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College Football BlogPoll Top 25: Oregon Moves Upward; Boise State Not So Much

Boise State's first place votes are hastily removed, the entire ACC gets the boot, and Oklahoma, Oregon, Stanford, and South Carolina leap heavenward. Also this week some sketchy ballots start getting the cocked eyebrow.

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The Boise State debate will rage in the mainstream all year, but Blogpoll denizens seem to have already declared that Boise gets no bananas for a last-second win over a team that lost to a I-AA team. The Broncos lost every single one of their 30 first place votes from last week, sliding behind Ohio State, Oregon, and fellow mid-major TCU after watching their marquee win go down in flames against James Madison.

Farther down the poll, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Stanford leap up after impressive victories. A bunch of other teams towards the bottom benefit from the ACC apocalypse, sliding up anywhere from four to seven spots. The ACC is told to GTFO with the single exception of #19 Miami. 50-50 they're still ranked because Jacory Harris may throw interceptions but is so, so fly.

SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 College Football Rankings

Results for Week 3

# School Points/blog SD Delta
1 Alabama Crimson Tide (82) 24.6 1.20 --
2 Ohio St. Buckeyes (18) 23.8 1.74 Arrow_up 1
3 Oregon Ducks (2) 20.7 2.46 Arrow_up 3
4 TCU Horned Frogs 20.4 3.21 --
5 Boise St. Broncos 20.3 4.73 Arrow_down -3
6 Oklahoma Sooners 19.6 3.13 Arrow_up 6
7 Texas Longhorns 18.4 3.44 Arrow_down -2
8 Nebraska Cornhuskers 17.1 3.55 Arrow_down -1
9 Iowa Hawkeyes 17.1 3.68 Arrow_down -1
10 Florida Gators 15.3 4.04 Arrow_down -1
11 Wisconsin Badgers 13.3 4.31 --
12 South Carolina Gamecocks 12.7 4.44 Arrow_up 11
13 Utah Utes 11.7 4.43 Arrow_up 1
14 Arkansas Razorbacks 10.5 4.28 Arrow_up 6
15 LSU Tigers (1) 9.9 5.03 Arrow_up 4
16 Auburn Tigers 9.0 4.29 Arrow_up 5
17 Stanford Cardinal 8.4 3.78 Arrow_up 11
18 Michigan Wolverines (1) 8.0 5.70 Arrow_up 7
19 Miami Hurricanes 7.2 4.47 Arrow_down -9
20 Arizona Wildcats 5.5 4.98 Arrow_up 4
21 USC Trojans 4.2 4.72 Arrow_up 1
22 Penn St. Nittany Lions 3.7 3.35 Arrow_down -6
23 California Golden Bears 3.4 4.60 Arrow_up 19
24 Houston Cougars 3.3 4.09 Arrow_up 12
25 West Virginia Mountaineers 2.0 3.05 Arrow_up 2
Others Receiving Votes: Air Force Falcons | Missouri Tigers | Oregon St. Beavers | Clemson Tigers | North Carolina Tar Heels | Texas Tech Red Raiders | Pittsburgh Panthers | Fresno St. Bulldogs | Oklahoma St. Cowboys | Texas A&M Aggies | Michigan St. Spartans | Georgia Bulldogs | Florida St. Seminoles | Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets | East Carolina Pirates | Maryland Terrapins | Nevada Wolf Pack | Virginia Tech Hokies | Kentucky Wildcats | BYU Cougars | Boston College Eagles | Baylor Bears | Kansas St. Wildcats | Notre Dame Fighting Irish | South Florida Bulls | N.C. State Wolfpack | Indiana Hoosiers | Connecticut Huskies | Temple Owls | Arizona St. Sun Devils | Northwestern Wildcats | Cincinnati Bearcats | San Diego St. Aztecs
Updated: Sep 15, 2010 7:36 AM PD

Total Ballots: 104

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Justify Your Existence


  • #3 Oregon (#5 AP, #6 coaches)
  • #6 Oklahoma (#7 AP, #9 coaches)
  • #12 South Carolina (#13 AP, #16 coaches)
  • #18 Michigan (#20 AP, #22 coaches)


  • #5 Boise State (#3 AP, #3 coaches)
  • #7 Texas (#6 AP, #4 coaches)
  • #10 Florida (#7 coaches)
  • #15 LSU (#12 coaches)
  • #21 USC (#18 AP)
  • #25 West Virginia (#21 AP, coaches)

Wack Ballot Watchdog

Outlying first place votes:

  • LSU gets one for some bizarre reason. The voter is "Blatant Homerism," and their homerism is for… Oklahoma. You figure it out. Thus far LSU beat a crippled UNC and Vandy, which seems worthy of inclusion on a resume ballot but somewhere in the 10-15 range, no?
  • Michigan was bound to pick up some crazy resume guy who noticed M played two BCS opponents, unlike just about everyone else, one of which beat another BCS opponent. They get a first place vote from the Purple Wimple, which also has LSU #3. What is going on? (FWIW, this won't last: over the next three weeks the Wolverines take on UMass, Bowling Green, and Indiana.)

Just plain bizarre:

  • Five(!!!) people are still voting for Virginia Tech. What does it take, people? What does it take?
  • Frank Helps You Think It All Out is definitely a power-poller and he's got USC #7, three spots clear of the next most enthusiastic voter.
  • South Florida picks up a #18 vote from Shakin' the Southland, presumably for staying close to Florida for a half.
  • Indiana blog the Crimson Quarry still has Oklahoma #17 after their demolition of Florida State. No one else goes lower than #13. They also didn't seem to get the message about BYU's loss; they're still #15.

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.

# School Points/blog SD
1 Michigan Wolverines (1) 8.0 5.70
2 LSU Tigers (1) 9.9 5.03
3 Arizona Wildcats 5.5 4.98
4 Boise St. Broncos 20.3 4.73
5 USC Trojans 4.2 4.72

This makes total sense to me: when you're ranked #17 and you have a first place vote you're movin' on up when it comes to variance. This is presumably a split between the resume voters, who see W UConn and W Notre Dame and compare it to the rest of the country's diet of cupcakes, and the more conventional folk, who remember last year and have glanced at what passes for the Michigan defensive two-deep.

Ballot Math

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.

Mr. Bold

# Blog Team Ballot Avg Error
1 Black Heart Gold Pants Iowa Hawkeyes ballot 9.90
2 The Purple Wimple TCU Horned Frogs ballot 7.74
3 Boys of Old Florida Florida Gators ballot 5.51
4 Rakes of Mallow Notre Dame Fighting Irish ballot 5.08
5 SB Nation Atlanta Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets ballot 4.19

The war between the insane resume zealots goes to BHGP this week after losing out to The Purple Wimple last week. Because of the hugely bizarre ballots that get spit out by some of these systems it's not that interesting to talk about the weirdness going on here. A ballot with Houston in the top five because it beat up Texas State and UTEP worse than Alabama beat up on San Jose State and Penn State pretty much explains itself.

I will say this: the focus on raw victory margin in the BHGP ballot is logically wrong since a team like Houston may win by 40 but if they give up 24 points it seems like the chances they blow a big lead are greater than a defensive team that has allowed two field goals this year like, say, Alabama. A two touchdown lead for the Tide is a greater predictor of victory than a two touchdown lead for Houston.

Mr. Numb Existence

# Blog Team Ballot Avg Error
1 Baltimore Sports Report Maryland Terrapins ballot 1.27
2 OverThePylon Ball St. Cardinals ballot 1.53
3 The Owl's Nest Temple Owls ballot 1.55
4 SpartyMSU Michigan St. Spartans ballot 1.68
5 Hog Database Arkansas Razorbacks ballot 1.90

Despite the impressively low winning number for the Baltimore Sports Report, the Quest for the Perfect Ballot ends at #3, where Boise State pops up instead of poll-approved Oregon. Note that in the past this category has had a strange tendency to represent teams that are having disappointing, listless seasons—possibly because the voters can't be bothered to think of anything but chalk—and Ball State shows up after losing to a I-AA team for the second straight year. I'm just sayin'…

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 Coulter/Kos Award

# Blog Team Ballot Bias
1 TrojanWire USC Trojans ballot 6.79
2 Hog Database Arkansas Razorbacks ballot 3.55
3 Corn Nation Nebraska Cornhuskers ballot 1.86
4 Tilting at Windmills Oklahoma Sooners ballot 1.40
5 Mountain West Connection Utah Utes ballot 1.34

Last week was a double-dip for the CK Award since week 1 winner Miami did not have a line in its opening game against I-AA FAMU. They did have a line in what was basically a throttling by Ohio State: –10. They fell two points short despite two return touchdowns. Week two winner Arkansas also failed to cover against Louisiana-Monroe, winning 31-7 against a 34 point spread.

That brings the CK Award to 2-0 for the season, 1-1 straight up. But if this continued ability to send teams to defeat whenever remotely plausible (and sometimes even when not) does not convince you, this has to:

Junior Dennis Johnson has been sidelined indefinitely after suffering a "bowel" injury in the Razorbacks’ 31-7 win against Louisiana-Monroe. The injury required surgery in Little Rock shortly after the game and left Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino to say he was "very, very concerned" about the Texarkana native.

Johnson will be fine after healing up in the hospital. If you want your players' bowels to remain intact, do not win this award.

Which of course brings us to this week's winner: TrojanWire. They don't have to worry about their team getting disemboweled because the NCAA already did that, so a three-point win over Virginia and the no-defense-fest in Hawaii is worthy of #15. USC has a stiff test this weekend against… aww, hamburgers… Minnesota. Alarmingly, the spread here is just 13 points in USC's favor.

The Straight Bangin' Award

# Blog Team Ballot Bias
1 The Purple Wimple TCU Horned Frogs ballot -16.44
2 Black Heart Gold Pants Iowa Hawkeyes ballot -16.08
3 Boys of Old Florida Florida Gators ballot -3.29
4 Block-C Clemson Tigers ballot -0.93
5 Hey Jenny Slater Georgia Bulldogs ballot -0.64

More of the same with the resume guys here; Iowa barely qualifies for the BHGP poll and the Purple Wimple chucked TCU down to #22 after the obliterated Tennessee Tech. That's a little odd: he's got TCU behind a number of teams who haven't played anyone at all (Texas, Wisconsin, Michigan State) when TCU has a win over Oregon State. The next most-skeptical TCU voter has them #11.

Meanwhile, East Carolina is in the top ten. Wha? Maybe this guy just needs attention.

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.

Mr. Manic-Depressive

# Blog Team Ballot Swing
1 Black Heart Gold Pants Iowa Hawkeyes ballot 380
2 Boys of Old Florida Florida Gators ballot 338
3 The Purple Wimple TCU Horned Frogs ballot 330
4 Rakes of Mallow Notre Dame Fighting Irish ballot 238
5 SB Nation Atlanta Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets ballot 202


Mr. Stubborn

# Blog Team Ballot Swing
1 BCS Guru UCLA Bruins ballot 86
2 There Is No Name On My Jersey Penn St. Nittany Lions ballot 92
3 SpartyMSU Michigan St. Spartans ballot 108
4 Eleven Warriors Ohio St. Buckeyes ballot 114
5 Corn Nation Nebraska Cornhuskers ballot 114

The lone refuge of conventional voters early in the season, BCS Guru takes home the title largely for being patient with Boise (down only one) after the VT implosion. Lot of laddering going on in that ballot, though Stanford does take an impressive jump after the Guru presumably watched them dismantle UCLA.