Sunday, September 12, 2010

blogpoll ballot, week 2: the "we never have to hear about W&M again" edition

This generally is the toughest ballot of the whole season to fill out. Some teams have accomplished Worthwhile Things and others have just been playing out the string for a bit until they get to the real competition. Preconceived notions have to play a big role, but by this time there are quality resumes which can't be ignored. In two weeks, preconceived notions will largely disappear, but for now, in some cases that's all we have unless you think it's a good idea to reward teams for stomping a pair of I-AA opponents. (Helpful hint: it's not.)

Fortunately, there are a couple teams that make it really, really easy. Guess who's dropping off the ballot this week?

The mash-up of Preconceived Notions and Strict Resume Voting that you see here means a few weird things:

- I have little doubt, for example, that Oregon State will eventually return to the ballot. But this isn't supposed to be predictive. It's reactive. So there are teams like Oregon State and UNC that look like they're being punished for doing nothing (except for a loss to a ranked team, the sort of thing that wouldn't hurt too bad later on) and in a way, they are.

- You see teams like Clemson and Boston College sliding down the rankings - those are actually teams that have done little but are benefitting from their earlier ranking. Are you technically supposed to do that? Not really, but otherwise you're stuck comparing teams like Eastern Washington to McNeese State and seeing whether a 49-28 whupping of one is better than a 50-6 whupping of the other, and - really now, would you take a ballot seriously that ranked Nevada in the top five? because that's what that leads to. There are some strict "resume voters" that vote in this poll, but they are weird.

- I am not allowed to vote for James Madison. Can't even write them in. This makes me a sad panda.

- Comments highly encouraged on this one. Highly.

- Edit: Second edition - Boise State gets somewhat less harsh treatment. Realistically they should still have been in front of teams like Auburn and Clemson, and now they are. They still got a first-place vote in the AP poll, however, and that is stupid. Pete DiPrimio of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, you are stupid this week.


fridge said...

Happy to give an opinion. Guess the biggest thing I see is TCU vs. Boise. I get punishing the smurfs, but this seems a bit much... can this team, which with the exception of a cb (admittedly a very good one) is the same as it was a year ago, be 17 spots worse than the team they beat in their bowl game? Doesn't seem likely.

I have south carolina and michigan a little lower than this, but the argument's easy enough to make.

It's funny, I have arkansas in almost the same spot you have auburn, and neither of us have the other team ranked at all... but the only argument I can make is pure preconception.

Like the air force love, sad neither "real" poll gave them any appreciation.

The only ACC team I have ranked right now is Miami, guess the pathetic-fest this weekend left me with a bad taste in my mouth... I did have Clemson and UNC at 26/27.

And then there's USC. I just completely dumped them. As much as I'd love to leave them ranked really high and enjoy the almost-coulda-shoulda-been win, between last night and hawaii I just don't see them belonging on a poll sheet. It'd be different if they were 13-1 last year, but at this point all they've really got going for them is their name, uniform, and fight song.

Brendan said...

I almost dumped USC. Take away the USC name and give a random team their resume and are they ranked? Hell no. But then I noticed I had Florida State still in there, which wasn't a good idea, so USC wormed back in.

As far as Boise, 20 is probably a little harsh and I'll likely bump them north a little. But I still can't justify top ten - I don't take into account last year's results and if you were to go strictly on resume and rank all 120 teams based on that, Boise has nothing but a narrow win over one of the "worst teams." I don't doubt they'll climb the rankings as the season goes on but there's no justification for leaving them in the top five like the AP poll did.