This week's Top 25:
California Golden Blogs Top 25 - Week 11
|1||Mississippi State Bulldogs||--|
|2||Florida State Seminoles||--|
|4||TCU Horned Frogs||--|
|6||Kansas State Wildcats||1|
|7||Arizona State Sun Devils||8|
|8||Alabama Crimson Tide||1|
|T-9||Michigan State Spartans||1|
|11||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||--|
|16||Ohio State Buckeyes||1|
|20||West Virginia Mountaineers||1|
|21||Marshall Thundering Herd||1|
|22||Duke Blue Devils||2|
|25||Colorado State Rams||NEW|
· Like Marshall, Nebraska's weak schedule is offset by consistently strong performances on both sides of the ball and large margins of victory. Both teams have extremely gentle schedules down the stretch and I wouldn't be surprised if both win out in the regular season.
· With competitive losses to 3 teams in my top-15, West Virginia is the only 3-loss team in my ballot.
· With a blowout loss to Florida and a loss to South Carolina, Georgia is looking increasingly suspect.
· Am I insane for keeping Alabama out of the top-10 for the second week in a row? Look at that schedule!
· Not really ballot-related, but it delights me how Bret Bielema and Arkansas keep falling painfully short of snapping the conference losing streak.
Let's compare the resume of Auburn (my 5th place team) to Oregon and TCU, the 3rd and 4th place teams with one loss.
Top 25 wins
Auburn (3): at Kansas State by 6, vs. LSU by 34, at Mississippi by 4
Oregon (2): vs. Michigan St. by 19, at UCLA by 12
TCU (2): vs. Oklahoma by 4, at West Virginia by 1
Auburn: at Mississippi St. by 15
Oregon: vs. Arizona by 7
TCU: at Baylor by 3
Objectively speaking, I think that Auburn has a better resume than either TCU or Oregon. Auburn has a higher quantity of top 25 wins, against teams generally higher in the polls, and their one loss is against the #1 team in the nation rather than teams on the fringes of the top 10. I have zero desire to see multiple SEC teams make the college football playoff. I don't think it's particularly entertaining to see a rematch of an SEC West game in January, and I'm generally tired of SEC dominance of college football. But I'm also not going to pretend that the SEC generally and the SEC West specifically isn't where the best teams in college football play right now.
I do think that most of these issues will sort themselves out with the Egg Bowl and Iron Bowl still left on the schedule. But if the goal is to pick the 4 best teams, period, then it might be hard to argue that multiple SEC teams shouldn't be in the final four.
2. Florida State's resume might be worth a reevaluation as well. The Seminoles will likely play just two games against top 25 teams all year - an overtime win over Clemson at home, and a controversial 4 point win over Notre Dame, also at home. Is it fair to reward a team for never playing a neutral or road game against a top 25 team with a spot in the playoffs? I honestly don't know the answer to that question.
I love how in the national polls Georgia got blown out - not lost to mind you but got blown out - by a terrible Florida team and only fell 8 spots. I am actually surprised Florida didn't reappear in the polls as a result. If ASU beasts ND, I'll be moving them ahead of Michigan State (not sure why I haven't already.
You'll also note that the SEC is 17 - 26 against Top 25 teams. In fact to refute this silly "SEC is so deep" thing... Tennessee, Arkansas, aTm and Vandy are 1-15 v Top 25.
I like that Atoms has Oregon #1 because I agree right now I think they'd beat any team in the country. Having said that I'm keeping FSU #1 because of their schedule and results.
I'm leaving Clemson off my ballot because their wins are so unimpressive and their losses are bad too.
atomsareenough: So, I moved Ole Miss and Arizona down several spots after their losses this week. I actually moved West Virginia up after their close loss to TCU though, because I think the Frogs are a very good team. Utah was punished lightly, Georgia was punished heavily for losing to a heretofore awful Florida team. Seriously, what happened to the Bulldogs? This was a team that completely shut out Missouri, and they let a Will Muschamp Florida team put up points left and right? That makes no sense.
Anyway, the elephant in the room here for me is the Arizona-UCLA game. Much as it pains me, I was completely wrong about that one. I was convinced that UCLA would get totally steamrolled by the Wildcats, but Arizona's offense fell completely flat against a physical UCLA defense. The Bruins seem to habitually play to the level of their opponents, but I guess they're talented enough to make it work. So, they're back on my ballot this week. I notice that Berkelium and I are both willing to give them some credit, and have ranked them in the 20s, but we both still think the Bruins are not nearly as good as Nick and FiatLux seem to think they are.
Another team there doesn't seem to be a lot of agreement on is Ohio State. FiatLux and I think they're pretty good, but Nick and Berkelium are more skeptical. I understand their skepticism based on the underwhelming nature of the Big 10 and the Buckeyes' mixed results earlier on in the season, but I think that can happen when you break in a new QB, and they are certainly rolling now. Their talent is pretty unquestionable, and they're blowing out conference foes. They deserve a good ranking in my opinion.
The only team that fell off my ballot completely this week was East Carolina. I'd initially thought to keep them at #25, but ranked teams shouldn't lose to Temple. So they were removed to make room for UCLA.
Also worth noting: The top 5 is completely unchanged this week, even though our votes were slightly different.