17 November 2008
The week's beauty contest is over and Bama is still hanging on at the top. It is becoming more and more clear that voters are more interested in seeing points scored than in actually seeing games won, as Florida gained ground on both Alabama and Texas Tech. It seems as though folks have conveniently forgotten that while Gators have certainly looked impressive with Tim Tebow still throwing TD passes in the fourth quarter of games that are separated by four touchdowns, the Gators also lost a game to a team that is not ranked in the BCS top 25.
Thankfully there is some sanity among the voters, so Florida hasn't made up enough ground to actually crack the top two and potentially keep an undefeated BCS conference school out of the championship game. If the Gators truly are better than Alabama they will have their chance to prove it on December 6. Until then, judge a common opponent:
Alabama 24 Ole Miss 20
Florida 30 Ole Miss 31
It seems like a no-brainer, but obviously not.
Anyway, here's the top five in the BCS Standings:
1. Alabama (11-0) - .978
2. Texas Tech (10-0) - .969
3. Texas (10-1) - .891
4. Florida (9-1) - .875
5. Oklahoma (9-1) - .838
Both Alabama and Texas Tech lost a few points, but the difference is essentially the same. Both schools still control their own destiny, with Texas Tech possibly meeting theirs this Saturday in Norman, Oklahoma.
The individual breakdown is:
Bama is still atop the ESPN/USA Today poll, earning 45 of the 61 first place votes. Texas Tech has 15, and Florida has the last one. We don't know who voted for who, but we do know that Urban Meyer has a vote. Regardless, Bama and Florida each took one first place vote from Texas Tech.
In all Bama earned 1,508 of the possible 1,525 voter points, giving the Tide a BCS score of .9889.
Bama is also ranked #1 in the Harris Interactive poll, garnering 80 of the 113 first place votes. Texas Tech has 32, and Florida has one. Texas Tech lost six first place votes (I guess they looked particularly bad in an off week), with Bama picking up five of them.
Bama earned 2,789 of the 2,850 voter points, Bama's BCS score from here is .9873.
Bama sits at #2 in the computer polls, with Texas Tech taking the top spot here. Bama was #1 in both the Anderson & Hester and Billingsley Report.
Somehow the Colley Matrix folks have Bama at #4, behind both Texas and Florida, as well as Texas Tech. Again, Texas and Florida have losses, which you would think would matter to a computer, but I guess not.
The folks at the Massey Ratings haven't published their poll yet, but we know from the BCS Standings that Bama is third in their poll. Texas Tech was first last week, with Bama second, and Texas third. We don't know if Texas, Utah, Oklahoma, or Florida jumped the Tide, but anyone other than undefeated Utah would be sad.
In the Sagarin Ratings the Tide comes in at #2, behind Texas Tech. Again, the BCS only uses the "Elo-Chess" portion of the Sagarin Ratings, because all other parts Sagarin's formula take margin of victory into account. In the pure Sagarin Ratings Bama ranks fifth, behind (in order) Texas, Texas Tech, Florida, and USC. That would be why they don't use the overall Sagarin Rating.
In the final computer poll, the Wolfe Rankings Bama comes in at #2. This one is ridiculously close, with Texas Tech at 10.203 and Bama at 10.202. That .001 difference is the difference between Alabama and Texas Tech being tied at #1 in the computers.
Again, I have no beef with anyone rating Texas Tech at #1, they've played against a tough schedule in a big conference, and have earned all of their #1 votes. I just think that it is funny that things are that close.
Things will change considerably after this coming weekend. If Texas Tech goes to Oklahoma and wins, I fully expect that the Red Raiders will jump idle Alabama into #1. If Oklahoma wins, they could conceivably jump over Texas (who beat them) and Florida (who might score 100 against The Citadel).
If Oklahoma wins it will become a BCS nightmare, with five BCS conference teams in the top ten having one loss. Throw in the fact that there are three non-BCS conference teams that are undefeated, and you get a good old fashioned controversy.
For the record, "non-BCS" means that the conference does not get an automatic berth into a BCS Bowl.
Now for the fun part... putting names along with votes. The AP Poll actually lets it be known who voted for who, and here's how those folks broke things down:
Alabama is at #1, with Texas Tech at #2, Florida at #3, Texas at #4, and Oklahoma at #5.
The Tide has 42 first place votes, Texas Tech 21, and Florida two. I'll call those two folks out in a little bit, but the bottom line here is that they both took their first place votes away from an Alabama team that beat Mississippi State by 25 points and rewarded Florida for taking advantage of South Carolina turnovers.
Here are the 42 voters who have Bama at #1:
- Dothan (AL) Eagle, Doug Segrest
- Birmingham (AL) News, Anthony Gimino
- Tucson (AZ) Citizen, Tom Murphy
- Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Kevin Pearson
- Riverside (CA) Press-Enterprise, Ray Ratto
- San Francisco (CA) Chronicle, Jake Schaller
- Colorado Springs (CO) Gazette, John Silver
- Journal Inquirer (CT), Robbie Andreu
- Gainesville (FL) Sun, Jim Lamar
- Tallahassee (FL) Democrat, Fred Lewis
- Honolulu (HI) Advertiser, Mike Prater
- Idaho Statesman, Herb Gould
- Chicago (IL) Sun Times, Mark Tupper
- Decatur (IL) Herald, Eric Hanson
- South Bend (IN) Tribune, Kent Taylor
- WAVE-3 (KY), Steve Conroy
- Boston (MA) Herald, Joe Rexrode
- Lansing (MI) State Jourdnal, Marcus Fuller
- St. Paul (MN) Pioneer, Jim Mashek
- Sun Herald (MS), Aditi Kinkhabwala
- Bergen (NJ) Record, Joe Giglio
- Raleigh (NC) News & Observer, Kirk Herbstreit
- WBNS-AM Columbus (OH), Matt McCoy
- WVTN-AM Columbus (OH), Myron Patton
- KOKH-TV Oklahoma City (OK), Mike Strain
- Tulsa (OK) Wolrd, Ray Fittipaldo
- Pittsburgh (PA) Post, Jeff McLane -
Philadelphia (PA) Inquirer, Joe Person
- The State (SC), Maurice Patton
- The Tennesseean, Bob Hammond
- Laramie (WY) Boomerang, Stewart Mandel
- SI.com, Randy Rosetta
- Baton Rouge (LA) Advocate, Barker Davis
- Washington (DC) Times, Mike DeArmond
- Kansas City (MO) Star, Steve Sipple
- Lincoln (NE) Star Journal, Bill Cole
- Winston-Salem (NC) Journal, Jeff White
- Richmond (VA) Times, John Hunt
- The Oregonian, Mark Anderson
- Las Vegas (NV) Review-Journal, Tom Mulhern
- Wisconsin State Journal, Mitch Vingle
- Charleston (WV) Gazette
The folks who had the Tide at #2:
Adam Van Brimmer
- Savannah (GA) Morning News, Brett McMurphy
- Tampa (FL) Tribune, Craig James
- ABC, Jason Frankchuck
- Provo (UT) Daily Herald, Eric Page
- Quad City (IA) Times, Tom Keegan
- Lawrence (KS) Journal, Glenn Guilbeau
- Gannet (LA) News Service, Randy Harrison
- Albuquerque (NM) Journal, Jimmy Burch
- Fort Worth (TX) Star, Joseph Duarte
- Houston (TX) Chronicle, Molly Yanity
- Seattle (WA) Post Intelligence, Tom Hart
- CBS Sports Net, Pete DiPrimio
- Ft. Wayne (IN) News, Sal Interdonato
- Middletown (NY) Record, Brett Bloomquist -
El Paso (TX) Times, Chris Fowler
- ESPN, Doug Lesmerises
- Cleveland (OH) Plain Dealer, John Heuser
- The Ann Arbor (MI) News, Kirk Bohls
- Austin (TX) American Statesman, Mike Cedie
- WREG-TV Memphis (TN), Taylor Zarzour
- WPTF-AM - Raleigh (NC), Scott Wolf
- Los Angeles (CA) Daily News
Wolf dropped Bama from #1 to #2, and replaced them with Florida. I guess it's the folks in California that just don't get it... Jon Wilner
of the San Jose (CA) Mercury News has Bama at #3. His number one is Florida, with Texas at #2. Texas Tech, who beat Texas, resides at #4. He's had the worst ballot in the nation for several weeks running, and he'll have it again this week.
Maurice Patton of the Tennesseean will run these guys a close second. While Bama appreciates his #1 vote, he follows the Tide with Oklahoma, Florida, and then Texas Tech. Texas, who beat Oklahoma, comes in at #6 in his poll, also behind USC. Yikes.
The best part about all of this is that Bama doesn't really need to worry. If the Tide can get through Auburn, Florida, and then whoever in the Championship game, they will be National Champions. But that's getting ahead of myself. Bama is off this weekend before looking to end the streak
Auburn needs a win against Bama to not only derail the Tide's National Title hopes, but also to become bowl eligible - likely in Birmingham's Papa John's Bowl. The Tigers fell short at home against Georgia on Saturday, but looked a little better doing it. They will doubtless be fired up and ready to go, so Bama needs to bring its "A" game.
That game is likely to kick off at 2:30 on CBS, though 11:00 a.m. on CBS (they have a double header that weekend) and 6:45 on ESPN are both still possibilities. My bet is on 2:30, but we'll let you know for sure when they announce it.