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Stuck in the middle with you...

Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

With the college football season just a few weeks away, SBN's Bill Connelly has finished his excellent team-by-team preview series of every dang team in FBS.  Naturally, that means it's time to rank them all, too.  So where does Iowa fit into the picture?

Good ol' number... 47.  That's out of 128 total teams, but if you're the coach of a power conference team below, oh, #70 or so... well, I'm just saying it might be a good idea to update the ol' resume.  Just a thought.  Anyway, Iowa.  We fit in Tier 4: A couple will play at a top-25 level.  Hey, that could be us!  Maybe.  Hopefully? Iowa has some familiar company in that tier -- Pitt (36), Minnesota (39), and Maryland (49), as a well as a few down-on-their-luck powerhouses, like Florida (37) and Texas (38).

In fact, looking at Iowa's entire schedule (minus Illinois State, who is not ranked because they're an FCS school)...

90 Iowa State
36 Pitt
122 North Texas
79 Illinois
21 Wisconsin
57 Northwestern
49 Maryland
75 Indiana
39 Minnesota
83 Purdue
28 Nebraska

Assuming Iowa simply beat the teams ranked lower than them and lost to the teams ranked above them, that would give them a record of 8-4 (Illinois State, though not officially ranked here, would not be ranked higher than Iowa), with losses to Pitt, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Nebraska.  That would be pretty.... meh?  Let's go with "meh."  Iowa would avoid any hideous losses if they did that, but the most exciting win would be... Maryland?  Northwestern?  Iowa State (for rivalry purposes)?

Of course, things won't play out exactly as these rankings suggest -- some teams will be better than this ranking indicates, while some will be worse than their rankings.  But it's yet another way to contextualize the teams on Iowa's schedule this year and figure out where Iowa sits entering the year.