As y'all know by now, I adhere to a strict policy of rankings teams based on body of work. Inevitably, that produces some odd results early in the season.
For example, when a 30.5-point underdog knocks off a darkhorse national championship contender, you get a Sun Belt squad ranked in the top five. When Northwestern is the only team to have beaten two foes from AQ conferences, you get the Wildcats ranked ahead of USC and South Carolina and Texas. And on and on.
I not only welcome comments on anything I write, but I encourage them as well. If you have any thoughts on my ballot, I'd love to hear them. Just keep in mind that my rankings tend to fluctuate significantly, especially at this early juncture in the season.
Blatant Homerism Ballot - Week 2
|1||Alabama Crimson Tide||--|
|5||Oregon St. Beavers||--|
|10||Utah State Aggies||--|
|13||Mississippi St. Bulldogs||--|
|14||Iowa St. Cyclones||2|
|15||South Carolina Gamecocks||-12|
|16||Virginia Tech Hokies||--|
|17||Michigan St. Spartans||-12|
|18||Kansas St. Wildcats||--|
|19||Arizona St. Sun Devils||--|
|20||Wake Forest Demon Deacons||--|
|22||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||-11|
|23||Ohio St. Buckeyes||-1|
|Dropouts: Nevada Wolf Pack, Miami Hurricanes, BYU Cougars, Louisville Cardinals, West Virginia Mountaineers, Nebraska Cornhuskers, Iowa Hawkeyes, Baylor Bears, Oregon Ducks, Oklahoma Sooners|
SB Nation BlogPoll College Football Top 25 Rankings »
A few notes and observations:
*With this kind of ranking system, you have to keep in mind that teams often move up and down as much because of what other teams do as what they do. Ohio tumbled this week following a second Penn State loss, for instance. Clemson drops 10 spots when a tight win against Auburn no longers looks quite so impressive.
*If I'm doing "power rankings," Georgia makes a material move up this week. That was an impressive performance Saturday night against Missouri, especially give the suspensions on D. Aaron Murray doesn't make it into the conversation about the country's best quarterbacks very often, but he definitely deserves a spot.
*Speaking of which, as great as USC's offensive weapons are, give me LSU as the nation's No. 2 team. The Tigers play with such an impressive level of physicality on both sides of the ball.
*How bad must Rick Neuheisel have been at UCLA? The Bruins' win over Nebraska last night was the kind of game where they would have rolled over under Pistol Rick.
*They were playing some inspired football out in Arizona this weekend.
*Sorry, Sooner Nation, but no way am I ranking OU yet.
Props. I might quibble with your rankings a little bit (I'd reverse ULM, OSU and UCLA), but this is the way they should be done. Rank based on what we've seen, not on preseason guesswork rankings.
I love OU, but they haven't earned their way into the rankings yet. A victory vs. KSU (even an ugly one) will change that, obviously.
Thanks so much for the feedback, guys.
One thing to keep in mind is that my goal here is to rank teams based on achievement. At this point, that requires some discretion on my part as to the quality of opponent. I'm fine with that - it's only the second week of the season, after all. As the season progresses and we get more data about teams' levels of strength, I attempt to adjust all rankings accordingly based on quality of competition.
For instance, note that I dropped Clemson 10 spots this week. The Tigers' win in the opener over Auburn no longer looks as impressive as it did a week ago, so I made the proper adjustment. Same goes for Ohio.
Your ranking system is at best as flawed as any other. From that perspective i have no problem with it. It seems you are trying to treat all teams equal, but to be impressed with ULM beating Arkansas, you are giving into the popular notion that Arkansas is one of the best teams out there. Why not rank based on point differential if all teams are equal to start the season?
@ryanoudoak The assumption that he is allowed to use popular notion of a team's opponent when they win is unavoidable. Otherwise, you have 120 anonymous teams that have each played 2 games. What you would get is approximately 40 good teams, 40 'meh' teams, and 40 teams that appear to suck. That would be the extent of any real analysis you could draw using zero preconceived notions of any teams.I personally like the approach of ignoring a given team's reputation and only measuring it by the reputation of those they beat, following that procedure for every team. It creates a unique, quirky way of looking at something that is, quite frankly, a comically hopeless venture to begin with.