Another static week in the top 10, with a couple of Big Ten teams easing up a spot but no other movement as upset bids falls just short across the board. Escapes from Oregon and TCU considerably narrow gaps between the top four: Oregon is now about 0.3 points clear of Auburn, and while the BlogPoll does stick with TCU at No. 3 the gap has gone from 1.3 points to 0.3. Boise's got a couple opportunities against Fresno State and Nevada to slide by the Horned Frogs. The Horned Frogs are basically done playing opponents with a pulse.
Farther down we do get some significant movement thanks to losses, with Iowa, Arizona, and Mississippi State all falling after losses. The week's big loser is Utah, which took a hammering from Notre Dame and went from No. 15 to out of the poll. Everyone else moves up ladder style, but you can welcome Miami and Florida State back to the bottom of the poll. Friends forever.
Justify Your Existence
After a single week where the top four here was the top four there we're back to being crossly different: the other polls slide Boise State back in front of TCU after the Horned Frogs' very bad weekend (sort of). Is this because blog folk were more likely to know that San Diego State's 35 points were cosmetic? Maybe. That sounds good, let's go with it. It's really close in both other polls, FWIW.
Other differences are really minor this week, unfortunately. Sometimes there's not much opportunity for the poll to take a different stance because to do so would be silly. All difference are bloggers being haterz since single-spot differences don't register. BlogPoll hates:
- No. 9 Ohio State (8 AP, 7 Coaches)
- No. 12 Alabama (10 AP)
- No. 16 Virginia Tech (14 AP)
- No. 24 Miami (21 Coaches)
- Unranked Utah (25 AP, 24 Coaches)
Feel free to mentally insert the image macro of your choice here.
Wack Ballot Watchdog
- From Old Virginia has Wisconsin No. 16, five spots lower than the next most unimpressed voter. The Badgers are 7 spots behind an OSU team that they beat handily; OSU has not played the team (MSU) that beat Wisconsin.
- Block U has a number of odd votes: Syracuse No. 18 when the Orange have one other vote at 25, Northern Illinois at 15, four spots higher than even our Mr. Bold—awarded almost entirely because he's in the tank for mid-majors.
- In The Bleachers ranks Michigan No. 20, four spots higher than the next most impressed voter. Michigan only gets three other votes.
- Illinois blog Hail to the Orange does not believe in the Hat: LSU is No. 15, four slots lower than the NMUV.
- Eagle in Atlanta has FSU No. 14, four slots higher than the NMIV.
Now on to the extracurriculars. First up are the teams which spur the most and least disagreement between voters as measured by standard deviation. Note that the standard deviation charts halt at #25 when looking for the lowest, otherwise teams that everyone agreed were terrible (say, Eastern Michigan) would all be at the top.
|2||Nevada Wolf Pack||7.89||3.10|
|4||Virginia Tech Hokies||9.59||2.74|
Utah cedes its crown here by virtue of losing by a lot to Notre Dame and getting booted, leaving USC your new champion because they win or lose by last second field goals a lot. Also it's possible some voters aren't voting for them because of the sanctions, which they're not supposed to do but there are 90 of them and they are bloggers and you can only herd cats so well.
First up are "Mr. Bold" and "Mr. 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.
|1||The Purple Wimple||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||2.74|
|2||Boys of Old Florida||Florida Gators||ballot||2.56|
|3||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||2.21|
|4||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||2.06|
|5||The Crimson Quarry||Indiana Hoosiers||ballot||1.98|
Obvious mid-major boosterism takes the win here, as The Purple Wimple has TCU and Boise 1-2 with Oregon seventh(!). Farther down the poll Nevada, Air Force, and Northern Illinois are 17 through 19, with only one of those teams anywhere near that spot in the poll at large. His vote for Air Force is the only one in the entire poll. Other than the insane punishment for a team with one close call on the year nothing looks completely baats aside from dropping Iowa, Mississippi State, and Arizona in favor of teams like NIU and Temple.
Mr. Numb Existence
|1||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||0.84|
|2||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||0.89|
|3||The Key Play||Virginia Tech Hokies||ballot||0.92|
|5||Rakes of Mallow||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||1.03|
A fourth victory here for the Baltimore Sports Report, which also likes fiber, CSPAN, and decaf coffee. Quest for the Perfect Ballot ends at No. 3, where Boise swaps with TCU on the BSR ballot.
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.
|1||Mountain West Connection||Utah Utes||ballot||2.79|
|2||The Purple Wimple||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||2.43|
|3||Corn Nation||Nebraska Cornhuskers||ballot||2.34|
|4||Eleven Warriors||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||1.91|
|5||The Owl's Nest||Temple Owls||ballot||1.63|
I was beginning to worry about the ol' CK Award after it took impertinence from Utah all year without so much as slowing the Utes down against various Mountain West tomato cans, but it finally said "enough" against Air Force and saw the Falcons to a solid cover. Warning ignored. The next week Utah shows up at the top and TCU destroys them 47-7. That was not so much a warning as long-delayed cosmic justice. The next week Utah shows up at the top, walks into Notre Dame Stadium a touchdown favorite, and leaves with three points and a four-score loss. The CK Award, AKA the Did Utah Cover Award, is now 6-4 on the year and has comprehensively dismantled the idea Utah is a top 25 team…
Except in the mind of the Mountain West Connection, which still over-ranks Utah by about three spots by including them at all at No. 22 and just won't take the hint. Utah takes on a San Diego State team that hung considerably tougher against TCU than they did; the Aztecs are three point favorites and can finally put someone else on the hotseat if they live up to that.
|1||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||-10.21|
|2||The Only Colors||Michigan St. Spartans||ballot||-0.51|
|3||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||-0.11|
|4||Boys of Old Florida||Florida Gators||ballot||-0.04|
|5||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||0.00|
I still think we're having some problems here with properly identifying everything that should go in this category but when your team is No. 15 in the poll at large and you don't even rank them you run away with this category and should get yourself some valium.
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.
|1||The Purple Wimple||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||100|
|2||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||86|
|3||Mountain West Connection||Utah Utes||ballot||86|
|4||Hey Jenny Slater||Georgia Bulldogs||ballot||80|
|5||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||78|
Victory here for that same guy for booting Iowa, Mississippi State, previously hideously over-rated Utah, and Arizona out of his poll. Also Air Force moves up six for undisclosed reasons. I find these Mountain West voters a tad annoying this year.
|1||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||52|
|2||Voodoo Five||South Florida Bulls||ballot||56|
|3||Tom Fornelli||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||58|
|4||Rakes of Mallow||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||60|
|5||The Crimson Quarry||Indiana Hoosiers||ballot||60|
The BSR also wins here but in this case it's more about skepticism being correct that anything else. Utah, Arizona, and Iowa were all low already so the BSR moves them less. This equals a win despite moving stuff around somewhat liberally near the top.