The Spread, Week 6: The Frauds

This year for my annual soul-crushing Fraud List, I’ve enlisted the help of this handy page from the folks at Using their projections in conjunction with my own observations from past years, I hope to produce the most accurate group of potential fraud teams yet.

A “Fraud Team” is a team that reaches the sixth week of the season undefeated and then finishes the year with at least five losses. There are usually 2 or 3 such teams each season. This list projects the five most likely candidates for 2013.

1. Michigan

It’s a tight race between two teams from the Big Ten Legends division, but the Wolverines get the nod (or whatever the opposite of a nod is) for their uncanny resemblance to last year’s WVU team. While they’ve continued to win, their margin of victory has gone down each week, regardless of opponent quality. The last thing we saw Michigan do was almost lose to UConn, who just fired their coach. Let that sink in.

2. Northwestern

The Wildcats’ first three FBS opponents have won a total of three games so far. Their remaining eight have lost a total of seven. It’s the biggest disparity among remaining undefeated teams and it could bring the Nerds’ season crashing down.


The Bruins have a good win over Nebraska, but that’s probably not going to help them with the less defensively-challenged Stanford and Oregon. Resurgent Washington and Arizona State will pose problems heading into the rivalry game with a suddenly-unpredictable USC team.

4. Missouri

The Tigers have had a nice start to the season following last year’s rocky initiation into the SEC, but now have to navigate a conference slate that includes Georgia, Florida and South Carolina in consecutive weeks and a season-ender against Texas A&M.

5. Houston

Two AAC teams–Louisville and Houston–are currently undefeated and something’s going to have to give. The conference isn’t exactly full of world-beaters, but expect the Cougs to end up with three or four losses this year.

Keep An Eye On: Maryland, Texas Tech, Washington.

The next three teams on the list, these unbeatens are probably good enough to stay under four losses, but any unforeseen negative development could tip things out of their favor.


  1. “We’re #1!” – Michigan fans…

    “OH HEY WAIT!” — Michigan fans, 5 seconds later…

    “He’s right.” — Michigan fans, 10 seconds later, head bowed dejectedly, shoulders slumped, kicking stones out of his way, hands in pockets.


  1. […] bye week is here, so what better time to check in on those teams from the Fraud List? Two teams are being dropped from list, as they appear to have survived long enough to avoid losing […]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: