"Though I received no official response to these sophisticated and elegant tweets to the Illini Athletic Department, I would like to think that Beckman spent the evening prank calling everyone in Illinois named George McLellan and then ordering an absurd amount of hats off an internet haberdashery to hoard in his home's hat annex."
BlogPoll Week 15
Hurray, that's the poll hurray. If you're interested, you can see all the individual ballots here.
Fallers: LSU and VT's pratfalls in their respective title games had voters drop them down to the bottom of the credible two-loss-ish teams and outside of the top ten entirely, and UCLA didn't impresss much either. The Bruins are the lowest ranked two-loss BCS team in a season ending BlogPoll ever(!). Ever! That's a history spanning literally several months.
Risers: Georgia surged forward on the strength of said LSU pratfall, as the Dawgs had more than a little to do with it. Auburn's last-gasp victory over UGA pushed them forward as well. Thus the strange site of the SEC champion slotted behind a team that didn't make the title game. Not sure what Michigan did to swap places with Boston College, but I'm not complaining.
Wack Ballot Watchdog: The Frank Solich Award for not watching the SEC title game goes to newbie The View From Rocky Top, who still has the Tigers #5 despite the fact that he certainly watched LSU lose to who-dat Tennessee early in the year... no, wait, we have a new winner of the Frank Solich Award. At least TVFRT had UGA (#5) ahead of LSU. The Bemusement Park has the Tigers #6... and UGA #12. Alabama also got a shiv from Mark, dropping out of the poll from #11 despite not doing anything at all last weekend.
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.
UCLA wrests the standard deviation crown away from Texas Tech, as the eternal conundrum "what the hell do we do with a 9-2 team that can't stop a Pop Warner running back?" surpasses previous champ "what the hell do we do with a 9-2 team that has played mostly Pop Warner teams?"
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 is the aforementioned newbie The View From Rocky Top, who, um, really likes the SEC: UGA #4, LSU #5(!), Florida #6(!), Auburn #12, Alabama #14... okay. Florida State is #9, GT #11... er, okay. Perhaps the ballot entry form was excessively confusing? Perhaps the Tennessee Season of Doom has sent our newest poller into a nervous breakdown where this year never happened and it's 1967 or something? It is the mystery. Explain yourself! Try not to say the words "Southern Speed," lest you feel the lash of my whip!
Mr. Numb Existence is Tony of Have You Met Tony? Personally, I haven't, but I feel that I have.
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 now the property of Mark Hasty's Bemusement Park, which has Iowa #18, though that doesn't seem totally ludicrous given his other options at that spot... and the other opinions expressed about the SEC.
Continuing a theme from earlier, the Straight Bangin' Award goes to fans of a team that was just waxed in demoralizing fashion: Bruins Nation. Doing their part to get Karl Dorrell fired, they omitted UCLA from their ballot entirely. Will UCLA's loss of standing in the prestigious BlogPoll prove the final straw for the UCLA administration? (Also, lookit all the Michigan voters, again.)
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 is Bruins Nation (and they're probably on a depressive swing right now, I'm guessing). They excised previous #13 UCLA, as mentioned earlier, but also hacked out #4 LSU entirely... is this an oversight? I can't imagine that LSU is really less worthy of a vote than 25 other teams.