#12 - Washington Huskies -You proud of yourself #88? You feel like a big man? Despite coming from USC where the Trojans take on all challengers, Sark has feasted on cupcakes, gaining bowl eligibility via wins over Eastern Washington & Hawaii in 2011
& San Diego State and Portland State in 2012: Photo credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE
#11 - In both 2010 and 2011, Iowa finished 7-5 utilizing a FCS win and a Mid-Major win,
In 2012, 2 cupcake wins were not enough, Iowa finished 4-8. Photo credit: Joe Robbins
#10 - Wins over Mid Tenn and S. Missou St got Purdue to a Bowl at 6-6 in 2011, In 2012, they need wins over Eastern Kentucky
Eastern Michigan and Marshall to finish 6-6. Photo credit: Pat Lovell-US PRESSWIRE
#9 - NC State pledged allegiance to the cupcake in 2011 where they went 7-5 with the help of 2 FCS wins
and a win over Central Michigan. In 2012, wins over Citadel and newly mid-major South Alabama resulted in another 7-5 season. Rob Kinnan-US PRESSWIRE
#8 - After wins over Southern & Northern Illinois kept Zook's squad bowl eligible in 2010, Zook almost saved his job
by defeating Ark st, Western Mich and South Dakota to start the season 6-0, only to finish 6-6. Photo credit: Jonathan Daniel
#7 - Urb likes cupcakes, look at OSU's schedule. His final season at UF finished 7-5 helped by wins over Miami(OH) & App State
The following year, Florida was ranked as high as #12 while they beat as many cupcakes (FAU, UAB, Furman) as BCS schools (Tenn, UK, Vandy) Photo credit: Sam Greenwood
#6 - With the exception of RGIII in 2010, Baylor's MVP has been the cupcake, in 2010 Baylor finished 7-5 with wins over Buffalo, Rice & Sam Houston
In 2012, the Bears again won 7 games with wins over SMU, ULM & of course, Sam Houston. Photo credit: Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE
#5 - In 2011 Rutgers went 8-4. They beat as many cupcakes (4, North Carolina Central, Ohio, Navy, Army) as they did FBS teams
(4, Syracuse, Pitt, USF, Cincy) but it was worth it, in the process they played 2 games at Yankee Stadium, proving their worth to the B1G. Photo credit: Andrew Burton
#4 - Since 2010 Pitt has had many coaches who all enjoyed the cupcake.
Finishing 7-5 in 2010 and 6-6 in both 2011 & 2012, Pitt has depended on a win over a cupcake and a FCS team to stay bowl eligible. Notably, Pitt lost to a FCS team in 2012, good thing they scheduled two. Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
#3 - Is UNC ever not sanctioned? If they could go to bowls, they would have to let the cupcakes drink for free at the Fountainbleau with them.
7 of their 22 wins this decade have come over cupcakes, 3 over ECU, 3 over FCS teams and 1 win over honorary FCS team the Idaho Vandals. Photo credit: Grant Halverson
#2 - Kliff might put an end to the cupcake era...can't have an 8 pack eating cupcakes, but Tuberville couldn't get enough
10 of Tommy's 19 wins at Texas Tech were against cupcakes, most egregiously in 2010, opening the season with wins over SMU & New Mexico and strangely ending the season with two cupcakes, Weber State and Houston. Photo credit: Thomas Campbell-US PRESSWIRE
#1 - Klanga Klanga, the sound of the only team in football to beat 4 cupcakes a year EVERY year this decade so far. In 2010, Miss St was 4-5 minus wins over Memphis, Alcorn St, Houston and UAB, they finished the season ranked #15
In 2011, the Bulldogs beat only 2 FBS teams, 5 win Kentucky and 2 win Ole Miss. They beat 1 team with a winning record, 8-5 LaTech. Their other 3 victories were over 3 teams that had 10 wins combined (Memphis, UAB, UT-Martin). In 2012, Miss St again failed to best a FBS team with a winning record, beating 2 win Kentucky, 3 win Auburn, 4 win Arkansas and 5 win Tennessee. Wins over Jackson St, Troy, South Alabama and Mid Tenn propelled Miss St to a 7-0 start and a #13 ranking, before finishing the season 1-4. Photo credit: Stacy Revere
The SEC won't play anyone, despite LSU, Alabama and to a lesser extent Georgia playing and winning big non-conference games, there is still a feeling that the SEC is overly dependent on a 8 home game cupcake heavy schedule. In most cases, a difficult conference schedule is the justification given for the weak non-conference slates.
The B1G has vowed not to schedule FCS games. Bob Stoops doesn't mind playing cupcakes (2 a year since 2010), he just doesn't want any cupcakes in his Orange Bowl. With larger conferences, and increased value of TV money, cupcake games could soon be a thing of the past. But for now the cupcake era lives on.
Cupcake (kup'kak) - (n.) A FCS team, or a Mid-Major FBS team that plays against a FBS team from a major conference (ACC, B1G, Big 12, PAC 12, SEC & Big East, (yes even them)).
This list looked at teams who were bowl eligible, via winning 6 or more games, but with 5 or less wins over teams from a major conference.
In 2010 8 of these teams played in Bowl Games thanks to wins over cupcakes, finishing 7-1 in their bowls. Temple and Western Michigan were bowl eligible but not invited to a game.
In 2011 10 of these teams played in Bowl Games thanks to wins over cupcakes, finishing 6-4 in their bowls. Western Kentucky and Ball State were eligible but not invited to a game.
In 2012, 7 of these teams played in Bowl Games thanks to wins over cupcakes, finishing 2-5 in their bowls. Louisiana Tech and Middle Tennessee were eligible but did not play in a Bowl.