LSU sweeps all the first-place votes in the Week 13 BlogPoll, topping all 72 ballots and ranking ahead of No. 2 Alabama by more than a point per blog. But it's the SEC West's separation from the field, from No. 3 Arkansas to No. 4 Stanford and No. 5 Oklahoma State, that's the really interesting aspect of this week's voting.
Arkansas is closer to the points per blog of a unanimous No. 4 than a strong No. 3, but the Razorbacks are closer to the Crimson Tide than to the Cardinal, taking a massive 1.94 points per blog advantage on Stanford. Clearly, the BlogPoll voters have a definite idea of what team is the third-best in the nation.
Elsewhere, USC makes its first appearance in the BlogPoll top 15 this season, moving up five spots to No. 13 after upsetting Oregon at Autzen Stadium, and the Ducks join Oklahoma, Clemson, and Nebraska in tumbling after Week 12 losses.
Wack Ballot Watchdog
Husker Mike's Blasphemy ranked Iowa State after the Cyclones laid Oklahoma State low. The Unbalanced Line ranked 7-4 Temple. Virginia climbed as high as 18th on Track 'Em Tigers' ballot. Some idiot at Alligator Army gave Northern Illinois its first vote of the year since Week 2.
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 No. 25 when looking for the lowest, otherwise teams that everyone agreed were terrible (say, Tulane) would all be at the top.
|4||South Carolina Gamecocks||11.49||3.72|
I've been harping on the problems with ranking USC for what seems like months now, but it bears repeating: USC is a good team that a lot of East Coast voters don't get to pay a lot of attention to, and one that didn't have a signature win until its victory at Oregon in Week 12. Now, after that win, voters still can't agree on the Trojans: they're as high as sixth on five ballots, but also get a No. 25 ranking from Red Cup Rebellion.
Houston, meanwhile, keeps on with the "being undefeated" and "making voters look up their schedule on a weekly basis to see if any of its wins are good" things, and Oklahoma remains a talented team with befuddling losses.
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||3.83|
|2||NittanyWhiteOut||Penn St. Nittany Lions||ballot||3.02|
|3||The Ralphie Report||Colorado Buffaloes||ballot||2.53|
|4||Red Cup Rebellion||Mississippi Rebels||ballot||2.43|
|5||Let's Go Rockets||Toledo Rockets||ballot||2.29|
This is what happens when Frogs O' War's resume balloting compels SB Nation's TCU blog to rank Virginia Tech third and Michigan State sixth while putting Oklahoma and Clemson in the bottom five teams of its top 25.
|1||Card Chronicle||Louisville Cardinals||ballot||0.98|
|2||Tom Fornelli||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||1.20|
|3||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||1.34|
|4||Eleven Warriors||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||1.34|
|5||Frank the Tank's Slant||Illinois Fighting Illini||ballot||1.35|
Kudos to Card Chronicle for still caring about Louisville football during the Cardinals' awfu... wait, Louisville can make it to the Orange Bowl?
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||Frogs O' War||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||5.69|
|2||BCS Guru||USC Trojans||ballot||3.89|
|3||The Key Play||Virginia Tech Hokies||ballot||3.51|
|4||Garnet and Black Attack||South Carolina Gamecocks||ballot||3.51|
|5||NittanyWhiteOut||Penn St. Nittany Lions||ballot||1.86|
Just when I start to suspect that Frogs O' War's resume balloting may be a convenient way to make me write about them every week, I check out all the votes for TCU and realize that Dan Shanoff has the Horned Frogs sixth. I mean, TCU lost to SMU.
|1||Corn Nation||Nebraska Cornhuskers||ballot||-3.68|
|2||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||-3.36|
|3||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||-0.67|
|4||Rock M Nation||Missouri Tigers||ballot||-0.07|
|5||Let's Go Rockets||Toledo Rockets||ballot||-0.01|
I've been writing this for long enough to tell you, without looking, that Corn Nation doesn't have Nebraska ranked (verified), and that The Ciskie Blog probably has Wisconsin No. 19 (okay, No. 17). It is literally impossible to not show up in this category if your team is even receiving votes at this point, though, because Let's Go Rockets didn't rank Toledo, and Toledo got one 25th-place vote, and here they are.
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||Frogs O' War||TCU Horned Frogs||ballot||180|
|2||Corn Nation||Nebraska Cornhuskers||ballot||140|
|3||Tilting at Windmills||Oklahoma Sooners||ballot||108|
|4||Inside The Shoe||Ohio St. Buckeyes||ballot||104|
|5||Let's Go Rockets||Toledo Rockets||ballot||96|
Something something resume balloting almost always produces swing when you also introduce a caveat that a team that lost in a given week cannot be ranked ahead of the team it fell to something something.
|1||The Ciskie Blog||Wisconsin Badgers||ballot||60|
|2||And The Valley Shook!||LSU Tigers||ballot||68|
|3||One Foot Down||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||ballot||70|
|4||Hog Database||Arkansas Razorbacks||ballot||72|
|5||Card Chronicle||Louisville Cardinals||ballot||78|
I don't have a lot to say here, except that I appreciate And The Valley Shook! having a gratuitous exclamation point in its name.