Week 3 of the BAFA league season threw up some surprises in the MEC, while the other divisions all started to take shape! Here’s our top 10 at the half-way point!
The Smoke hold on to the top spot, and don’t look to be moving any time soon. With another 2 comprehensive wins, and a successful trip to Big Bowl, the Smoke seem primed for life in the Premier Division already. An arm injury to QB Charlie Williams will cause them some concern, but there’s too much talent on this team for anyone to be challenging them at this time.
Carnegie have been the class of the HNC so far, and might just be the best team in Division One North. After the ding-dong battles in the MEC, Carnegie are currently the #1 seed, and will not be tested as they can look towards the playoffs already. Carnegie also seem to be getting better, which is bad news for the other teams in Division One.
We expected the Trojans to be frisky this year, but they’ve arguably been the biggest success story in Division One. Any other season, you’d have likely seen them higher in our power rankings, but they’ll likely be the #2 seed in the South behind the London Smoke. They only had one bout in game-week 3 – they won 90-0 over the Hammerheads. Scary stuff.
The Honey Badgers don’t move, which seems a little harsh given their victory over the Revolution. The Honey Badgers flipped the script to seize the initiative in the MEC. A 2 point win over the weakened Revolution is a season defining moment for the Nottingham side, but losing to the Wigan Bandits wasn’t in the plan. Still, the Badgers are in a strong position, and have been one of the most well rounded units in Division One North. Their meme game is pretty great too.
The Revolution tumble to 5 after dropping their first game of the season to the Honey Badgers. Some might find this a little unjust given the Rev were down their starting QB and blitzer. Any team would struggle without their top signal caller, but it highlights that the Revolution might not be able to keep pace with the likes of the Honey Badgers if they’re not getting stellar play from their quarterback. Thankfully, Lewis Jaundrell has been lights out so far, and the Revolution will need to hope he continues his fine season if they’re to hold off the recent challenge to their premier division credentials…
The Titans White went 2-0 in one of the more routine game-days they’ll have all season as they pitched two shut-outs against the Coventry Cougars and the Rugby Raccoons. The Titans’ season will basically come down to their next game-day as they face the Coventry Panthers and Bedford Blackhawks – both of whom are 5-1 and breathing down the Titans’ neck.
The Knights went 2-0 in week 3, but it was the action elsewhere that solidifies their place at #7 in our rankings. With the Honey Badgers dropping a game unexpectedly, the Knights might smell blood in the water. While we’re fans of this side, this might be the last time we see the Knights in our power rankings. The Calderdale outfit have a rough round of fixtures next as they square off against the top two teams from the MEC West – the Wigan Bandits and Warrington Revolution. They also take on the Oldham Owls, who stylistically match up very well against the Knights. If they go 3-0, they could catch the Honey Badgers. One more loss would likely end their challenge.
On the topic of the Wigan Bandits, we were very, very tempted to include them this week, but with them effectively sitting #3/4 from the MEC, and being the newer side, we took the Knights ahead of them. That could all change after this weekend though.
The Coventry Panthers move down slightly in our power rankings, thanks in large to their slightly flat win over the Leicester Huntsmen. The Panthers are a game behind the Titans White, and will play them and the Bedford Blackhawks at the next game-day. 2-0 and they’re a potential promotion candidate. 1-1 and they’re going to perhaps be on the outside of the championship bracket, it’s that tight in the Division One South.
The Reapers make their debut in our power rankings after a strong first three weeks in the league. At 4-1-1, they’re the team closest to the London Smoke, and could be making a move towards the Premier Division if they keep this pace up. The blemishes on their record are a draw against the Buckinghamshire Wolves and a heavy loss to the London Smoke, so there’s no real alarm bells ringing; their win over the Reading Knights this past game-day has us feeling good about their chances to keep a firm hold on the second spot in the South East division.
The Colts round off our power rankings after snatching the #2 spot in the HNC and a shot at a premier division spot for next year, for now. They got revenge over the Midlothian Sabres, while also winning in dramatic fashion over the Paisley Spartans. They’re sitting pretty at 3-1, but their season is about to become difficult quite significantly. After taking on the Killer Bees and Silvercats this weekend, the Colts will take on Carnegie twice to finish the season. The Colts could fall off, but they’re the second strongest side we’ve seen from the HNC so far. Will they look this good at the end of the year? We’re doubtful, but still have to respect what we’ve seen so far.