If you're a college football fan who's online a lot (hi!), you see the following argument raised against any team that anyone says is good: that team ain't played nobody.
The regional vernacular might vary, so maybe the good teams in your part of the world get accused of not having played any opponents of significant renown, but the point remains the same. Fans look for reasons to drag down any team that's ranked ahead of their own, and at certain points in the season, absolutely nobody has done anything that's impressed the populace, based on this math.
And it's important to keep strength of schedule in mind. Beating good teams matters more than beating bad teams.
Still! We take this way too far.
Let's cruise through the undefeated teams currently in the AP Top 25 for a bunch of examples.
- No. 1 Alabama ain't played nobody. Both Ole Miss and USC got blown out by other teams as well.
- No. 2 Ohio State ain't played nobody. Oklahoma lost to Houston, and therefore is bad.
- No. 3 Louisville ain't played nobody. Charlotte and Syracuse, plus an injured Florida State at home? That ain't nobody.
- No. 4 Michigan ain't played nobody, other than a bunch of characters from works of fiction.
- No. 5 Clemson ain't played nobody. The Tigers' best win is over an Auburn team that Texas A&M beat more soundly.
- No. 6 Houston ain't played nobody. Ohio State beat Oklahoma way worse than UH did.
- No. 7 Stanford ain't played nobody. Alabama beat USC way worse than Stanford did.
- No. 8 Michigan State ain't played nobody. Notre Dame also lost to Texas, which lost to Cal, which lost to a Mountain West team.
- OK, No. 9 Washington ain't played nobody.
- No. 10 Texas A&M ain't played nobody. Auburn also lost to Clemson. Ignore the win over UCLA. Look over there!
- No. 11 Wisconsin ain't played nobody. Well, it might look like UW has, but it also almost lost to Georgia State, which ain't nobody. Therefore, UW ain't played nobody. Reducto facto or whatever, you homer.
- Likewise, No. 12 Georgia has seemingly played somebody, but almost lost to FCS Nicholls.
- Likewise, No. 14 Tennessee beat Virginia Tech, which is somebody, but was lucky to beat Appalachian State. Add those together and you get N for Nobody.
- No. 15 Miami ain't played nobody. Its best win is over App State. Ignore that thing I just said about App State nearly beating Tennessee.
- No. 16 Baylor never plays nobody.
- No. 17 Arkansas ain't played nobody. TCU struggled with an FCS team.
- No. 19 Florida extremely ain't played nobody.
- No. 20 Nebraska ain't played nobody. I don't have a reason for why beating Oregon shouldn't count. Next question.
- No. 22 San Diego State ain't played nobody, since it's not a Power 5 team. Oh, it beat a Power 5 team that beat Texas, which beat Notre Dame? Next question.
- No. 24 Utah ain't played nobody. BYU also lost to UCLA.
So there you have it. If you're an addict to transitive wins who bases everything only on win-loss results so far and not on how teams have looked, how they've won, and other troublesome pieces of context, there are no good college football teams.
Let's continue this exact, transitive, the-only-thing-that-matters-is-who-beat-whom argument for 12 more weeks, and then we'll put the four least-worst teams in the Playoff until Jan. 10, when we can finally agree that one team out of 128 actually played somebody.
Shout out to Podcast Ain't Played Nobody.
Here's a fun and reasonable one that angers surprisingly many people: How competitive would North Dakota State be in the Big Ten West?
Spencer went to Boone to watch Miami-App State, and just ended up watching Louisville. The Top Whatever is thus topped by Louisville.
The Power 5 teams that've made the biggest jumps in Bill's numbers so far: Colorado, Miami, Wisconsin, and Indiana. There's also a bad list.
"Being the top linebacker [recruit] in the nation, I didn't know how to cope with it." I wouldn't either. A UCLA player's going through a tough time.
The Bama game revealed what Ole Miss is: an offense that just chucks it.
The SEC West Fired Coaches Total is rising back up, with a huge Week 4 ahead.
What happens if Clemson, FSU, and Louisville all tie? Some other tiebreakers, eventually ending in a computer just picking one or somebody just picking one out of a hat.
If you've watched a college football game in the last decade, you've heard "a Percy Harvin-type" used to describe every person on an Urban Meyer team who stands below 6 feet tall. You've grown tired of the term, actually. Well, Ohio State's got a whole bunch of Percy Harvin-types right now, so get used to it.
USC's head coach denied a transferring player punched him in the face on the way out, in case you were wondering whether USC's being really USC these days.
Having to make yet another midseason coaching change is one thing that could really dampen the Charlie Strong revival in a hurry.
Texas' lieutenant governor is here to say, folks, that the Big 12 does not have 12 teams right now, despite its name.
Jim Harbaugh stands by his scalding-hot take on milk, even when told by Dan Patrick that Urban Meyer disagrees.
PREVIOUS: How would the Big 12 overreact to missing the Playoff this time? Would it add 18 new members, three conference title games, and a lightning round?