Sunday, October 01, 2006

CFB Hangover: I'm Wrecked!

OK, Georgia Tech is way more underrated than anyone thought (even with the game season-opening performance vs. Notre Dame)...

And Virginia Tech is way more overrated. What a classic example of riding up the rankings based on rep and the illusion of dominance based on a weak schedule. (And I 'fess up to buying into it, too.)

Well, if voters had any sense at all, they'd literally flip-flop the two. GA Tech deserves to be in the 10-20 range; VA Tech should be in 20-25.

(Would that be a precipitous fall from No. 13 into the 20s? Sure. But deserved.)

As expected, Iowa wasn't much of a match for Ohio St, even at Iowa. That should earn the Buckeyes a few more No. 1 votes.

I'm wondering if USC perhaps will lose some support (certainly any thought of voting them No. 1) after they struggled to put away Washington St?

Speaking of putting away, Florida's final score makes it look like Alabama didn't keep it close; on the contrary, it was dangerously close for way too long.

But, like Ohio St last week vs. Penn St, a defense that isn't just solid but that makes big plays is the difference between a good team and a great team.

Hot seats: Dan Hawkins, whose Colorado team lost to suddenly sizzling Missouri and fell to 0-5; John L. Smith, whose team followed up its heart-breaking loss to Notre Dame with a loss to bottom-feeding Illinois.

I'll be filing my first Top 25 poll of the week later today. Any suggestions or thoughts on big swings that should happen from last week?

Meanwhile, it's not college football, but the must-see QB start in the NFL today will be rookie Vince Young against the Cowboys. Should be VERY interesting.

-- D.S.


The heroin sheik said...

Your right about GA tech being underrated and VT being over rated. My buddy is a huge hokey fan and is convinced they will only drop to 15! I want what he is smoking. IM thinking with va tech's weak schedule they shouldnt even be ranked. Judging by how GT has been playing I think it would be foolish to not give them a chance to win the ACC this yr. I have to also agree that the gator game looked a lot less close than it really was. Why must it be so hard to be a gator fan? Why do we consistenly have to have the toughest schedule year in year out. Who else other than notre dame has to play five perennially Top 20 ranked teams? It isn't like UT, UGA, and FSU are enough but we get auburn and LSU every yr. Thank god we get kentucky and two patsies.

TJ said...

Here's my morning after top 10:

1. (2 last week) Ohio State - Finally convinced me, even though Iowa doesn't look all that good this year.
2. (1) Auburn - Not that struggling at South Carolina is bad--USC looked pretty darn scary--but it's enough to drop them below Ohio State.
3. (3) LSU - I am increasingly amazed that they lost to Auburn--if the Gators weren't playing at Auburn I'd be more afraid of LSU.
4. (4) WVU
5. (5) Michigan - Calling Iowa OSU's biggest test left looks all the more laughable today.
6. (6) Florida - My gut wants me to jump them above Michigan and WVU, but my head is just not quite convinced. A win over LSU next week and I'll swap Florida and LSU.
7. (7) Louisville
8. (8) USC -
9. (9) Texas - Not a whole lot happened this weekend to upset my top 10...
10. (-) Oregon - Except TCU lost, and Oregon looked pretty good, so... here they go.

As far as the whole 25 goes, Rutgers looks like a solid 17-19 kind of team, Georgia Tech should be up there maybe one or two spots behind Notre Dame around 15 or so, Georgia should maybe be the team between ND and GT around 14, TCU should keep a spot in the polls, but only at about 23-25, and wherever Tennessee is California should be right behind them.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

What upsets me is everyone WANTS to put Michigan at 2 because they want Ohio State/Michigan to come down to it in Novermber.

It will be a great game regardless.If both are undefeated expect Yankees/Sox times 10.

Here's my top 10:

1) Ohio State
2) Auburn
3) USC
4) Michigan
5) Florida
6) Louisville
7) WVU
8) LSU
9) Texas
10) UGA

Joe (dayton)

phil said...

Georgia Tech looked very good yesterday. I agree that they should be close to the top 10, or even in the 10 spot. I begrudingly put them ahead of my Dawgs who have not played well since the South Carolina game. I use USC's struggles to drop them to number 5. Florida and West Virginia each move up because of that. I'll keep Auburn at number 2 although they should have done a lot better against USC. Ohio State looks firm in the number 1 spot.

Maher said...


Glad you finally put OSU where they belong. I was waiting to read that struggling at USC (and almost going to OT you forgot to mention--if spurrier knew how to run the ball) was better than blowing out Iowa at home.

Maher said...


I agree with you about the Michigan hype launching them to #2

but at the same time, after watching AUB/USC pull their asses out of the fire putting UM at #2 isn't that bad of a move.

There is no #2 this year, at this point there are just a bunch of also ran's.

Precourt said...

Top 10 (I live in Gainesville)

1. OSU
2. Michigan
3. WVU
4. LSU
5. USC
6. Texas
7. Auburn
8. Florida
9. Notre Dame
10. Oregon

Anyone with UGA in top ten must still be sipping on grandpa's cough medicine. OSU and Mich have been dominant. I hate OSU and not very fond of UM right now. (ND fan) But they both have been dominant. I think LSU is gonna win in The Swamp next week. I would like to put ND higher than UF or Auburn, but don't want to hear about bias. ND "struggled" against GA Tech who all of a sudden look really good, and lost to UM who look amazing. When it seems the Top SEC teams "struggle" every week. It looks like you have a lot of Gainesville readers Dan. Quickie for life.

Chris (CT) said...

what the hell is up john l. smith slapping himself in the face? anyone else see that?

MP said...

I admit to underrating Georgia Tech and not picking them twice (and being wrong twice now) in my workplace pool. I'm picking them as often as possible now.

And sorry Michigan, but you will enter my Top 5 until you win CONVINCINGLY.

TJ said...

Chris, I'm still not convinced that Ohio State deserved to be ranked #1 until this week, but yeah, until the Michigan game it looks like they'll be the obvious #1.

Mark, about Michigan--what?

Richard said...

OK no what does everyones Heisman list look like? Mine looks like this:

1. Garrett Wolfe

2(a). Calvin Johnson

2(b). Adrian Peterson

3. James Laurinitis

4. Troy Smith

john (east lansing, mi) said...

Umm... if you were John L. Smith, isn't that the least you would do? chris ct - (Note: I have no idea what you're talking about, although I watched about half of that debacle.)

mark - I don't even get it. I was ready to rip into the entire universe for ignoring the fact that Michigan wins games without struggling, and then you come up with that. Michigan needs to win 'CONVINCINGLY' to jump over convincing winners Auburn and USC? Have you watched one second of Michigan football this year? Did you even read the CFB Scoreboard this weekend???

troy (g, f) - Thank you for joining me in my crusade against the stupidest thing I heard 20 times last week. I hope Dan is ashamed for parroting that stupid 'Iowa is OSU's biggest challenge' line, even though he was in very good company throughout the weekend (I think it'd be easier to list the talking heads who didn't repeat this popular opinion than those who did.)

Michigan shouldn't necessarily be #2 unless they produce another dominant win vs. Iowa (and obviously MSU). But there's no reason to keep them out of the Top 5, and there is no reason for USC to keep getting first-place votes. OSU is first right now, and yes, 2-5 is a mess. And WVa isn't involved.

TJ said...

VT over GT? What the hell is wrong with the coaches? Or rather: what the hell is wrong with the coaches' Sports Information guys?

Justin said...

Mark, you mean their convincing win against Vanderbilt? or the one against Central Michigan? Or maybe the convincing win against Notre Dame? Maybe the convincing win against Wisconsin? Or how about that convincing win against Minnesota?

Oh wait, Michigan has won every single game in a convincing manner? Shoot.

Having LSU over Michigan is just SECHomerism at its finest.

Here's my top 25:

1) Ohio State
2) Michigan +2
3) Auburn
4) Southern Cal -2
5) Florida
6) Texas
7) West Virginia
8) Louisville
9) Louisiana State
10) Oregon +2
11) Notre Dame +2
12) Tennessee +3
13) Georgia
14) Georgia Tech +8
15) Florida State
16) Iowa -5
17) Oklahoma +1
18) Clemson +1
19) Nebraska -2
20) California +1
21) Virginia Tech -11
22) Boise State +2
23) Missouri +2
24) Wisconsin +2
25) Wake Forest +1

Dropped Out: TCU (18), Rutgers (23)

Justin said...

PS - The reason so many other people "want" to rank Michigan second is because if you look at the undefeated teams not named Ohio State, Michigan has the most dominant wins, and no close calls. Whereas Auburn needed luck to beat LSU at home and struggled against a NOT VERY GOOD South Carolina team on the rood (but its the SEC, wah, wah) - USC hasn't beaten anyone and struggled with WSU, and WVU doesn't play anybody and looked ugly against East Carolina State.

It seems based on the teams played and the way they were played, Michigan is clearly the second best team in the country right now.

Cody said...

I agree that eveyone, especially the media, wants Michigan at #2 so there will be another #1 vs. #2 when they play Ohio St. However, after this Saturday Michigan is the only team that deserves to be in that #2 spot.

1.(1)Ohio State - Still the #1 team
2.(5)Michigan - See above comment.
3.(2)Auburn - Didn't look so good in win.
4.(3)Florida - Looked even worse in win.
5.(4)USC - See the trend?
6.(7)Texas - I debated about placing UT and LSU over WVU last week and didn't do it. This week I did.
7.(8)LSU - Looking better than Auburn right now. Big test next week.
8.(6)WVU -
9.(9)Louisville - I think they will beat WVU on November 2.
10.(-)Oregon - TCU goes out w/loss to BYU. Oregon creeps in.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Cody, Granted I agree Florida didn't look GREAT in their win over Alabama. They were still able to over come an early 10-0 Bama lead to win 28-13. Everyone is so focused on Urban Meyer's offense with Leak and Tebow, they have neglected to even mention that the Florida defense has been unbelievable and carried this team.

mat Precourt, the reason ND isn't top 10 is because they got DESTROYED at home by Michigan and needed a meltdown by Michigan State to win their game (the same MSU team that lost to Illinois)

Can you hold a grudge on Auburn and USC for keeping their games close? I don't agree. Both are environments that very tough.

I think putting Michigan at 4 is completly fair right now.

Joe (Dayton)

Precourt said...

TF - I didn't say anything about disagreeing with you haveing Michigan as number 4. Or Notre Dame in the top 10. All I said about you was UGA in the top 10 is completely off. They may be the 10th best team before the year is out, but to say they are playing like the 10th best team right now is insanity.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Agreed UGA dosen't look like a top 10 team at all.

Jen said...

Oh LEEEENNNNYYYYY! Are you back yet? Did you catch that entire game last night?

The only reason I don't want to see Michigan at #2 is exactly why everyone else wants them there: for another #1 vs #2 matchup. I think it will take away from the good ol' Ohio State-Michigan feel. I could be wrong.

Justin said...

If Washington State is a "tough environment" then Michigan going into Minnesota and winning should have been the upset of the century. Nor is South Carolina looking good at all. Compare that to Wisconsin's results against other teams - and Michigan beat them handily.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Wazzou, always gives someone a scare in Pullman, ask Oregon about that. I think it's a very spirited and tight environment unlike the hollow, massive Metrodome.

As for South Carolina, say what you want, they haven't played well, etc. But Spurrier recently switched QBs and Sevelle Newton has been great in that roll. Mark my words South Carolina will upset Tennessee, Florida, or Clemson.

Not saying Michigan isn't good they're a great team and should be undefeated going into Columbus. But using Wisconsin as a basis for how good you are is bad (their wins are over BGSU, Western Illinois, San Diego State, and Indiana; teams with a 5-9 record over Division 1A opponents)

Joe (Dayton)

Justin said...

But tf, the same things can be said about WSU (crushed by oregon, victory over Idaho, close home win versus Baylor, a 2-3 team with wins over Northwestern State and Kansas State, and losses at home to TCU and ARMY), and victory over 0-5, loss to San Jose State Stanford), and South Carolina (wins over Miss State, crushed by Georgia, wins over Wofford and Florida Atlantic - and Wofford was close)!

That is, South Carolina and Minnesota are both teams in the 50s in terms of rankings - teams that good teams beat convincingly. Washingto State is worse than that. Both USC and Auburn weren't doing their job.

And WSU gives other PAC-10 teams scares at home because the PAC-10 is terrible.

Justin said...

Oh, and about Wisconsin - you should watch that team. I saw their game against Indiana. Indiana isn't that good, sure - but Wisconsin has a solid defense and a great offensive line, and Michigan still rolled over them. Certainly more of a gut check than South Carolina or Washington State.

Unknown said...

Oh come on Dan.

"As expected" OSU wins? I won't even quote yourself in an earlier blog where you write that you expected a close game if not an upset. tsk

USC is going to have issues with Cal and Oregon, but that was expected at the start of the season.

Aside from that...Kent State!? They are being respectable this year!

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Crushed by UGA? They lost 15-0.

Listen I'm not trying to say Michigan isn't a good team. But if your going to look at a team for 1 week, instead of the body of work they have this season it's not fair.

USC has beaten Arkansas at Arkansas and Nebraska

Auburn destroyed Wazzou and beat LSU. They got a tough test with UF coming into their house in 2 weeks.

At this point saying anyone 2-6 has a good arugment to be number 2.

Unknown said...

It's hard for non-SEC fans to buy into the SEC when no team can play decent offensive football against even mediocre defenses.
USC beating Arkansas is not impressive to anyone outside the SEC.
The Nebraska win.. was solid, but not great as most folk haven't bought into the Huskers yet.

My top 5

Ohio State
Michigan -- (Impressive wins all year)
Auburn -- (The coaching matchup with USC may have been even, but the talent matchup is way slanted towards Auburn. That win was far too hard for the Tigers)
Florida -- (Dont understand the Leak haters. Very good defense)
West Virginia -- (We'll see vs Louisville)

Maher said...

John L. slapped himself in the face as a shot at Charlie Weis. Remember the MSU/ND game when Weis was crying to the refs that he got slapped in the face by a MSU player and the refs should boot him out / throw a 15yd penalty.

Trey (formerly TF) said...

Rafael Your kidding right?

LSU and Auburn made Arizona and Wazzou look like Buffalo and Ball State. Not to mention a team like Kentucky put more points on Louisville than the other three teams Louisville has played combined. Tennessee destroyed a highly ranked Cal team. Even Vandy kept the game against Michigan close until the waning moments of the 3rd quarter.

I'm not saying the SEC is infallable and that much better than everyone else. But you can't say the league hasn't looked good this year.

john (east lansing, mi) said...

Don't bring up Vandy-UMich like it was a real game. Michigan was warming up for the year and sandbagging their entire passing game so that ND would be sufficiently surprised. And they were.

If Michigan had been playing with the same game plan vs. Vandy and ND, Super Mario would have scored 4 touchdowns.

I know, you were just trying to make a point, you weren't trying to take anything away from Michigan. Except you were. I have nothing against the SEC and I'm actually gonna be very impressed if somebody (my money's on UF) makes it out alive.

But I know you were trying to compare UM's 'slow' game vs. Vandy to USC's slow game against WSU, and Auburn's almost fatally slow game against the Cocks. It doesn't work that way. Preseason football : midseason football :: apples : oranges. If Michigan struggles against Ball State, you can come back with your smarmy subtle remarks, but until then, there's no way to even pretend Michigan's wins haven't all been well in hand.

Maher said...

I'm pretty sure that Mario plays LB. Luigi was the QB and Toad was a garrett wolfe sized RB.

Justin said...

Did you watch the 18-0 game? It was a dominating performance by Georgia, who despite giving up 3 turnovers, controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides, holding the Gamecocks to less than 100 yards rushing and the game was never, ever close. Georgia was up 12-0 before South Carolina ever made it to Georgia's half of the field, and was up 15-0 in the second half, where they controlled the ball except for one South Carolina drive.

john (east lansing, mi) said...

cm - You'll figure out where Mario plays.

MP said...

All right, I apologize, Michigan fans. Let me clarify:

I'll be convinced that they're good when they beat Ohio State.


And I grew up a Michigan fan...just lost my faith.

Justin said...

Aw, so if we go undefeated and beat Ohio State, we're good? Maybe even Top 5 good? :)