LSU and Alabama will head into their November showdown as the top two teams in the BlogPoll. And no one else is even close.
LSU takes the top spot in the Week 9 BlogPoll, racking up 74 first-place votes. This marks more than a month on top for the Tigers, but it's the first time they've received more than the maximum 25 points per blog. (There's the something wrong with the BlogPoll this week, we know about it, we don't have reliable standard deviation numbers this week because of it, and we apologize.)
Right behind LSU is Alabama, which claims 12 first-place votes. Oklahoma State, Stanford, and Clemson round out the top five, and Boise State is a close sixth, concluding a tier of four unbeaten teams that is clearly stalking the SEC titans.
Elsewhere, previously unbeaten Oklahoma and Wisconsin tumble out of the top 10, each falling eight spots, while Penn State rejoins the top 20, USC rejoins the top 25, and West Virginia just barely hangs on to the No. 25 spot.
Wack Ballot Watchdog
Crazier: somehow getting 86 first-place votes out of 84 ballots, or ranking LSU third behind Alabama and Boise State, as Red and Black Attack did?
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||Frogs O' War||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||2.80|
|3||Garnet and Black Attack||South Carolina Gamecocks||ballot||2.06|
|4||The Ralphie Report||Colorado Buffaloes||ballot||1.97|
|5||SpartyMSU||Michigan St. Spartans||ballot||1.95|
I find it heartening that we have an array of approaches here: Frogs O' War keeps on with the resume balloting and penalizes Wisconsin (No. 19!) and Oklahoma (No. 14!); EDSBS' Spencer Hall has Clemson third and Nebraska 21st and USC and Cincinnati in the top 20; and SpartyMSU returns from a two-week hiatus to come up with Oregon and Kansas State slotting in ahead of Clemson and Boise State.
|1||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||0.83|
|2||OverThePylon||Ball St. Cardinals||ballot||1.04|
|3||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||1.08|
|4||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||1.16|
|5||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||1.19|
Scoring under 1.00 in this category is a damn fine achievement, so congrats, Red Cup Rebellion.
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||BCS Guru||USC Trojans||ballot||4.93|
|2||Bucky's 5th Quarter||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||3.33|
|3||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||1.31|
|4||Frogs O' War||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||0.85|
|5||Pistols Firing||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||ballot||0.35|
Your team beats Notre Dame by two touchdowns despite a fluky fumble return for a touchdown, and you elevate that team; BCS Guru's deal, here, is that it had USC No. 18 last week, before the Trojans were even in the top 25, and now has them even higher at No. 16. That'll look like bias, yeah.
And can you blame Bucky's 5th Quarter for keeping Wisconsin in the top 10? Our Wisconsin blog even moved Michigan State into the top 10 ... one spot behind the Badgers.
|1||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||-2.44|
|2||SpartyMSU||Michigan St. Spartans||ballot||-1.33|
|3||Barking Carnival||Texas Longhorns||ballot||-0.87|
|4||Garnet and Black Attack||South Carolina Gamecocks||ballot||-0.85|
|5||NittanyWhiteOut||Penn St. Nittany Lions||ballot||-0.70|
Tilting at Windmills is so down on its Sooners, they dropped from No. 2 to No. 13 in a week, and fell behind Houston (best win: UCLA, I guess?).
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||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||160|
|2||One Foot Down||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||124|
|3||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||118|
|4||Garnet and Black Attack||South Carolina Gamecocks||ballot||106|
|5||Baltimore Sports Report||Maryland Terrapins||ballot||102|
Oklahoma's fall shakes things up for our winner, as does Notre Dame's for our runner-up. Being bullish or bearish on your own team and having to correct for it helps out in Swing; that's why I enjoy being a Florida fan, and NEVER HAVING TO WORRY ABOUT RANKINGS GET WELL SOON JOHN BRANTLEY.
|1||Bucky's 5th Quarter||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||72|
|2||OverThePylon||Ball St. Cardinals||ballot||76|
|3||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||76|
|4||Eleven Warriors||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||80|
|5||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||84|
The presence of two Wisconsin blogs suggests that there might be some Bucky fans clinging to an image of a season that is no longer possible.