College football BlogPoll rankings: Notre Dame keeps lead on Alabama, Nebraska free-fallin'

Matt Cashore-US PRESSWIRE

Notre Dame's 12-0 record is significantly more impressive to BlogPoll voters than Alabama's SEC title. And Nebraska's evisceration at Wisconsin's hands is impressing no one.

Not even winning the nation's best conference could help Alabama erase Notre Dame's BlogPoll lead. But while the Irish stay No. 1 for the fourth straight week heading into bowl season, Alabama is less than a point per ballot behind at No. 2.

The points-per-ballot average of the BlogPoll is supposed to give a better indicator of how close teams actually are, and it does that well this week. After Notre Dame finished its undefeated season and Alabama waxed Auburn, the Irish were nearly 1.5 points per ballot ahead of the Tide; after Alabama added a win over Georgia to its C.V., the Tide sit exactly .70 points behind their undefeated BCS National Championship foes.

Elsewhere, the top three remains unchanged, with Oregon checking in at No. 3, but No. 4 Florida is up one spot and less than a quarter-point behind the Ducks. Kansas State is a near-unanimous No. 5, and Georgia slides to No. 6 after falling to 'Bama. Stanford moves up a spot with its Pac-12 title in hand, helping displace Ohio State, down to No. 8 despite receiving two first-place votes. And LSU and Texas A&M finish the pre-bowl season No. 9 and No. 10, giving the SEC five top-10 teams.

The biggest fall of the week belongs to Nebraska, routed in the Big Ten Championship Game and down eight spots to No. 22 as a result. Kent State nearly matched the Huskers' plummet, dropping seven spots to No. 25. Louisville, which earned the Big East's BCS berth by scraping by Rutgers, is the week's biggest riser, vaulting seven places to No. 23.

SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 College Football Rankings

Results for Week 14

# School Points/blog SD Delta
1 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (42) 24.59 0.88 --
2 Alabama Crimson Tide (11) 23.89 0.82 --
3 Oregon Ducks 21.43 1.88 --
4 Florida Gators (1) 21.20 1.95 Arrow_up 1
5 Kansas St. Wildcats 20.00 1.50 Arrow_up 2
6 Georgia Bulldogs 19.48 2.45 Arrow_down -2
7 Stanford Cardinal 18.38 2.27 Arrow_up 1
8 Ohio St. Buckeyes (2) 18.05 7.51 Arrow_down -2
9 LSU Tigers 17.05 2.14 --
10 Texas A&M Aggies 16.88 2.90 --
11 South Carolina Gamecocks 14.71 1.82 --
12 Oklahoma Sooners 14.36 2.43 --
13 Florida St. Seminoles 13.43 2.14 --
14 Clemson Tigers 11.82 1.39 Arrow_up 1
15 Oregon St. Beavers 9.82 3.19 Arrow_up 1
16 Northern Illinois Huskies 9.68 3.48 Arrow_up 3
17 UCLA Bruins 7.02 2.95 --
18 Utah State Aggies 6.66 3.10 Arrow_up 2
19 Boise St. Broncos 5.09 4.26 Arrow_up 4
20 Louisville Cardinals 4.84 3.31 Arrow_up 7
21 Northwestern Wildcats 4.25 3.42 --
22 Nebraska Cornhuskers 4.00 3.82 Arrow_down -8
23 Michigan Wolverines 3.70 3.07 Arrow_down -1
24 San Jose St. Spartans 3.61 3.11 Arrow_up 2
25 Kent St. Golden Flashes 2.84 3.23 Arrow_down -7
Others Receiving Votes: Wisconsin Badgers | Texas Longhorns | Vanderbilt Commodores | Penn St. Nittany Lions | Baylor Bears | Fresno St. Bulldogs | Oklahoma St. Cowboys | Ball St. Cardinals | Arkansas St. Red Wolves | Cincinnati Bearcats | Rutgers Scarlet Knights | San Diego St. Aztecs | Mississippi St. Bulldogs | Toledo Rockets | Arizona St. Sun Devils | TCU Horned Frogs | North Carolina Tar Heels | USC Trojans | Tulsa Golden Hurricane | Louisiana Tech Bulldogs | Arizona Wildcats | Central Florida Knights | West Virginia Mountaineers
Updated: Dec 4, 2012 9:30 AM EST

Total Ballots: 56 | Votes by team| Ballots by voter

Wack Ballot Watchdog

The holiday season is almost upon us, and I don't feel very Grinch-like, so I will only note two things here. First, Ohio State is still not part of every ballot (the Buckeyes are on 49 of 56), and ranking it No. 19, as Frogs O' War does ... hey, wait, that's predicated on Ohio State's best win to date getting mutilated by Wisconsin, isn't it? Never mind.

Second, BlogPoll voters are supposed to rank the best 25 teams in college football in order. That's the entire ethos of this enterprise, and a mission statement that voters attempt to fulfill in whatever manner they see fit. With Notre Dame getting 42 first-place votes to Alabama's 11, I look forward to seeing a bunch of writing on all of our voters' sites about how Notre Dame is actually the BCS National Championship Game favorite.

Now on to the extracurriculars. First up are the teams that spur the most disagreement between voters as measured by standard deviation. Note that the standard deviation charts halt at No. 25 when looking for the lowest, otherwise teams that everyone agreed were terrible (say, Iowa) would all be at the top.

# School Points/blog SD
1 Ohio St. Buckeyes (2) 18.05 7.51
2 Boise St. Broncos 5.09 4.26
3 Nebraska Cornhuskers 4.00 3.82
4 Northern Illinois Huskies 9.68 3.48
5 Northwestern Wildcats 4.25 3.42

As usual, being left off a bunch of ballots helps here: Ohio State's seven non-votes have it comfortably ahead here, while Boise State's 15 non-votes are more than enough to balance its 24 votes for spots from No. 16 to No. 19. And if you can't see why Nebraska and Northern Illinois might inspire difference of opinion ... do you actually watch college football?

Ballot Math

First up are The Chip Kelly Award for Boldness and Jim Tressel's Numb Existence. The former goes to the voter with the ballot most divergent from the poll at large. The number you see is the average difference between a person's opinion of a team and the poll's opinion.

# Blog Team Ballot Avg Error
1 Lake The Posts Northwestern Wildcats ballot 2.65
2 Hammer & Rails Purdue Boilermakers ballot 2.55
3 From Old Virginia Virginia Cavaliers ballot 2.51
4 Crimson and Cream Machine Oklahoma Sooners ballot 2.49
5 DanShanoff.com Florida Gators ballot 2.34

Lake The Posts has Alabama No. 3, but then, nine other voters do. It has Florida State No. 8, the 'Noles' second-highest ranking. But its jumble in the teens (No. 13 Stanford, No. 14 Texas A&M, No. 15 Louisville, No. 16 Northern Illinois, No. 17 Nebraska, No. 18 Michigan) is more than enough to pip Hammer & Rails here.

# Blog Team Ballot Avg Error
1 Land-Grant Holy Land Ohio St. Buckeyes ballot 1.34
2 Mountain West Connection Utah Utes ballot 1.38
3 Voodoo Five South Florida Bulls ballot 1.49
4 Smoking Musket West Virginia Mountaineers ballot 1.55
5 Card Chronicle Louisville Cardinals ballot 1.58

It must be nice for Ohio State fans to not have to worry about a bowl game, because then they can finally nail down awards named for Jim Tressel, which they can then sell for e-tattoos. In seriousness, this is really an impressive bit of work, considering that L-GHL also ranked Ohio State No. 1.

Next we have the Coulter/Kos Award and the Straight Bangin' Award, which are again different sides of the same coin. The CKA and SBA go to the blogs with the highest and lowest bias rating, respectively. Bias rating is calculated by subtracting the blogger's vote for his own team from the poll-wide average. A high number indicates you are shameless homer. A low number indicates that you suffer from an abusive relationship with your football team.

# Blog Team Ballot Bias
1 Land-Grant Holy Land Ohio St. Buckeyes ballot 6.95
2 Alligator Army Florida Gators ballot 3.80
3 Dawg Sports Georgia Bulldogs ballot 3.52
4 Smoking Musket West Virginia Mountaineers ballot 2.95
5 DanShanoff.com Florida Gators ballot 2.80

That No. 1 vote for the Buckeyes wins L-GHL this category, too, and by a very healthy margin over the ballot of the only person who has Florida No. 1. (That's me, by the by.) The rankings here make sense for Dawg Sports (Georgia at No. 3, where just five other voters had it) and Shanoff (Florida at No. 2), but Smoking Musket giving West Virginia literally its only vote, at No. 23, is the funniest way a team has broken into the CKA top five this year.

# Blog Team Ballot Bias
1 Corn Nation Nebraska Cornhuskers ballot -2.00
2 Crimson and Cream Machine Oklahoma Sooners ballot -0.36
3 BCS Guru USC Trojans ballot -0.13
4 The Crimson Quarry Indiana Hoosiers ballot 0.00
5 From Old Virginia Virginia Cavaliers ballot 0.00

Corn Nation having Nebraska at No. 24 was enough. Those 0.00 ratings making the tally for voters whose teams didn't even get votes means just three voters underrated their own teams this week. Good show, fans!

Swing is the total change in each ballot from last week to this week (obviously voters who didn't submit a ballot last week are not included). A high number means you are easily distracted by shiny things. A low number means that you're damn sure you're right no matter what reality says.

# Blog Team Ballot Swing
1 Team Speed Kills South Carolina Gamecocks ballot 86
2 Hammer & Rails Purdue Boilermakers ballot 82
3 Lake The Posts Northwestern Wildcats ballot 72
4 Block U Utah Utes ballot 70
5 From Old Virginia Virginia Cavaliers ballot 70

Team Speed Kills dropped four teams from its top 25 and moved three others six spaces each at least. (Also interesting: an SEC blog with a Gamecocks bias has four top-six SEC teams, but puts Stanford at No. 4, and keeps South Carolina out of the top 10 at No. 11.)

# Blog Team Ballot Swing
1 Hustle Belt Ball St. Cardinals ballot 16
2 BCS Guru USC Trojans ballot 28
3 Voodoo Five South Florida Bulls ballot 36
4 The Crimson Quarry Indiana Hoosiers ballot 36
5 Maize n Brew Michigan Wolverines ballot 40

Hustle Belt did something pretty impressive: it moved Georgia down four spots and moved four teams up one after the Bulldogs' SEC title game loss, and it kept Northern Illinois and Kent State -- two teams that, as SB Nation's MAC blog, it knows well -- right where they were entering last week. Belief is a good way to end up in the teens in Swing.

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