Blogpoll Draft Ballot: Week 4

Submitted by Tim on September 28th, 2009 at 10:09 AM
Rank Team Delta
1 Alabama
2 Florida 1
3 Texas 1
4 Virginia Tech 8
5 Houston 5
6 Cincinnati
7 Boise State
8 Iowa 13
9 TCU 6
10 Southern Cal 1
11 LSU 11
12 Miami (Florida) 8
13 Oklahoma
14 Penn State 6
15 Ohio State 2
16 Oklahoma State 3
17 California 12
18 Auburn 2
19 Brigham Young 4
20 Georgia 4
21 Michigan 1
22 UCLA 5
23 Oregon
24 Georgia Tech 6
25 Missouri
Last week's ballot

Dropped Out: Mississippi (#9), Florida State (#14), Notre Dame (#25).

This week, I totally scrapped what I had before, and went by a strict-ish resume ranking. The table I used can be seen after the jump. There are some big movers.

  • Virginia Tech: They have two of the best wins in the country, plus their only loss was at a neutral site to my #1 team.
  • Houston: Knocking off a second BCS opponent (one expected to be pretty good, if not contend for a conference title) sees them jump up a bit.
  • Iowa: The win over Penn State finally gives them a victory big enough to warrant a top spot on the blogpoll. They're also one of the few teams in the country with wins over 3 BCS conference teams.
  • LSU: They also have 3 wins over BCS foes, though none as impressive as Iowa's.
  • Oklahoma State: I'm not sure how I feel about them rising. I guess the loss to Houston is a little more excusable since the Cougars are looking like legit competition so far. Oklahoma State still just has one big win over a "meh" Georgia team and then a couple cupcakes.
  • Cal: They were rocked by Oregon. Given the circumstances, I may even drop them a little closer to Oregon in the poll. However, they have two wins over BCS-level competition (as much as Maryland and Minnesota can be described as such), including one away at a sucky time for a West Coast team.

Anything else need to be explained or changed? Let me know.

Rank Team 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
1 Alabama 34-24 VT 35-7 Arkansas 40-14 Florida Int 53-7 N Texas
2 Florida 23-13 Tennessee 41-7 Kentucky 56-6 Troy 62-3 Charleston
3 Texas 34-24 Texas Tech 59-20 Monroe 41-10 Wyoming 64-7 UTEP
4 Virginia Tech 31-7 Miami 16-15 Nebraska 52-10 Marshall 24-34 Alabama
5 Houston 45-35 Oklahoma St 29-28 Texas Tech 55-7 NW St  
6 Cincinnati 47-15 Rutgers 28-18 Oregon State 28-20 Fresno State 70-3 SEMO
7 Boise State 19-8 Oregon 51-34 Fresno 49-14 BGSU 48-0 Miami OH
8 Iowa 21-10 PSU 27-17 Arizona 35-3 Iowa State 17-16 N Iowa
9 TCU 14-10 Clemson 30-14 UVA 56-21 Texas State  
10 USC 18-15 Ohio State 56-3 SJSU 27-6 Wazzou 13-16 Washington
11 LSU 31-23 Washington 30-26 Miss State 23-9 Vandy 31-3 UL Lafayette
12 Miami (FL) 34-17 Ga Tech 38-34 Florida State 7-31 Virginia Tech  
13 Oklahoma 45-0 Tulsa 64-0 Idaho State 13-14 BYU  
14 Penn State 28-7 Syracuse 31-6 Temple 31-7 Akron 10-21 Iowa
15 Ohio State 30-0 Illinois 38-0 Toledo 31-27 Navy 15-18 USC
16 Oklahoma State 24-10 Georgia 41-24 Rice 56-6 Grambling 35-45 Houston
17 Cal 35-21 Minnesota 52-13 Maryland 59-7 E Washington 3-42 Oregon
18 Auburn 41-30 West Virginia 49-24 Miss State 37-13 La Tech 54-30 Ball State
19 BYU 14-13 Oklahoma 42-23 Colorado St 54-3 Tulane 28-54 Florida St
20 Georgia 41-37 So Carolina 20-17 Ariz State 52-41 Arkansas 10-24 Oklahoma St
21 Michigan 38-34 Notre Dame 31-7 W Michigan 36-33 Indiana 45-17 E Michigan
22 UCLA 19-15 Tennessee 23-9 Kansas State 33-14 San Diego St  
23 Oregon 42-3 Cal 31-24 Utah 38-36 Purdue 8-19 Boise
24 Georgia Tech 24-7 No Carolina 30-27 Clemson 37-17 Jax State 17-33 Miami FL
25 Missouri 37-9 Illinois 31-21 Nevada 27-20 BGSU 52-12 Furman
  Ole Miss 45-14 Memphis 52-6 SE Louisiana 10-16 So Carolina  
  Nebraska 55-0 UL Lafayette 49-3 Florida Atl 38-9 Ark St 15-16 VT
  Kansas 35-28 So Miss 44-16 Duke 34-7 UTEP 49-3 Northern Co
  Notre Dame 35-0 Nevada 33-30 Michigan St 24-21 Purdue 34-38 Michigan



September 28th, 2009 at 10:25 AM ^

OSU moves down after the thumping they put on Illinois. Same for Ga Tech - Beat a ranked opponent and get lowered. I guess since you scrapped last poll and started from scratch, none of that matters, though.

Overall seems pretty good. Mizzou getting some love, even.


September 28th, 2009 at 11:34 AM ^

Agree with Phil- how does beating a ranked team get you dropped 6 places for GT? Also, I think UO should be higher as they lost a close game at Boise State to open the year and just throttled at top 5 team. They've also beaten a very good Utah squad and a bottom of the pack Big Ten squad (Purdue). Their resume is essentially the same as VA Tech's.

VA Tech: L: Alabama (Top 5 team) W: Miami (T10, wins looking shakier by the week, beat two above average ACC squads), Marshall (CUSA middle of the pack), Nebraska (Probable Big 12 North Champion, but still not really much more than a top 20 team, definately not superior to OSU, OU, Texas and probably texas tech as well)

Oregon: L: Boise State (Top 5 Team in every poll but yours) W: Cal (T10, probably better than Miami), Purdue (Big Ten Bottom of the pack, certainly a tougher game than Marshall), Utah (will likely be a top 20 team before year is over; physically beasted all over Alabama last year on a neutral field).

I would argue those resumes are almost identical yet you have them over 20 spots apart (bias from Blount incident?). I fail to see how VA Tech has looked THAT much better than Oregon, other than the obvious margin of victory metric against Purdue, who I would argue is significantly better than Marshall anyway.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:29 AM ^

Ok State being so high and BYU

I really don't think that BYU should be ranked anywhere near the top 25.

When you barely beat OU without their #1 player and then lay an egg against FSU who hasn't beaten anyone besides BYU well.... I'm sorry but that seems a bit wrong.

I think that this early in the season if you are undefeated you should be ahead of anyone who has 1 loss. Wins are wins and we are 4-0. It hasn't always looked pretty but I think that you have to put Michigan higher.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:38 AM ^

"A win is a win" is an old cliché, but I think it only applies in the final poll. You have to consider who someone beat, and how they did it. A 3-1 team with a close loss to a highly-ranked opponent is better than a 4-0 team that plays a weak schedule.

Michigan has yet to prove that it deserves to be ranked higher. Its only signature win is against a suspect Notre Dame team that struggled to beat MSU and Purdue. I was as pumped by the ND win as anybody, but realistically the Wolverines are very vulnerable.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:33 AM ^

Iowa ranked at 8? Hmmmmm...don't know about that one. Iowa's ranking is based on the fact that they knocked off proverbially over-ranked Penn State, a program which gets ranked favorably way above where they should really be - just like ND. Don't know if it is love for Joe Pa or what, but I don't get it. Penn State is a weaker iteration of a team that was crushed by USC last year. PSU's schedule is a freaking joke. Iowa should have lost to Iowa State. Mid to lower teens is where I would put them, along with PSU.


September 28th, 2009 at 12:43 PM ^

If their defense is as good as it looks, they can play with anyone in the country. But, I don't think that they are the best team in the big 10. At this point the rankings still don't mean much, but the placement does matter for what happens down the road. I agree with all those stating Oregon must be ahead of Cal. For that matter, based on resume, it appears that both Oregon and Boise deserve a top 10 ranking over a team like USC who lost to unranked Washington.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:35 AM ^

Yes head to head is only one piece of evidence, but 42-3 is a pretty damning piece of evidence for Cal. Their other wins are not so great that it should override a 39 point loss. The Maryland win means nothing, Minnesota is a middle of the pack Big Ten team. Oregon looked horrible offensively against Boise, but did hold a top ten team to their lowest output of the year.
Oregon's placement makes sense, but there's no way that Cal should be ahead of them.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:45 AM ^

I agree with this, and my undergrad degree is from Cal. Oregon completely controlled every phase of the game. There was nothing fluky about it: Oregon's offense finally played up to its preseason billing, and the defense has played well all year. As for Cal's other wins, Minnesota is nothing special and Maryland is probably the worst team in any BCS conference.

SD Go Blue

September 28th, 2009 at 10:41 AM ^

I just don't understand Cal being ahead of Oregon. Oregon's only loss is to a top 10 team. They absolutely spanked Cal. It seems to me Oregon has to be ranked ahead of Cal.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:41 AM ^

W -- CAL (3-1), Utah (3-1), Purdue (1-3)
L -- @#7 Boise St (by 11)

W -- @Minn (3-1), Maryland (1-3)
L -- @#23 Oregon (by 39)

Oregon *destroyed* Cal head-to-head. Oregon has "better" wins -- Cal and Utah vs. at Minnesota. Oregon has "better" losses -- reasonably close at 4-0 Boise State vs. uncompetitive at Oregon.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:45 AM ^

LSU looked pretty bad against Mississippi St. and were it not for a goal line stand would have lost. They also should have lost to Washington to start the year. I don't think they did anything to deserve moving up eleven spots.

Also Cal, that was just a horrible loss to an average to poor Oregon team, I don't think I'd even have them rated. Just in my opinion.


September 28th, 2009 at 10:53 AM ^

Oklahoma -- 45-0 v. Tulsa (who has beaten no one of significance)
Oklahoma State -- 24-10 v. #20 Georgia

Oklahoma -- 14-13 v. #19 BYU (3-1)
Oklahoma State -- 45-35 v. #5 Houston (4-0)

The losses are comparable. But unless/until Oklahoma beats Miami this week, I don't understand how their resume pushes them above Oklahoma State.

One of the lasting lessons of this decade should be to disregard Oklahoma style points.

Undefeated dre…

September 28th, 2009 at 10:55 AM ^

Agree with all who say Oregon > Cal.

If Nebraska's only loss is by 1 point to the #4 team, they should be higher.

You could also consider putting South Carolina at the bottom of the poll; only loss is to Georgia. Maybe drop Miami a few points, and then put South Carolina in ahead of Georgia Tech?

Number 7

September 28th, 2009 at 11:32 AM ^

1) What everybody else said about Cal-Oregon

2) I'd flip Ohio State and Penn State. Can't separate one from the other in their losses, but back-to-back shutouts against two decent teams is better than 3 28-7 wins against more middling opposition (and the Navy game is ancient history).

3) Nebraska deserves better. Not sure why UCLA's 3-0 is all that more impressive than, say, Indiana's (last week, that is). They could enter the discussion soon, but I'd take the Huskers, loss and all, over the Bruins (from which I earned my grad degree -- so reverse homerism in effect).

4) If you must keep UCLA on the list at say #25, I'd slide Mizzou off. Their Illinois win loses a little luster after having seen the OSU-Ill game. (UofI is still better-than-middling, per #2, but not by much). Kansas may have a better case than either Missouri or UCLA. At any rate, wasting pixels over who should be #25 is a bit like the way NBA teams scheme and manouever to sign as their 12 man, who then averages 2 minutes of garbage time again.


September 28th, 2009 at 11:35 AM ^

South Carolina probably deserves a ranking.
PSU ahead of OSU is kind of wrong.
Oregon HAS to be ahead of Cal, no excuses.

Hard ballot I suppose, you have 3 clear top teams (Florida, Texas, Alabama), 3 top mid-majors with big wins (Houston, Boise, Cinci), then a bunch of junk.

S FL Wolverine

September 28th, 2009 at 11:41 AM ^

Interesting. However, it seems to me that strict resume ranking is tough. I see some things that don't look consistent to me:

3. Texas. Other than Texas Tech, who has Texas beaten? Does their resume so far justify a top-5 ranking?
9. TCU is in the top 10 based on beating an unranked Clemson team and who else? Virginia?
11. LSU, in comparison to teams like TCU and Texas, seems to be ranked a little low to me. Win over Washington looks decent, as does win over Mississippi State. SEC wins in general are pretty impressive I think.
13. Based purely on resume, Oklahoma has not accomplished much. They lost to the only good team they played (BYU) and then blew out two cupcakes. And how are they ranked ahead of BYU?
14. Who has Penn State beaten that justifies them being ranked this high? They lost at home to the only good team they played.
21. Michigan - I'm a huge U-M fan, but I'm not sure how we justify them at #21 based on the wins accomplished. I think a 24-25 ranking is probably more in line with what we've seen from them, particularly on defense.
23. Oregon's loss to Boise is looking better and better, as are wins over Utah and Cal. And Purdue isn't that bad. This team has had a very strong SOS and deserves a higher ranking than given, IMO. I'd put them ahead of Georgia, Penn State, perhaps Oklahoma and BYU, and certainly Cal.

Ole Miss is no longer even ranked after losing to a pretty good SEC team on the road by 6 points? SC is 3-1 with a close loss to Georgia.


September 28th, 2009 at 11:50 AM ^

This isn't just a loss on the road for Cal. They got eviscerated. There is no reason whatsoever to rank Cal above Oregon when their only wins of note came against Maryland (MTSU again) and Minnesota (reasonably weak Big Ten team), while Oregon's wins include Utah and Purdue and Oregon's only loss came to a top 10 team.

Also, if this is supposed to be a resume ranking, Oklahoma should be lower, USF probably should be ranked (undefeated with a road win over a decent FSU team, while using their backup QB), and BYU probably shouldn't (by virtue of being blown out at home).


September 28th, 2009 at 11:51 AM ^

Cal's best win is a 2 TD win against a bad Big 10 team. Oregon's 3rd best win is a 2 point win against a bad Big 10 team (although I'd guess that Purdue is better than Minnesota after watching ND-Purdue.. NIU was probably a fluke).

And really, at the end of the day, Cal lost by 39 to Oregon. I mean, hell, if Oregon was 1-3, I'd still have trouble putting Cal over them (or ranking them at all)... but given that Oregon is 3-1 with one loss to a top 10 team and jolly stomped Cal? Gotta move them up. Maybe just swap them.


September 28th, 2009 at 11:56 AM ^

Ohio St should move ahead of Oklahoma, Penn State, and probably Miami. On a pure resume basis:
Okla: OSU has the better loss (USC vs. BYU), and better/comparable wins.
Penn St: OSU has the better loss (3 pts to USC vs. 11 to Iowa), and better wins (or at least equivalent)
Miami: Crushed by V-Tech. Bad loss as compared to OSU; better wins, although FSU does not impress.


September 28th, 2009 at 12:14 PM ^

Here are my two (hopefully novel) critiques: TCU & Missouri.

If we're actually going to do a resume ranking, we should judge the quality of the defeated teams by their resume as well.

TCU's best win is a close win at a decent (B/B+ quality) ACC team; coupled with wins over a very poor ACC team (0-3, including a home loss to an FCS school), and an FCS school.
Compare to Michigan, for example, which has a close home win over a decent (B/B+ quality) independent, coupled with another close win over a B10 school and two wins of MAC teams. I'm willing to give TCU some credit for going on the road to Clemson, but I'm more impressed by Michigan's win over Indiana than TCU's win over Virginia, more impressed by Michigan's victory over Western than TCU's victory over Texas State, and more impressed by Michigan's win over Eastern than TCU's...uh, bye. This is not homerism, as I think Michigan is more-or-less in the right place. I just think it's a good comparison to demonstrate that TCU hasn't earned the 14th slot.

Missouri is a team that probably does not deserve to be in the top 25. Illinois has played very poorly this season (it's lone win is over an FCS team that is downright putrid; Eastern Illinois and South Dakota State beat Illinois State by a similar margin). The close win over Bowling Green is looking worse with each other game BGSU plays (e.g. losing to Marshall, getting killed by Boise). And if we strip away Nevada's pre-season hype and just look at the results, it has been thrashed by ND, beaten soundly by Colorado State, and beaten closely by Missouri. That not only suggests that Nevada is a bad team, but is indicative of Missouri's weakness in comparison to other decent BCS programs. Among undefeated teams, I have Missouri ranked below at least Wisconsin, Kansas, and Michigan.


September 28th, 2009 at 12:52 PM ^

I'm not sure why everyone is so high on Houston. I think I must be missing something. They did beat Oklahoma State which is also in my mind overrated and clearly was overrated at number 5 earlier when Houston beat them. But other than that, I think Texas Tech is a win, but not convincing to me that it is a big enough win to put them at number 5.


September 28th, 2009 at 1:04 PM ^

I work the press box at Bowling Green during the games, so I had a first hand view of Boise (and Pat Forde who sat two seats over from me) and I saw Boise State completly manhandle BG. The offense is so explosive even without Harper. The team is just completly on another level. I personally think they could compete with any team in the nation.

And plus, they dominated an Oregon team with serious talent, took down the same Fresno team Cinci did, and dominated a MAC team that almost upset Mizzou. The only reason BG scored any of their points was because Boise had their third string in and we had our first team still playing.

Not saying they should be #1 right now, but if this year turns out being like 2007, which Stewart Mandel's SI article pointed out a lot of similarities, and every team besides them has at least one loss then I vote Boise State in NC game.

The scariest part is they only lose two starters next year, their Fullback and a corner. Everyone else is coming back next year.

I think this might be the year of the bronco.


September 28th, 2009 at 1:17 PM ^

I happen to think the AP Poll this week is pretty good all things considered. They have Iowa above Penn State and Oregon above Cal and Houston is number 12. My only beef is that I feel that USC and Ohio State deserve to be lower than Iowa as well. Va Tech is the only 1 loss team in my mind worthy of a top 10 placement at this point with the possible exception of Oregon. It doesn't seem like the loss to Washington hurt USC enough and that in turn is keeping Ohio State afloat as well.


September 28th, 2009 at 3:44 PM ^

I want Auburn up so that I can continue to rationalize this team going from an undefeated regular season to a winless one.
But Oregon over Cal is an absolute must--I understand OU above BYU given the circumstances and BYU's embarrassment against Florida State, but 42-3 is too strong to ignore.
Also ditto on above comments about USF deserving a spot. They looked good even without Grothe.


September 29th, 2009 at 5:01 AM ^

I'm a through-and-through UM guy. Class of '01, grew up in East Lansing with Maize-N-Blue parents driving me and my brothers to the season ticketed seats at Michigan Stadium. Don't discount my loyalty.

Why are we ranked?

Why are we ranked at all? I've watched every game (form overseas, no less) and we can't possibly be one of the 25 best teams in the country. I'm stoked about the 4-0 start and I think we have some great years ahead. I'm rooting for more clutch wins from this on-again, off-again team. No defense? No worries. Tate saves the day, etc. But are we really better than 90 of the 110+ teams in FBS? Are there only 20-some teams better than ours? I can't believe that's possible.