I entirely understand them being left off, as they haven't really played amazing competition, but I would probably give them a little love and sneak them in the top 25. They are 3-0 and have 2 wins over BCS opponents. I would probably switch them with ISU or Michigan, but you could make a case for all three to be right on the fringe.
Blogpoll Ballot, Week 4
We are still short on the clarity, but there was a ton of carnage in the middle:
Alabama's temporarily validating win against Penn State looks like the kind of thing that a lot of teams could pull off and they fall behind LSU, which paired its Oregon win with one over Mississippi State. Oklahoma flies to the head of the class on the assumption that @FSU is the best win anyone's acquired this year.
Lower down it's not that surprising until you get to #14, whereupon five of the next 11 teams were booted from the poll. I elect to shove a couple of teams who are playing well and have good wins above Arkansas and South Carolina. South Carolina in particular appears to be living on borrowed time after being out-played by Georgia and scraping by Navy.
At the bottom you will find Michigan, mostly because I ran out of teams I could plausibly insert if you think Notre Dame is going to end up around 8-4 or 9-3. I regret having to do this.
USC is high considering how they played against Minnesota at home, but you're right - who do you put ahead of them at this point?
I'm sure Texas will continue to improve over the season now that they seem to have figured out who should be playing quarterback (maybe).
There's still a lot of football to be played - there's some teams (perhaps ND) with quality losses that will sneak in at the end of the Blogpoll before the season is through.
was the quality loss?
MICH did not make my ballot
I think its a rule that you cant jump into the poll after a win over EMU
Everyone else fell out of the poll by losing. Somebody's gotta be #25...
Oklahoma and Stanford meeting undefeated in championship. Who can beat them on their schedules?
I see the rest getting tagged by at least 1 loss.
Stanford will lose one game.
Lou Holtz says?
ever heard of them?
You could say the same thing about Wisco though. The B1G is miserable this year.
I'm assuming you pay no attention to Boise St?
I don't think OU's a shoo in for going undefeated. Neutral field with Texas - OU should win but who knows. OU still has A&M at home, @ Baylor and @ Okie St.
Stanford looks to be in pretty good shape until the end of the year. Their last 3 games are Oregon, Cal and ND. Not exactly murder's row but that's a lot of time for those 3 teams to improve.
I would put Vandy in the top 25. I hate how we always jump into the ratings before B1G schedule and then bad stuff happens. Eastern should not move us into the top 25 when UTL was a case of ND pulling defeat from the jaws of victory. Then again, when you have the golden touch...
NC for bottom of poll?. Wins over Rutgers and Virginia - at least those are BCS schools. Ah, screw it. The polls are worthless for a few more weeks.
I think 15 seems a bit much for Texas after crushing a UCLA team which has been pretty terrible under Neuheisel. Also, if it was me, I'd stick Boise higher as they seem to be one of the few teams with excellence on both offense and defense. LSU has by far the best defense in the country, but their O is pretty suspect, and I just don't see that OU is as good as the Sam Bradford counterparts of a couple of years ago.
USC is way too high. They've played all three games at home (two against teams that had to travel a very long way) and all three games were against teams that don't deserve to be on the same field as USC, although they were a play away from losing two of them.
Compare them to us. We've played three games at home. One was against a good team, and although we were fortunate to get out with a win, we still did. USC almost lost at home to Minnesota, then almost lost at home to Utah (who might be decent by not good). Their best win is against Syracuse who isn't good and had to travel to the west coast. Remember Syracuse last week? They beat Rhode Island at home by 7.
I know it's hard in that middle group, but Illinois beat ASU, South Carolina beat Georgia and Clemson beat Auburn. Hell, Baylor and WVU both have better wins than USC. USC has done nothing more impressive than we have, I see no reason for them to be anywhere near that high.
Yeah, USC is the real head scratcher in this poll. USC has squeaked by a good but not great Utah team (Utah was attempting a tying FG at the end of the game which was blocked), nearly choked against a terrible Minnesota team (who lost to N. Mexico St. and squeaked by Miami (NTM)) and soundly defeated Syracuse who needed a furious 4th quarter rally to force OT against Wake Forest and squeaked by a terrible Rhode Island team.
Utah < Notre Dame
Minnesota == EMU
Syracuse > WMU (but only slightly)
Yet, USC vaults from unranked to 14th while Brian begrudgenly includes UM.
I'll agree with you on Notre Dame and concede WMU.
I actually tend to think Minnesota is better than EMU. EMU has beaten 2 FCS opponents; Minnesota played close with USC (probably could have beaten them) and lost a close one to New Mexico State (granted, NMST is BAD).
With that said, UM plays Minnesota this year. What does that say about UM if they don't crush Minnesota by a similar margin of victory as compared with EMU?
I think USC's 2 point win (which was already ugly) looks much worse after Minnesota lost to New Mexico State the very next week. NMST has lost 58 games the last 6 years alone. USC is ranked waaaaaaaay too high.
I'm still not entirely sold on Florida State. I wish our defense and kicking game was half as good as them. They played better against Oklahoma than I thought they would. But still, I feel like they are getting too much of a Notre Dame like treatment. They return a ton of starters but have not beat a legit top ten team since 2005. (I think it's been more than a decade for ND in that department.) The Seminoles should have NEVER have been ranked in the top 5.
Oklahoma? There's not more you can say about them. Their defense is insanely good. They deserve the top spot.
All we have to do is beat Minny by more than two and we look better than USC.
We have two common opponents with USC this year, and we already beat one of them. How we do against Minnesota and how USC does against ND will tell a good bit.
Don't worry, UM will pound Minnesota into so much maroon and gold dust. I guarantee it.
Wisconsin is the clear #1, but if you look at that ballot Michigan has a chance to make some things happen. Everyone is beatable.
We gon shock tha world!!!!
Brian, I love your blogs, but your BlogPoll every week just dumbfounds me. I think you're trying too hard to go along with the norm (essentially repeating the AP poll). You're a blogger, have your own opinion.
You know just as well as the rest of us that Michigan is NOT a top 25 team. This appears to be going down the same line as the Rich Rod era. Beat a couple of crappy team plus Notre Dame, get ranked, lose to Michigan St., and subsequently every other B1G team.
Our play on the field does not justify our rank. The only improvement in the D I've seen from last year is that we've forced some turn overs. And if anything, our offense has taken a nice little step back.
I agree with all of this. However, I also think the majority of the B1G is playing terribly this year and therefore beatable. MSU looked incredibly vanilla against ND and YSU, OSU has looked pretty bad in several games, including Miami, and Iowa just lost to ISU.
Although I don't totally disagree with your sentiment, who is more deserving of being ranked at the bottom than us? You can't just take one team out because they don't deserve to be there, so who do you replace Michigan with?
Also, I can't agree that Oklahoma now has the most legitimate win following the FSU game. FSU is going to get exposed over the course of the season. LSU clearly has the best win over a very good Oregon team. Say what you will about their offense, their defense will keep them in every game they play this year; which just may be enough in an offensively underwhelming SEC this year.