This group of 5 teams is really only a smidge below Mt Ida over the last 5 seasons. Ida has been to the PIT 3 times and won 88 games during that time, and these 5 have one PIT appearance and the best has 20 less wins. Therefore, I rated all of them below Mt Ida's success.
All 5 have an overall team rating about 50pts below the 7 above them, so there's some talent differences right now to overcome.
Johnson State has one PIT and 60 wins the last 5, and therefore they rank #8. Sim-coached, but with 6 scholys to fill next season, a good coach could have them up and running in short order.
Presque Isle, I ranked next due to the 69 wins and the fact that they have only finished below .500 once in the last 5. Dacj, who I expect to stay awhile due to the level of competition here, is as agressive as talented, and I believe will have them climbing the ladder through the middle of the conference very soon.
Farmington I dropped in next, due to the fact that they basically backed up and retooled completely the last 2 seasons. Coach Floyd is here (like myself), out of boredom at the DI level. He has returned to his roots and is a bulldog. He simply will not be happy with what Farmington has done the last few seasons and will have them up and running well, even if it is 2 seasons away due to the youth movement.
Becker has had minimal success the last 5 (winning 46), however if NZ hangs around, he is headed in the right direction. With 11 underclassmen he has recruited, growing up under his eye, he should be formidable as well in 2 seasons.
Last but far from least is Larry D at Salem State. He was kind enough to take over one of our most woeful programs. However, he quickly gave the green light to shoot once across mid-court to Jack Wilson, and he has become the conference wild-card. He may not beat alot of us,,, but no-one without 2 lockdown perimiter defenders will sleep well knowing they have him to play overnight. His team is also very young and if he sticks with us for awhile, he could move up quickly as well.
My overall opinion of Th' Cluster is anyone who sticks 3-4 seasons and works at it can jump up outa there and be somebody in the NAC... and in Allen DIII,,,, that somethin'
* disclaimer, like I said above, this is a little more my opinion, rather than fact, and this is an overview of the Conference Program Power Rankings
, not a ranking of the current best team.