Thursday, 10 January 2013

Big Board Power Rankings Part Five, Rankings 21-30

It doesn't matter who we are...what matters is our plan. No one cared who we were until we put the rankings up.

After a day break, our rankings are back and ready to cause debates from the BAFA offices all the way to drunken students arguing that their team is better than the kebab they’re about to destroy after a night out.

We’re now moving into the 20’s where we meet the bottom five teams of the official Double Coverage power rankings, the most unbiased rankings in the world...We also meet the five teams who just missed out on the official rankings.

Now loyal readers, it’s time for you to procrastinate from the exam revision and read our rankings! It’s back to the Uni work as soon as you’re done though!

21. UCLan Rams (2-0)
For a team that’s only played one official game, the Rams seem to be getting a lot of love from the DC team...A 12-0 victory over MMU and an awarded 1-0 against the Manchester Tyrants sees the Rams as the only team in the country to still have a 0 in the points conceded column. Whether it will still be low after their remaining fixtures is a different matter. All we know is, out of all the rookie teams, the Rams are looking like the only one that could end up playing the post season.

Mid-season grade – NA – Not enough competitive games to give the team a grade. We’ll give the team a pat on the head and a “well done” instead.

22. Warwick Wolves (2-1)
Before their 48 point loss against the Birmingham Lions, the Warwick Wolves D were averaging five points conceded per game, and given the fact that two of those points were a safety against Northampton, there’s signs that the team is greatly improved on last season. We may be crazy, but we can see the Wolves finishing 7-1 at the end of the season...If you disagree, look at their remaining fixtures. They face DMU, Coventry, Wolverhampton, Notts and Lincoln...that’s a combined 4-13 record!

Mid-season grade – B – Most people would’ve pencilled the Wolves in with a 0-3 record before the season considering that the three teams they faced all beat them in the 2011/12 season. Instead, the Wolves are sitting with a 2-1 record and look on course for a playoff spot for the first time in a long time. Now all they need to do is convince the league they’re not in the Midlands, get moved to a new conference and go to the Championship Playoffs – Derby Braves style.

23. Bradford Bears (3-2)
We really hope that during this Winter break, someone told the Bradford Bears that every game doesn’t need to go into overtime. No, really, you can win a game in regulation! Following losses to the Hull Sharks and York Centurions that dropped the team to 1-2, the Bears dispatched the Sunderland Spartans and Newcastle Raiders to end the year on a two game winning streak and head into 2013 with a winning record. February 17th will decide if the Bears reach the post season in just their second season as they play host to playoff rivals Leeds Carnegie.

Mid-season grade – C – It should be a B, but the Bears were pipped to the post by the York Centurions to end 2012 with a 3-2 record. After finishing 5-2-1 last season, the team will need to win all of their remaining games if they’re going to show improvement in their second season.

24. Hallam Warriors (1-1)
With a number of key losses due to graduation, it’s safe to say that the Warriors are in a rebuilding season after dominating the Northern Conference for the past few seasons. An early defeat to Derby before a not so spectacular 24-0 victory over the Lancaster Bombers sees the Warriors clinging to a spot in the top 25 board after the big board vote. Unfortunately, with only two games played so far, it’s difficult to gather a true bearing on how the Warriors season will play out.

Mid-season grade – D – Not quite the performances we were expecting from the Warriors this season, but we’re sure that they’ll play better in 2013. However, with six games remaining, it’ll be interesting to see if fatigue ends up being a factor in the teams performances this year.

25. Northampton Nemesis (2-2)
Following a loss to the Warwick Wolves in their first game of the season, the Nemesis seemed to find their groove whilst playing on 3G pitches as they defeated the Lincoln Colonials and Nottingham Outlaws 56-32 and 33-16 respectively. In their final game against Loughborough, it looked as if the Nemesis may pull of the biggest upset of the season as they took a 6-0 lead of the Aces and shut their opponents down for a brief period. It wasn’t to be though as the Aces ended up winning 37-6, dropping the Nemesis to 2-2 for the season.

Mid-season grade – B – Last season, the Nemesis played the DW, got to the playoffs, and became the most hated team in BUAFL. This season, they no longer play DW, they’re still winning and could make the playoffs, and nobody seems to talk about them, let alone hate them anymore...That’s good enough for a B in our eyes!

26. Leeds Celtics (3-2)
After making the post season last year, it’s looking like the Celtics are in the thick of it again after finishing 2012 with a 3-2 record. The Celtics have already faced two of their three main playoff rivals so far (Bradford and Hull, both losses), meaning the team will only have to overcome their local rivals Leeds Carnegie to all but guarantee a 6-2 record and the number two/three spot in the NEC.

Mid-season grade – B – Six point losses to both the Bears and Sharks are the only blemishes on the Celtics season so far. Our only concern for the Celtics is their offence. An average of 19 points per game may be good enough for their North Eastern conference, but it won’t be good enough when they’re competing in the post season.

27. BNU Buccaneers (2-2)
When it comes to BNU, there are always a number of opinions within the DC towers as to how high the team should be ranked. Some believe that their two losses should put the team lower down (especially given that they lost by a combined total of 41 points), but others argue that they were playing against two of the top teams in the TVC. Ultimately, the voting put the team at 27th and that seems about fair.

Mid-season grade – C – The record many expected. Wins against the teams they should be, losses against the teams currently better then them. That’s about it really. The team can improve on their grade if they overcome Brighton and Solent in the second half of their season.

28. Gloucester Gladiators (2-1)
On our power rankings vote, the Gladiators did earn a couple of picks from our team of merry men, but not enough to squeeze into the top 25. Nevertheless, the Gladiators have gone from being a team of bottom dwellers to a team who are looking like they could be the new kids on the block at the top of the SWAC. A narrow four point loss against the Blitz before a blowout victory over Bath Spa and a two point nail biter against Swansea firmly puts the team in the playoff mix.

Mid-season grade – A – This is the first time the Gladiators enter a new year with a winning record, and if memory serves us correctly, the Gladiators have also equalled their best ever wins total for a season. Now all they need is two fixtures against Worcester to guarantee a .500 record. Oh, wait...

29. Bristol Barracuda (2-1)
The ‘Cuda were flying high in the SWAC and our power rankings before an utterly dreadful performance against the Plymouth Blitz (15-52 loss) sent them tumbling down the pecking order. However, that loss against the Blitz may have taught the ‘Cuda players and could end up being an instigator in a second half winning streak that carries the team to the playoffs. It will be interesting to see how Bristol’s season plays out.

Mid-season grade – C – We want to give the team a higher grade after their turnaround from last season, but their wins have come against teams with a combined total of one win. If the team can go on a winning streak like we said in their blurb, we will finally be able to give the A or B that they will deserve.

30. Manchester Tyrants (3-2)
Talk about a turnaround. The Tyrants have put their miserable 2011/12 season behind them and now find themselves in the hunt for a playoff spot in the BNWC (unless teams who forfeit a game are now banned from the post season...) With victories over the Huddersfield Hawks, LJM Fury and Staffordshire Stallions so far, the Tyrants should be on course for a .500 season or better.

Mid-season grade – B – If it wasn’t for their forfeit against the UCLan Rams, the Tyrants would’ve earned themselves an A. Fortunately for the team, there’s still time to earn themselves a better grade. For this to happen, they’ll have to win a few more games and supply the DC staff with cake as an apology for their forfeit. (NEW RULE! Any team that forfeits must supply the opposing teams’ committee cake. Genius!)


  1. If Warwick go 7-1, what are the deciders between them and whoever loses out of Loughborough and Birmingham.

    Also - surely NTU have to pissed off - the third best team in the division, but will probably end up 4th (for teh secodn year in a row) due to someone having a soft schedule. Stupid system!

  2. Hahaha, Warwick 7-1? As if


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