Welcome back to the Power Rankings!
DC’s light may not shine all that much longer unless we can figure something out, but dammit let’s see if it can at least shine brightly – with all the goodies and oldies!
Moving on to Division One:
Northumbria Mustangs – The Mustangs’ twitter feed told quite a story on Sunday. The tense wait to hear news from the Hull-Sunderland game, fearing what a Spartans’ win might mean force Northumbria… To suddenly celebrating a huge upset victory over the conference favourites… To learning it was a DoubleHeader and the Mustangs were suddenly in the running for the top spot in the 1A North!
Thanks to their Fairy BUCSMother, the Mustangs leapt from battling relegation to contending for the crown in one fell swoop on Sunday… Unfortunately, DC don’t give double credit for single victories, so the Mustangs sit just on the cusp of a ranking spot.
UCLan Rams – While every team and its dog seems to be beating Hallam lately, none have managed in so convincing-a-fashion so far as the Rams. It wasn’t quite enough to steal the head-to-head over the Warriors, but it does move them into the driving seat in the 1A Yorkshire.
A win this weekend against the Gryphons snags the crown – a convincing one should rocket the Rams up the ranks.
10 – Edinburgh Napier Knights
We’d just about written off the Knights’ Conference Crown chances, but the head-turning Tigers-Mustangs double-headed upset has sent things into disarray in the 1A North.
At 4-2 and having already defeated both of their remaining opponents comfortably once already this season? Edinburgh Napier suddenly find themselves in the driving seat in the North once more – win out and it’ll be a third-straight conference crown for the Scotsmen.
9 – Glasgow Tigers
(4-3-0) 1A North
The Tigers take a BIG tumble following their narrow loss to Northumbria on Sunday – the upset defeat’s impact enhanced by the fact it went down as a DoubleHeader.
Glasgow have gone from looking like they could walk their way to a conference crown following their second win over Napier, to suddenly being at real risk of missing playoffs entirely if they can’t win their final fixture of the year against the Sharks – who’ve already bested the Tigers once this season.
8 – UWE Bullets
(4-1-0) 1A South West
Crunch time for the Bullets who can take their fate into their own hands if they can best the table-topping Blitz at the weekend. A loss for UWE locks up the South West for the South Coasters, while a Bullets victory might mean a mad dash from the Bristol side to squeeze in their currently missing game against the Cobras.
7 – Brunel Burners
(5-1-0) 1A South
Burners blast up a couple of spots thanks to their doubleheader win over the Saxons.
The two wins for the price of one has given Brunel a real boost, and potentially even makes them frontrunners for the 1A South title – while Kingston have the head to head, a game missing off the Cougars’ slate from earlier in the season could allow the Burners to out-point the Cougars and steal the top spot.
If the Burners win out and the Cougars can’t reschedule their game against Reading? We could see yet another promotee contending for back-to-back titles.
6 – Plymouth Blitz
(6-1-0) 1A South West
Blitz climb a spot following a comfortable victory over the Cobras at the weekend. The South coast side showed their typically-strong form on their home-turf and can seal the deal on a third-straight conference crown on Sunday.
5- Kingston Cougars
(5-1-0) 1A South
The Cougars offence is on top form lately, with two big wins to bounce back from their loss to the Burners. However, it might be their backroom staff that has the biggest challenge ahead of them in the coming weeks – finding a way to schedule the missing game against the Reading Knights before the season is out, else risk being outpaced to the top spot in the 1A South by the Burners.
4 – Kent Falcons
(5-0-0) 1A South East
Nice win for the Falcons who notched up a much more authoritative win against their local rivals, the Chargers, this time around.
Crunchtime comes this weekend as they pair up with the Pirates to duel for the conference crown on Sunday. Can the Falcons keep pace with a Pirates offence that’s been on swashbuckling form lately? Will the #1 D in Division one carry them to victory?
3 – NTU Renegades
(4-2-0) 1A Midlands
We kinda figured we’d be dropping the Renegades down the ranks this week, following a big loss to their rivals over at Uni. of Notts… But instead, while NTU loss, it was with a far more respectable 21-6 scoreline – holding Div One’s #1 offence to their lowest offensive production to date.
They’re still off the pace of the frontrunners in the Midlands, but maybe it could be third time lucky if they meet Yoonaf in the playoffs, too?
They’ve got two very winnable fixtures remaining to them that should see them through to playoffs with a strong seeding considering the mess being made in the others northern conferences lately!
2 – UEA Pirates
(6-1-0) 1A South East
The Pirates boast the #2 offence in the league… and will need it to be on top form as they face the #1 D in the tier this weekend in a crown-showdown with the Falcons.
We’re tipping the Pirates to edge the matchup by 8 points… just cos that makes things the most interesting.
1 – Nottingham Students
(6-0-0) 1A Midlands
Crown? Done. Undefeated season? Incoming – or at least we assume so.
While it was a more modest victory than expected against the Renegades Sunday, Nottingham are still our promotion-favourites. They travel to Leicester this weekend and shouldn’t have too many troubles dodging this potential banana-skin of a game.