Legendary sportswriter Wendell Barnhouse recently left the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and is now a correspondent for Big 12 Sports.com. With 30 years experience of observing the college scene, his expertise is unmatched. In the spirit of Steve Harvey's Bottom Ten, Wendell will provide us a capsule look at college football's less fortunate, counting down the Bottom 25 teams in Division I-A football.
No. 3 Idaho
Location: Moscow, Idaho.
Conference: Western Athletic.
Coach: Robb Akey, 1-11, second season.
Division I-A history: 51-90 in 12 seasons, .362 winning percentage (overall, 424-526-26 in 110 seasons, .447 winning percentage).
Last bowl season: 1998.
Best record in last five years: 4-8 in 2006.
Rank(ed) because: Akey was the Vandals' fourth coach in five seasons when he made his debut in 2007. The best record the last five years came in 2006 under Dennis Erickson who bolted for Arizona State after one season in Moscow. Since joining the WAC in 2005, Idaho is 7-28 overall.
Negative number: In 12 seasons as a Division I-A team, Idaho has had three winning seasons. The last came in 1999.
Possible victory: Idaho State, Sept. 6. If the Vandals don't get too beat up in their season opener against Arizona, they should be able to knock off an in-state Division I-AA team. If Idaho doesn't win in Week Two ... look out below.
Biggest blowout: Boise State, Nov. 15. The Broncos will prove (again) that the Spud State can only produce one winning I-A team. Boise State won last season, 58-14. Playing in Moscow might shave a few points from that margin of victory.
Is there hope?: One of the reasons Idaho won only once (and that came against Division I-AA Cal Poly) is that Akey booted 17 players off the team before the season. The house cleaning sacrificed last season in the name of discipline and academics. And in 2008, the Vandals don't face a team that had a winning record last season until Game Seven at Fresno State.
Thanks to the Helmet Project.