. Central Oklahoma: The Bronchos are 0-3, but at least they have Josh Birmingham, a threat to score anytime he touches the ball.
10. Nebraska Kearney: The Lopers showed some mettle while hanging tough with Missouri Western over the weekend. A tough slate will awaits Nebraska Kearney, but a win is out there somewhere.
11. Lincoln: The Blue Tigers came crashing back down to Earth after beating Grambling State. Allowing 600-plus rushing yards is a great way to spend a weekend.
12. Southwest Baptist: Hey, the Bearcats were only down by three points at the end of one quarter against Pittsburg State. Then, everyone blinked and the game was over.
13. Fort Hays State: The Tigers’ defense still can’t stop anybody, but at least they’re starting to score some points now.
14. Northeastern State: Injuries have depleted a team that sought respect in the league this year. With reserves seemingly all over the field, the RiverHawks are looking miracles to be able to move the ball on offense.