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California Golden Blogs College Football Top 25 Poll: Week 1

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How would the CGB writers vote if they were responsible for the national college football rankings?

So, after one week of football games in the books, how are our CGB pollsters feeling? Well, looking over our ballots, it seems there's considerable agreement on some teams, and wild disagreement about many others. I think part of this is due to methodological differences that will get smoothed out as we get more data points, but there are definitely some curiosities this week.

Before we get to individual ballots though, let's start with the overall tabulation:

SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 College Football Rankings

California Golden Blogs Top 25 - Week 1

Rank Team Delta
T-1 Ohio State Buckeyes --
T-1 Alabama Crimson Tide Arrow_up 1
3 TCU Horned Frogs Arrow_up 2
4 Baylor Bears Arrow_down 1
5 UCLA Bruins Arrow_up12
6 Notre Dame Fighting Irish Arrow_up15
7 Texas A&M Aggies NEW
8 Auburn Tigers Arrow_up 4
T-9 USC Trojans Arrow_up 1
T-9 Utah Utes NEW
11 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Arrow_down2
T-12 Oregon Ducks Arrow_down8
T-12 BYU Cougars NEW
14 Georgia Bulldogs --
T-15 Clemson Tigers Arrow_down7
T-15 Michigan State Spartans Arrow_down9
17 Boise State Broncos Arrow_down1
18 Florida State Seminoles Arrow_down11
19 Arkansas Razorbacks Arrow_up 4
20 Ole Miss Rebels --
21 Temple Owls NEW
22 Northwestern Wildcats NEW
23 Oklahoma Sooners Arrow_down1
T-24 Arizona Wildcats Arrow_down11
T-24 Duke Blue Devils NEW

Teams dropped from last week's Top 25: Arizona State Sun Devils, Wisconsin Badgers, LSU Tigers, Northern Illinois Huskies, California Golden Bears, Stanford Cardinal

Others receiving votes: South Carolina Gamecocks, Missouri Tigers, Tennessee Volunteers, California Golden Bears, Oklahoma State Cowboys, Florida Gators, LSU Tigers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Cincinnati Bearcats, Kansas State Wildcats, Wisconsin Badgers, Marshall Thundering Herd, Rutgers Scarlet Knights, Memphis Tigers, Illinois Fighting Illini, Air Force Falcons, NC State Wolfpack


There was a fair amount of agreement about the top 9 teams or so. After that, there was a big dropoff to Georgia Tech at #11 (ragnarok still hasn't ranked them at all), and then it was pretty tight the rest of the way down. Clearly, judging by the extensive "others receiving votes" list, the back end of the Top 25 is essentially a dartboard at this point. Though even I'm not quite sure about some of the names on there - Rutgers? Illinois? Air Force? Care to elaborate on those choices in the comments, guys?

It seems clear that some folks are crediting *any* FBS win at this point, and some folks are crediting blowouts regardless of the quality of opponent. It's early, so these different approaches are going to lead to some disparities until we get more of a sample. So with that in mind, some interesting odds and ends:

*Lots of disagreement on Oregon. PerryScope and mpeters10 still had them ranked highly, Nick and I had them ranked but in the middle, and the rest didn't rank them at all this week.

*Berkelium didn't rank Baylor at all, but everyone else had them in the top 10, or even the top 5.

*PerryScope is the only one holding out on Boise State.

*ragnarok is the only one still not ranking Georgia Tech. Yet he has Illinois and Florida on his ballot. Just sayin' :)

*PerryScope and I were not sufficiently convinced by the BYU Hail Mary victory against Mike Riley and Nebraska to rank the Cougars just yet. Everybody else decided to rank them, with fiatlux and Berkelium putting them in the top 7.

*Georgia, Clemson, Florida State, and Ole Miss were missing from several ballots, interestingly, despite pretty dominating wins in Week 1.

*Despite Stanford barely being ranked on our poll last week and looking awful, Berkelium, Nick, fiatlux, and ragnarok all credited Northwestern for their win against the Cardinal. PerryScope, mpeters10 and I aren't sold yet though.

Okay, let's let folks explain themselves:

Berkelium97: It's only been one week, so it's tough to read too much into these results.  Especially for teams that played...less than stellar opponents.

I'm following my traditional ranking routine where teams with the best wins are at the top of the poll.  With only one week's worth of wins, there isn't a whole lot to back up these rankings (hence Temple sitting at #8).  My results are mostly a list of teams that beat Power 5 teams followed by teams that beat non-Power 5 FBS teams, followed by a handful of teams that destroyed their FCS competition.

PerryScope: Dropped from rankings this week: Arizona State, Oklahoma State

Biggest Jump: Notre Dame (18-14) and A&M (22-18).  ND dominated Texas on the aspects of the game and the Aggies got a great upset win at home against the Sun Devils.

Biggest Drop: Wisconsin (13-21).  Not a huge deal because they played Alabama and nobody expected them to win.  I still think they have a really strong team that could potentially beat Ohio State or Michigan State later in the year.

fiatlux: OK, we all know this is going to change so I really didn't put too much thought into it. I have one rule that if you have a loss you can't be ranked if other teams don't have losses. I give more weight to road wins than home wins. More to FBS than FCS. I think Ohio State had the most impressive win of the weekend, followed by Alabama (see, I'm not anti-SEC biased!). Then Baylor... aTm... and I thought BYU's win at Nebraska was impressive in winning in a tough place on the road.

Anyway, this is all going to change [in the coming weeks].

ragnarok: With only one week's worth of results handy, there's not much to go on. To make this easy on myself (and reflecting the especially arbitrary nature of these rankings), I decided to only rank teams that beat another FBS team. Does that mean I don't think Oregon is one of the 25 best teams in the country? No, but they'll have to prove it vs. Michigan State before I decide to rank them.

The usual caveats about all this being silly and subject to wild recalculations next week all apply.

atomsareenough: I kicked Michigan State like a bad habit this week for winning ugly at Western Michigan. They were in my top 5, but now they're going to have to beat Oregon to make it back onto my poll anytime soon. I also booted Arizona State and Northern Illinois. ASU lost to Texas A&M, so the Aggies grabbed a spot at the expense of the Sun Devils. Also, the NIU Huskies won against UNLV, but only by a single score. As with Michigan State, a ranked team just shouldn't be doing that. Boise State won ugly against Washington, so I knocked them 5 spots, but I'm keeping them in the poll for now. Oregon slipped 5 spots for allowing a bunch of points to an FCS team. Arizona also slipped a bunch for its sloppy win against UTSA, but they're still clinging on for now. Notre Dame's utter domination of Texas earned them a place this week for me. Alabama took my top spot over Ohio State this week due to the quality of win, Wisconsin relative to Va Tech. UCLA moved up big time on my ballot due to Josh Rosen looking legit. Finally, I put Cal in my "wild card" #25 spot because if the defense can make some plays this year, the offense is going to make the Bears plenty scary.

mpeters10: Once we're 4 or 5 weeks into the season we'll have more of a body of work to base these on, until then my top 25 will be fairly fluid. Anyways, I jumped Ohio State ahead of TCU this week as I expected the Horned Frogs to win by a more comfortable margin at Minnesota (though Minnesota is a good team). Boise State was penalized heavily for only beating UW by 3 points. Notre Dame, Texas A&M, Utah, Clemson and BYU jumped into the rankings after impressive week one victories. LSU fell out of my top 25 because their game with McNeese State got canceled. I'm giving Oregon the benefit of the doubt by keeping them in the top 5, but that wasn't a good showing by their defense against Eastern Washington.

Here are the ballots:

CGB 2015 T25 W1