to play football, not to play trumpet
Ok, kids: it's that time of year again. If you have a blog that…
- has existed for at least six months,
- posts substantial, original content about college football at least 2 or 3 times a week, and
- is willing to disclose the author's favorite team
…you're welcome to apply for entry to the BlogPoll for 2009. The BlogPoll is a CBS Sports-sponsored college football poll that follows the same format as the AP and Coaches' do, except with way more transparency.
More information on the selection criteria is available, if you want it, and there is also a treatise on desired voter philosophy. If all this seems like fun, email me with your blog URL and (if it's not bleeding obvious) team affiliation, at which point I'll put you on the list. If you've already done this there's no need to do it again; I've got you in the hopper.
The secret cabal of blogpoll assemblers should have decisions in the first week of August; the preseason poll will come out a couple weeks before the season.
Your top ten:
|3||Southern Cal (1)||22.7||3.0||2|
Extracurriculars, a couple of Utah explanations, and the rest of your top twenty five (including the world's noblest CK Award) at CBS Sports.
|1||Southern Cal (40)||24.3||1.0||2|
|4||Ohio State (9)||21.8||4.0||2|
Total Ballots: 75
Like everyone else, the BlogPoll anoints USC #1 after they smoked Virginia. The main difference here is not order of teams but the strength of opinion: USC dominates all comers by over two points per ballot; in other polls the gap between Georgia and the Trojans is vanishingly small.
Also, the BlogPoll’s previous bullishness on VaTech? Not so much.
Wack Ballot Watchdog
A lot of the weird votes for particular teams are the result of “resume ranking,” about which more later. They won’t be covered here because at least they’re logically consistent.
- Lord knows what Garnet and Black Attack sees in #15 North Carolina. When ESPN says you “edged” the Cowboys and they aren’t talking about Dallas or Oklahoma State or even Wyoming, that ain’t good.
- From Old Virginia is hanging on to VT at #16.
- The Bama Sports report has Oregon State #23 but no Stanford, who basically smoked them.
- Miami at #11 seems… enthusiastic.
There’s still not much because we have little data. Extracurriculars after the jump.
|2||Ohio State (17)||22.9||2.0||24|
|3||Southern Cal (15)||22.9||3.0||23|
Total Ballots: 78
Hurray that's the poll hurray. And it's a little meh, with a swap of WVU and Clemson the only difference between the AP and the blogpoll until you reach #14. From there there are some multiple-spot differences. The blogpoll is
- bullish on VT (14 BP, 17 AP), Oregon (18 BP, 21 AP)
- down on BYU (20 BP, 16 AP), and Illinois (22 BP, 20 AP)
I blame myself for not providing more organization in the run-up to the season. Details after the jump.
<span style="font-style: italic;">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.</span>
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.
The most interesting thing here is West Virginia's extremely high standard deviation, unusual for a top-ten team.
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.
Normally I come down hard on these folks because when we get deep into the season they're defying poll guidelines, reason, and justice by placing Hawaii in the top ten or something. In the preseason everyone's entitled to their stupid opinion (again: all opinions expressed here are stupid) so, like, whatever.
Saurian Sagacity takes the first Mr. Bold of the year for such oddities as QB-less LSU #2, QB-less and OL-less Michigan #8(!?!?!?!?!?!), Florida State #10(!?), Miami #15, Notre Dame #16... is this poll from 1988?
Mr. Numb Existence goes to newcomer Michigan Sports Center. There's nothing interesting to say about this category ever because the ballots in question are pretty much like the poll you see above.
Next we have the Coulter/Krugman 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 is a dire one; last season only the overwhelming black hole of suck that is Notre Dame could forestall the inevitable humiliating loss suffered by the team supported by the unlucky doof who overrated his team more than anyone else.
So, good news Cal fans: the "Enlightened Spartan" ranks Michigan State #10 and clocks a massive 15.65 bias rating; a total of six other blogs (in 78!) bothered to vote for MSU; this ballot provides well over half of MSU's 27 points. This is a truly egregious violation of poll ethics and will no doubt be severely punished.
Also note that Tennessee blogs are far more enthusiastic about the Vols than the poll at large. Sort of...
College Game Balls is your victor here for placing VT #21. Another Tennessee blog futilely attempts to divert the wrath of the CK Award by slightly underrating the Vols, and Bruce Ciskie's probably right about Wisconsin.
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.
Swing doesn't exist in the preseason poll, obviously.
ATTENTION: if I invited you to participate, you responded to me, and you are not on the following list, please email me ASAP. I have a nagging feeling I'm missing a few blogs, but I scoured my inbox and couldn't find anything. Additions will be final by week one. Email me if you've got a problem.
- Off The Tracks (Purdue)
- Lake The Posts (Northwestern)
- Varsity Blue (Michigan)
- Michigan Sports Center
- The Nittany Line (Penn State)
Two additional cuts:
- Run Up The Score folded itself in with Black Shoe Diaries.
- Maize 'n' Brew got bumped in favor of Michigan blogs with higher traffic levels and more content.
(7 cuts; net -2. Purdue, NW now covered, net +2)
- Scalp 'Em (Florida State)
- Canespace (Miami)
- GT Sports (Georgia Tech)
- Old Gold And Blog (Wake Forest)
- BC Interruption (BC)
(Two cuts; net +3. Wake, Miami now covered but we lost our NC State coverage. Net +1)
- Bleed Scarlet (Rutgers)
(No cuts; +1, Rutgers now covered; net +1)
- Clay Travis/Deadspin (Tennessee)
- Fulmer's Belly (Tennessee)
- Gate 21 (Tennessee)
- The Hotty Toddy Blog (Ole Miss)
- Vanderbilt Sports Line
- The Joe Cribbs Car Wash (Auburn)
- The Auburner
- Third Saturday In Blogtober (Alabama - actually a weird Bama/Tenn blog; poll will accept ballots from the 'Bama half)
- Update: Bama Sports Report was one of the ones I forgot.
There is an additional cut:
- Losers With Socks. LWS is only vaguely a Tennessee blog and they have no actual analysis of the football, only short humor posts. They're bumped because of the influx of quality UT options.
(Four blogs removed for a net +5. Auburn, Vandy now represented, net +2)
- Barking Carnival (Texas)
- Double T Nation (Texas Tech)
- Ralphie Report (Colorado)
- Mizzourah (Missouri)
- Rock M Nation (Missouri)
(One cut; net +4. Texas Tech, Missouri now covered, net +2)
(Three cuts; net +1. WSU now covered; net +1)
(Three cuts; net -1. Utah covered, but we lost our Fresno State and Navy guys. Net -1.)
Totals: this year features ten more blogs covering eight additional teams. Conferences by participation:
- Big Ten: 20
- Big Twelve: 13
- ACC: 9
- Pac 10: 8
- Others: 8
- Big East: 6
We're working towards better parity amongst voters -- the Big Ten was the only conference to shed members -- but there's still some way to go. I'm willing to bend the admissions rules for a few more ACC, Pac-10, or Big East voters if you're out there.
There was some confusion about blogpoll membership, so a clarifying post. First: if you're in and you're not on the list below, there's no need to email me. Your place is secure.
The following blogs have been cut for various reasons:
THEY NO LONGER EXIST
- M Zone (Michigan)
- Dump Dorrell (UCLA)
- JournoRock (Alabama)
- Pitch Right (Navy)
- Ramblin' Racket (Georgia Tech)
NO ONE'S POSTED SINCE LIKE JANUARY
- 82 Sluggo Win (USC)
- House Rock Built (Notre Dame)
- Bemusement Park (Iowa)
- Off Tackle (A&M)
- Ron Bellamy's Underachieving All Stars (Michigan)
THEY DIDN'T VOTE
- Deep South Sports (Mississippi)
- SportsBiz (Northwestern)
- Georgia Sports Blog (Georgia)
- Fresno State Football (Fresno State)
- Section Six (NC State)
- Wisconsin Badger Sports (Wisconsin)
THEY'RE NOT SPORTS BLOGS
- Boi From Troy (USC)
- Straight Bangin' (Michigan)
If you see your name on this list and still wish to participate in the poll, please send me an email and the admission committee will give your re-application due consideration. There are a couple of other blogs that I don't know what to do with and will be emailing to see what's up.
NOTE: With the departure of three Michigan blogs I can now lower the cap on voters per team to four, and have done so.
I try to keep up on the hotness as far as college football blogs go and have standing invitations for the following sites that either 1) have an annoying contact form on their site (boo) or 2) have no contact information whatsoever (BOO):
- Barking Carnival (Texas)
- The National Championship Issue (?)
- Washington Husky Sports
- Bama Sports Report
- Scalp 'Em (FSU)
- Georgia Tech Sports
- Bears Necessity (Cal)
- Excuse Me For My Voice (Cal)
- allCanes.com (Miami)
- Mississippi State Sports Blog
If you write one of these blogs, email me for signup instructions. A number of other blogs that have contact information somewhere on their site have also been invited.
IF YOU DIDN'T GET THE EMAIL, by no means are you unworthy of consideration; I'm just one guy and am not omniscient. If you've already emailed me and didn't get the email, that doesn't mean you've been passed over. That's just going out to blogs that meet the criteria who may not be aware of the poll's existence and support under-represented teams or conferences.