This was the week when vast disagreements stopped happening. It was hard to pick out very weird votes except in certain 'look at me' cases. The bit where we Justify Our Existence is now hanging its hat on the shaky placement of Boise above Auburn in the other polls, and even the Mr. Bold winner's ballot doesn't look totally insane.
It's the new normal. Easy wins for the top two and huge losses for surprise interlopers Missouri and Michigan State returning the top ten to something resembling sense. Oregon is No. 1 by a considerable margin; Auburn has separated itself from Boise State and TCU by a point and a half per ballot, and then there's a huge dropoff after them.
Your big dropper this week outside of the Missouri-MSU duo is Florida State, which suffered a crushing last-second loss to NC State on Thursday. Nebraska is your big winner, with Iowa's thumping win over MSU doing far more to hurt the Spartans than help the Hawkeyes.
Justify Your Existence
As we go deeper into the season a lot of previous disagreements get resolved by events on the field and this section gets less thrilling.
But in any case, BlogPoll hates:
- No. 3 Boise State (2 AP, 2 Coaches)
- No. 11 Ohio State (8 AP, 8 Coaches)
- No. 19 Arkansas (17 AP)
- No. 22 Virginia Tech (20 AP, 20 Coaches)
- No. 2 Auburn (3 AP, 3 Coaches)
- No. 8 Nebraska (10 Coaches)
- No. 9 Oklahoma (11 AP)
- No. 10 Stanford (12 Coaches)
Both major polls have Boise and Auburn neck and neck and will probably hand over No. 2 in two weeks if the Tigers take care of a mediocre Georgia team, and will definitely do so if the win the Iron Bowl. By that time BlogPoll folks might have AU No. 1; here they're raking in about a third of the first place votes. They're getting under ten percent of the No. 1s in the other two polls.
The other major disagreement is skepticism about Ohio State around these parts. Since OSU's best win to date is over either Miami or Illinois, I can understand that.
Wack Ballot Watchdog
Kind of a light week, with most of the lol whut votes coming on a single ballot, but some of those are doozies…
- Someone voted for 2-6 Tennessee and still has cratering Michigan No. 16, in front of Ohio State. I'm shocked this ballot didn't even crack the top five in Mr. Bold.
- Block U has 4-4 Arizona State No. 15, and that doesn't appear to be an error since Arizona is No. 11.
- Conquest Chronicles votes for Arkansas State instead of Arkansas. This is why you post your ballots grumble grumble.
- Braves and Birds has Arkansas No. 10, three spots higher than the next most optimistic voter.
- Hog DB and From Old Virginia have Boise State No. 11, three spots lower than the next most pessimistic voters.
- Burnt Orange Nation files a protest vote for I-AA Dixie State, which isn't even supposed to be in the database, at No. 25.
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.
Mostly untested Utah retains the top spot here, which is unusual for a team in the top six. They'll resolve questions one way or the other this weekend against TCU, paving the way for someone else to take the crown.
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||TomahawkNation||Florida St. Seminoles||ballot||3.01|
|2||Black Heart Gold Pants||Iowa Hawkeyes||ballot||2.97|
|3||Boys of Old Florida||Florida Gators||ballot||2.93|
|4||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||2.80|
|5||SB Nation Atlanta||Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets||ballot||2.70|
Tomahawk Nation takes the prize for the weirdest ballot based largely on mid-major skepticism and Hat Faith. Boise and TCU find themselves behind Alabama and LSU(!). Utah is 25th, and Nevada does not appear. UCF does, at No. 24, though.
Mr. Numb Existence
|1||The Owl's Nest||Temple Owls||ballot||0.98|
|2||OverThePylon||Ball St. Cardinals||ballot||1.04|
|3||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||1.05|
|4||Eleven Warriors||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||1.21|
|5||Tom Fornelli||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||1.27|
After a few weeks spent topping the Mr. Stubborn (least ballot change) charts, The Owl's Nest discards his previous notions and ends up at the top of the chart dedicated to the most accurate (or boring, depending on your point of view) ballot. He missed last week so there aren't any deltas, unfortunately, to show where the major changes came. The Quest For The Perfect Ballot ends before it can start: TON has Auburn on top.
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.
The CK Award
|1||Mountain West Connection||Utah Utes||ballot||2.39|
|2||Eleven Warriors||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||1.59|
|3||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||0.57|
|4||TomahawkNation||Florida St. Seminoles||ballot||0.31|
|5||Rakes of Mallow||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||0.00|
Utah's brutal campaign of intimidation against the poor, innocent biased pundits of the world continues without relenting. Except… what's this? A failure to cover? Yes, it's true: Air Force hung tight against the Utes, losing 28-23 and covering a seven point spread. The CK Award has scratched its way back to 4-4 and now looms over Utah as they prepare to take on TCU in a matchup of top ten teams. TCU is favored by 4.5.
The Straight Bangin' Award
|1||Corn Nation||Nebraska Cornhuskers||ballot||-1.27|
|2||Black Heart Gold Pants||Iowa Hawkeyes||ballot||-1.14|
|3||SpartyMSU||Michigan St. Spartans||ballot||-0.91|
|4||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||-0.67|
|5||The Purple Wimple||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||-0.35|
By all rights that one MSU voter in here should have a –6 or so after a truly crushing loss against Iowa—this is the way of things—but I guess when you've still got a shot at the Rose Bowl at 8-1 and are facing down a gauntlet of Minnesota, Bye, Purdue, and Penn State it's hard to muster the proper level of depression. So SpartyMSU comes in third, leaving the prize to Corn Nation and its extremely slight underrating of the Huskers.
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||92|
|2||The Key Play||Virginia Tech Hokies||ballot||88|
|3||TomahawkNation||Florida St. Seminoles||ballot||88|
|4||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||86|
|5||SB Nation Atlanta||Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets||ballot||82|
The Purple Wimple wins again but only for the same reason it won last week: they mistakenly put Florida where they meant Florida State. Since that's repairing a ballot error already awarded, this week the winners are the blogs tied at second: The Key Play and Tomahawk Nation. TN is up here because of undue faith in the ACC—Miami and Clemson both evaporate and FSU takes a ten-spot hit. Add is some reworking of the top and a big gap between Missouri and Nebraska that required fixing and you win an award.
The Key Play just moved everyone, including a move of Utah from 12 to after the narrow escape against Air Force; LSU moves up five for unknown reasons.
|1||Blogger So Dear||Wake Forest Demon Deacons||ballot||40|
|3||SpartyMSU||Michigan St. Spartans||ballot||56|
|4||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||56|
|5||Mountain West Connection||Utah Utes||ballot||60|
Your tortoise of the week is Wake Forest blog Blogger So Dear, which moved the week's big losers down 3 (Michigan State, already at 14), 5 (Florida State), and 6 (Missouri) and left everything else he could alone. Some of this is accurate forecasting (MSU, Nebraska already at 11) but the static behavior at the end of the poll is an indication of a guy going off his last ballot when thinking of this one, which is mildly discouraged.