Do you buy or sell WKU football in 2015?


On Friday afternoon, our pals at Underdog Dynasty ran a fun piece which they titled Conference USA East Stock Exchange, in which assistant editors Jared Kalmus (who specializes in UTSA) and Jason Jones (specialty in LA Tech coverage) as well as FAU guru Steven Gonzalez, went around the Eastern division of CUSA football for 2015, and gave their opinion of whether they buy, sell or push (could go either way) said team in 2015. Here is the complete list of buy/sell/push, but for the explanations, you’ll have to click on the link above (which, I highly recommend reading).

  • FIU: 2 Sell, 1 Buy
  • FAU: 3 Buy
  • Marshall: 2 Sell, 1 Buy
  • MTSU: 2 Buy, 1 Push
  • Old Dominion: 3 Buy

And then came their predictions for the Hilltoppers in 2015. Which, to say the least, left me puzzled as to why the…you know what, just read for yourself.

First up, was Jason Jones (who, in all fairness, did get the best view of the Tops when LA Tech walloped them 59-10):

"Jason: Push. I like WKU almost as much as I do Marshall and MTSU, but the Hilltoppers haven’t been playing FBS level football for near as long. Can they be a consistent winner like they are in basketball? They are a little further away from the recruiting hotbeds in the South, and they don’t have the financial advantages of the other new schools.– Jason Jones of on WKU football in 2015"

Okay, fair points by Mr. Jones. For the most part. The one thing I don’t buy (no pun intended. Well, actually…) is questioning the Tops as being a “consistent winner.” They won in their final years in the Sun Belt in first year in C-USA, making the transition near seamless (minus a few defensive mishaps). Maybe he just needs to see more Conference USA winning, or maybe I’m just too close to the Tops to see things for what they are, but that’s really my only flaw with his argument.

Next up, we have Mr. Gonzalez, who is the only Sun Belt/C-USA guy on the panel:

"Steven: Buy. It was only a matter of time, but anyone that saw their performances in the Sun Belt could tell you that the Toppers were only a few pieces away from being a great team. 2015 looks to be their year and while it will eventually be difficult to replace Brandon Doughty, WKU has recovered from worse.– Steven Gonzalez of on WKU football in 2015"

More from Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

I’ll go ahead and spoil the ending for you – Steven was the lone guy to “buy,” the Hilltoppers. And he’s exactly right – back in the latter years of the Sun Belt era, especially that 2011 season, they were so close (Arky State at home, anyone?) to


breaking that dreaded home losing streak, but once they did, they were unstoppable (until they ran into #1 LSU). They’ve somehow parlayed that success into four straight years of a winning record, two bowl games and a miracle bowl win. This, essentially, goes against the whole argument Jason Jones had in his “push” choice of WKU. Also, Doughty isn’t going anywhere. Don’t you worry about that.

Finally, we have the thoughts of Jared:

"Jared: Push. Jeff Brohm made an immediate impact in his first year at WKU, leading the Hilltoppers to nine wins including an upset over Marshall. Brohm has made local recruiting a focus but Kentucky doesn’t offer the same talent level as Florida, Texas or Virginia. WKU has had the most immediate success of the Sunbelt call-ups but still need some facility upgrades to sustain long term success.– Jared Kalmus of on WKU football in 2015"

First off, I’m not quite sure what facilities have to do with on-field success. Second, the WKU football facilities are actually quite nice. Thirdly, while yes, Kentucky football talent isn’t necessarily as good (or, at least, perceived to be as good) as those states mentioned above (except for Virginia…I’ve never thought of Virginia as a recruiting hot bed, but I’m from Georgia, so I’m a little biased), but think about it – are FIU, FAU or any of the Texas’ schools getting top-tiered recruits from their state? No. They’re fourth, fifth or sixth options for a lot of guys. Where as, while UofL and UK have the name recognition in Kentucky, they’re not football powerhouses, meaning in the near future, if WKU continues this success, why wouldn’t they be able to snag a top-tier Bluegrass recruit. (Uh, hello, Reese Ryananyone?)

Okay, so maybe UDD didn’t get it perfect. But at least they tried, right? What would you tell the panel of judges about how they voted the Tops? Let us know in a comment below, or by tweeting us @WaveTheRedTowel.