By Nathan Ham
For the first time in program history, Appalachian State finished a season ranked in the top 25 in both the Associated Press Poll and the Amway Coaches Poll. The Mountaineers finished the year 18th in the Coaches Poll and 19th in the AP Poll. The polls were released this morning following last night’s national championship game that saw LSU defeat Clemson 42-25.
The Mountaineers completed the 2019 season with a 13-1 record that included the team’s fifth bowl game victory in as many tries and the best record of any Group of Five conference team. This is also the first time a Sun Belt team has finished the season ranked in one of the two polls. The Mountaineers just missed that record after the 2018 season, finishing with the 26th most votes in the AP Poll.
App State became just the fifth program in major college football history to send its fifth-year seniors out with five bowl wins and four conference titles, joining Nebraska (1969-73), Alabama (1975-79), Florida State (1991-95) and Marshall (1998-2002). The 54-12 overall record accomplished in the last five seasons is the fifth-best mark in the country during that span, trailing just Clemson, Alabama, Ohio State and Oklahoma.
Statewide, the Mountaineers are the only FBS team to finish the season ranked in a poll and the only FBS team to reach double-digit wins this season.
Looking at the statistics, the Mountaineers finished the 2019 season with the ninth-best scoring offense in the nation at 38.8 points per game and the 21st-ranked scoring defense, giving up just 20 PPG.
For the Record
App State set numerous gridiron records this year for a Sun Belt Conference team. Those records include:
- Start a season with a 7-0 record
- Beat two Power Five teams in one season
- Receive a College Football Playoff in-season ranking
- Win 11 games in a regular season
- Win more than 11 games in a full season
- Be ranked in the Top 25 on multiple occasions
- Win a game as a Top 25 team
- Be ranked in the Top 25 in consecutive weeks
- Be ranked in the Top 20
- Finish a season with a 6-0 road record
- End a season with a Top 25 ranking