Blogpoll Draft Ballot: Week 2

Submitted by Tim on September 14th, 2009 at 9:26 AM

I put a little more thought into this week's ballot than last week's holiday edition. There are still some things I'm not comfortable with, so comments are obviously very welcome.

  • Florida didn't really do anything to move down, but USC and Alabama have definitely had more chances to prove themselves on the big stage so far.
  • For some reason, I ended up with Notre Dame several spots ahead of Michigan, which will be fixed by the final ballot (though I do think the Irish are a pretty legit team this year).
  • I don't really like Iowa and Northwestern towards the end of my ballot, but I didn't really have anybody else off the top of my head that seemed to belong.
  • I don't like Tennessee where they are, especially considering their resume-building win was against a functional bye team.
  • Some of the deltas appear to no be quite right, so don't worry about those too much (especially considering I don't even really look at last week's ballot to formulate the new one).

Help me out in the comments.

Rank Team Delta
1 Southern Cal 2
2 Alabama 2
3 Florida 2
4 Texas 2
5 Penn State 1
6 Brigham Young 1
7 Boise State 2
8 Houston
9 Cincinnati 6
10 California 2
11 Miami (Florida)
12 Georgia Tech
13 TCU 3
14 Nebraska
15 Mississippi 4
16 Ohio State 2
17 Notre Dame 1
19 Tennessee 2
20 Auburn
21 Florida State
22 Michigan
23 LSU
24 Iowa
25 Northwestern
Last week's ballot
Dropped Out: Oklahoma State (#7), North Carolina (#13), Virginia Tech (#17), Utah (#18), Oklahoma (#20), Georgia (#22), Kansas (#24), Oregon (#25).



September 14th, 2009 at 9:35 AM ^

I'm a little surprised you didn't ding Georgia Tech. at least a few spots after their offense laid an egg at home vs. Clemson. The starting QB was 3/14 with 0 TD and 2 INT, and the only reason they won was a fake field goal TD and a last minute field goal. At home. Versus Clemson. I'd drop them just after Auburn.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:41 AM ^

thats not really "laying an egg". and saying that the fake FG is the only reason Tech won is only true in the sense that without those 7 points they would have lost. Josh Nesbitt was 3/14 but he was 2/4 with more than 100 yards of total offense on the last two drives. It doesnt seem like you watched the game


September 14th, 2009 at 10:37 AM ^

I watched the game. Yeah, they put up a lot of yards, but let's take a closer look at the offensive production:

1 rushing touchdown, 3 field goals, 6 punts, and 2 interceptions. The other 2 TDs were a fake field goal and a punt return. Given more typical special teams play, that 16-point offensive performance does not win a lot of games.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:38 AM ^

I don't like USC at #1...their battle with Ohio State looked less like a clash of titans and more like two teams with a lot of holes struggling to find their footing. I'd take Florida against any team in the country if they played tomorrow.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:38 AM ^

Is Cincy a top 10 team at this point? I was at the 70-3 romp Saturday and I have to say their offense (T. Pike in particular) is fantastic, but I don't think they've been tested yet.

Granted they're outscoring opponents by 99 points so far this season and there's less than 150 yards of total offense separating them from Florida, but I still think top 10 is a stretch. Top 20 definitely, top 15 - sure.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:30 AM ^

"Is Cincy a top 10 team at this point? I was at the 70-3 romp Saturday and I have to say their offense (T. Pike in particular) is fantastic, but I don't think they've been tested yet."

They beat the hell out of Big East favorite Rutgers in week 1. For a resume ranking, that's probably good enough for me in week 2.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:35 AM ^

At Oregon State and vs Fresno the next two weeks.

We'll learn a lot more about, but I think Tim is spot on with the Bearcats. They have the best talent and best coach in the Big East.

And, they are the best team in Ohio. No Sugarcoat. Ok, maybe a little Sugarcoat, just to make a tired joke......but I think Cincy is the real deal.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:39 AM ^

Houston should not be 8th, they were unranked last week and although they played great against Okie State, I think they deserve somewhere between 12-18 ranking.

Tennessee should not be in the top 20, maybe top 25, but thats about it.

Notre Dame should probably drop behind M.

Iowa is not a bad choice for 24, but Northwestern squeaked passed Eastern Michigan, I'd drop them for North Carolina.

Why did you drop Utah? They are 2-0. Why did you drop Kansas? They are 2-0 as well.

Okie State deserves to still be ranked IMO, but I guess thats up to you.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:41 AM ^

How can they be out? I like them better than UCLA, Tennessee, Auburn, Iowa, Northwestern, and maybe LSU. And, while they didn't beat Alabama, they played a pretty good game at a neutral site against your #2 team!


September 14th, 2009 at 9:45 AM ^

Ditto on the previous Cincinnati as a 15th-20th comment and add to that GT and TCU should at least flip flop with perhaps dropping GT even further down below 15.

U of M in TX

September 14th, 2009 at 9:46 AM ^

I would put Alabama ahead of USC. USC struggled mightily against OSU.

Houston is a little high. I don't think they are a top 10 team.

Tennessee LOST. Drop them out.

You need to fix the ND/Michigan discrepency.

FSU and NW shouldn't be in the top 25. Both struggled against BAD teams.

Drop Michigan to 25 until we see how the Domers perform against another Big 10 team.

Cosmic Blue

September 14th, 2009 at 9:51 AM ^

Why did you drop them off the planet? You had them at 13 last week, and while they were not that impressive against Uconn, they still won. doesnt seem like that should be a -13


September 14th, 2009 at 9:51 AM ^

I don't understand how Cal can be jumped by Cincinnati after both teams dominated weak opponents this week.

Also, Boise State's ranking is inflated by their win against over-rated Oregon (who barely got by Purdue this week).

Houston should be #15.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:54 AM ^

I get the feeling that you are treating Tennessee like they actually won at home against a good team. Drop them out. They lost at home against a mediocre team. I don't know how that moves someone up.


September 14th, 2009 at 9:56 AM ^

IME, Notre Dame should be ranked ahead of Michigan. Ask yourself if they play ten times on a neutral field who wins the most? Actually here's funny question. Same teams but switch the coaches, does Michigan even win one? LOLWEISISFAT


September 14th, 2009 at 9:59 AM ^

I guess that you're resume voting, but if that's the case BYU should be top 3 after knocking off Oklahoma. And given that curious choice of not ranking Oklahoma, I have NO idea why you have Tennessee ranked at all.

Undefeated dre…

September 14th, 2009 at 10:01 AM ^

So you dumped Ok State because they lost to Houston, then you basically replaced Ok State with Houston in your rankings? Losing to a #8 team shouldn't drop OK State out of the poll...

And if you think USC is #1, Oh State shouldn't drop at all for losing a close game.

Why is LSU so low?

I'd keep VT or Georgia or Kansas or UNC or etc. in the poll ahead of Tennessee and Northwestern.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:22 AM ^

OKSt and Houston should have some kind of rational relationship here. Either the Cowpokes were exposed as a pretender (and therefore Houston should not be highly ranked) or they were beaten by an elite team (in which case OKSt should stay in the high teens or low twenties).

The issue with USC and OSU is similar. From my vantage point, they both looked like talented-but-struggling teams, which would lead me to rate them in the 6-10 slot. You can disagree, certainly, but I'm not sure how anything that happened on that field could lead you to believe that one team is significantly better than the other.

Kansas is getting no love. It's sad, really.

MC Hammer

September 14th, 2009 at 10:19 AM ^

Southern Cal should not be number 1. Period. Ohio State is not a great team. Michigan is really lucky that Pryor didn't come here. I truly believe that. He choked last year against PSU, and he choked Saturday. He didn't have a great game against Navy, and was bad against SC. Their whole offense is merely average; their defense is not as good as in years past, when they had Laurinatis (sp?) and Jenkins and the like.

Even with all that, SC needed McKnight to take over in the final moments to steal a victory. Don't forget about the near pick-six Pryor threw in the first quarter. Without that, who knows how the game would have ended up.

Don't believe the hype about "Barkley's poise." His "poise" on the final drive consisted mostly of turning around and handing to McKnight. They would have scored on the final drive even if Sheridan was their quarterback (I'm exaggerating, but you get my point).

The point I'm trying to make is that while I understand that you are trying to vote based on actual results, the truth is USC, maybe for the first time in years, is not the best team in the country. I would take Florida over them 7 times out of 10.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:22 AM ^

I don't think you've done anything bad at the top. I certainly don't believe that you should keep #1 at #1 just because they won. (Even if it is a lopsided win.)

USC is a good team, and so is OSU. (USC is just better...) That game was supposed to be close. You might have dropped OSU too far.

Houston all the way to #8? This seems excessive. If Houston had lost on a last second FG to an OK State team that you have in your top 10, do you rank them at all? Also, OK State drops out? Again, excessive. If you really believe Houston is #8, you can keep OK St in the top 25, IMO. If Houston is only #15-20, then OK St has to drop out.

ND #17, UM #22 is too far apart. You can make the argument that at a neutral field, ND would win. But I think 5 spots is too big of a separation. (2 at the most.)

Miami (YTM) #11 - Seems high for a team that's just beaten FSU, who isn't the juggernaut that they once were. Low teens - high 20s seems appropriate.

Georgia Tech #12 - Close wins vs. Jacksonville St. and Clemson. I'm not impressed. I'd add 10-15 to that number.

Nebraska #14 - At least they beat the crap out of bad teams. But they are still bad teams.

So Virginia Tech beats the crap out of Marshall, and they get dropped from the rankings? Did they need to drop 100 on the thundering herd to stay ranked?

Sorry, this got a little fisk-y. Didn't mean to be that rough. I will say that (I think) we all feel better when Michigan, Notre Dame, Nebraska, Miami (YTM), and other teams like this are ranked. (Especially if they haven't been ranked recently.) College football seems more "normal" when they are ranked.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:39 AM ^

I am LOL at the Vols inclusion. Keep them in if you want, but you wont after the next few weeks.

They wont get more than 3 SEC wins, and there is not a word I could use to describe what might happen to them this Saturday in the Swamp.

I railed on you for UCLA....that looks good now, but I still think they struggle to a 4-5 Pac 10 record and eventually will be on the outside looking in of any final poll.


September 14th, 2009 at 10:49 AM ^

I am not sure what your criteria is when putting this ballot together, so I can't argue specifics.

Do you really think that Northwestern and Iowa are anywhere near Oklahoma, Oklahoma St, or VaTech, all of whom lost to teams you have ranked in the top 10? Oklahoma just laid 64 points of offense with their 2nd string QB, Oklahoma St beat Georgia, and VaTech just crushed Marshall.

For those three, I would drop Northwestern, Iowa, and Tennessee and put all of them in the 10-20 range.

MI Expat NY

September 14th, 2009 at 11:12 AM ^

I understand it's tough in the first couple weeks, especially comparing 1-1 teams to 2-0 teams that haven't played anyone. But looking at your polling, the first seven out seem to be more worthy than Tennessee, FSU, NW and Iowa, at the least.

I think the problem is you seem to have different criteria for different teams. Lose close games to teams you have ranked in the top 10 (OU, OK St.) they fall completely out of the rankings, but FSU and ND each remain about where they were after dropping similarly tough games (even more troubling considering that FSU almost blew the game to Jacksonville St.)

You seem to be punishing Utah for a closer than expected win, but have FSU and Iowa still in the polls who won nailbiters vs. FCS teams. You push NW into the poll who needed a late field goal to beat Eastern.

I can't say I know really where teams 6-25 should be ranked, but I think you'd be better suited with some consistency in reasoning.


September 14th, 2009 at 11:27 AM ^

117 points in two games. Sheesh.

I was at the Ga Tech game. That looked to be a pretty good Clemson team minus the 1st Quarter. 12 maybe a little high for Tech but probably okay.

As others have said, I'm having trouble with the back half. Iowa, Northwestern, Tennessee are above the likes of Mizzou and Kansas? Above OU, North Carolina, and Utah? Hmmmnnn.

Take a look at Florida State, too. They trailed late in the 4th quarter, and scored twice in the last minute to beat Jacksonville State (Football Championship Subdivision) to stave off 0-2 start. This one really puzzles me.


September 14th, 2009 at 12:44 PM ^

I do not understand how Northwestern--who, in case anyone forgot, came extremely close to losing to EMU at home, the same EMU that got beat bad by Army at home--can be in the top 25. Oklahoma would murder Northwestern. Oklahoma easily took care of business with their #2 QB--they don't deserve to be dropped 5 spots, particularly when that means they fall below Northwestern and Iowa, two teams they would murder.

FSU should not be ranked. They are 1-1 and their win was a sickening squeaker against a div-2 team. Incomprehensible.

I don't think USC should be at #1. Florida is the defending champ and has done nothing to suggest they won't repeat. And, for the record, I HATE Florida. I'd have it as: FLA, TX, USC, AL. If USC is #1, OSU should be ranked a little higher. If USC can only squeak by OSU, I think that means they would be in serious trouble against TX and FLA.

And not to be a BCS homer, but Boise, BYU, and Houston are all overrated. What justifies BYU? They beat OK, a team you now claim isn't even in the top 25? Granted, I think Ok is a top 20 team, so BYU being near the top 10 isn't odd, but I think they're a little high. Boise beat Oregon (who struggled against Purdue at home) and Miami(OH)--worthy of ranking but I don't think the top 10. Houston beat OK State, what's that mean? I don't know but I think a bump from obscurity to the top 10 is a little much, as is OK State's massive drop (if you think Houston is a top 10 team, I don't see how a 20 spot drop of OK State is justified). I think Cal would beat all three of those teams.

Vandy was decent last year, I think LSU should be around #15.

Am I reading that right? Tenn moves UP two spots after losing to a rebuilding UCLA at home?

EDIT: I hope that doesn't read like I'm being a total jerk--I was just trying to be direct and not waffle. I appreciate your good work, Tim.


September 14th, 2009 at 12:56 PM ^

I think you got a little drop-happy. OK State, OU, Va Tech, and Utah should still be ranked (I'd drop Tenn., Auburn, Iowa and Northwestern). Tennessee especially has no place in the top 25 after losing at home to a very mediocre UCLA team (they, UCLA, are well coached but still very thin talent-wise).

I'd flip Florida and SC for now (though I think SC will be better by the end of the year when they finally open up the offense). Also, agree with others that Houston is way too high. Georgia didn't look good against South Carolina so I'm less impressed with the OK State win over them. That being said, I don't think beating probably the 4th best team in the Big 12 earns you a top ten ranking (especially when it took some crazy tipped interceptions to make it happen).

Finally, there is NO WAY notre dame should be ranked ahead of us. 38-34. Scoreboard.


September 14th, 2009 at 1:06 PM ^

I really do not agree with this at all. I agree where Michigan is at but if Notre Dame is still in it then Michigan should be placed above them. Ok. State should still be in it and Houston is ranked way to high because they had one of those lucky games. Florida should still be number 1 because their last game was sloppy because of the weather. But as the rest of it I kind od agree but there are some better SEC teams that deserve to be in it instead of Cincinatti. I don't know why Georgia is out of it.