Note: Clicking a team link in this blog will show you how everyone voted for that team. Clicking a voter name link will show you their ballot.
The first BCS Standings of the season are out. For those who have only been using Pollstalker to check out the AP ballots up till now, let me direct you to the BCS+AP Report. Each week, you can also use Pollstalker to compare how each component of the BCS (plus the AP Poll) ranks each team. For example, you can easily see that Alabama is ranked lower by Sagarin than any other component, or that Florida is ranked highest by Billingsley at No. 20, or you could compare Boise State’s rankings to Oregon’s in the ten different systems.
As for the AP, Pollstalker tells us that Jon Wilner is the most extreme voter this week. Nothing new there, but he outdid himself this week with 14 extreme votes and 5 near-extremes. That means he only had 6 teams on his ballot that are generally in line with the other voters. His bottom five teams (No. 21 – No. 25) are all lowest in the nation, in order: Utah, Nebraska, Missouri, West Virginia, and Oklahoma State. Sometimes being extreme can mean the voter is thinking more like the computers, without all the pre-season baggage that often comes with voters. However, a quick check of the same teams in the BCS+AP report (Utah, Nebraska, Missouri, West Virginia and Oklahoma State) shows that Wilner would also be a very extreme computer.
Another AP trend this week shows a lot more teams getting a few votes. Last week it looked like the top 25 might be getting more focused with only 32 teams getting any votes. However, with all of the recent upsets, the voters are once again struggling to fill the bottom of their ballots, and 40 teams received votes this week. 12 of those teams only received one to four votes, including some of the upset-ers like Hawaii, Kentucky, East Carolina and Washington.
The Albuquerque Journal’s Greg Archuleta has been replaced this week in the AP Poll. Rick Wright from the same newspaper is the new voter. Archuleta was at the center of the issue a few weeks ago where a technical glitch caused the AP to count his previous week’s ballot by mistake. According to the AP, that has nothing to do with the change of voters this week, which was made by the Albuquerque Journal itself.
I’ll keep the Arizona over Iowa watch going, although it seems to be a stalemate. 37 of 60 voters still have Iowa over Arizona. The worst offender is now Kirk Herbstreit who has BOTH Iowa highest at No. 6 and Arizona lowest at No. 21. I can understand why a voter might have the two teams ranked closely in either direction. After all, Arizona lost to Oregon State who just lost again on Saturday. So maybe the Wildcats should be ranked lower. However, Iowa hasn’t beaten a quality opponent yet, whereas Arizona beat…Iowa. So, to me, as long as they both have one loss, Arizona should be ranked over Iowa, and if you don’t think much of Arizona…why would you think more of Iowa? The Hawkeyes haven’t beaten a currently ranked team. Again, to add some objectivity, 4 of the 5 unbiased (meaning, not including Billingsley yet) computers rank Arizona better, which I also take into account. However, I put more emphasis on the head-to-head result because the computers don’t. Even so, they still generally think Arizona is a better team regardless of the head-to-head result.
With South Carolina losing, it has straightened out the whole Auburn over South Carolina over Alabama conundrum. Although, Bob Hammond is the only voter who still ranks Alabama over undefeated Auburn.
Enough old news… this week, 10 voters still rank Ohio State over Wisconsin after the Badger’s weekend win. Mark Anderson of the Las Vegas Review-Journal is the worst of the group with a ten-place differential. Being from Vegas, Anderson should certainly know that the 13-point Wisconsin victory more than accounts for the typical 3-point advantage given to the home team. In fact, he didn’t even drop Ohio State from his previous ranking of No. 7 after the loss. I wonder what needed to happen for Anderson to rank Wisconsin higher. To the credit of the AP, they barely have Wisconsin over Ohio State in the overall poll, but the two other human polls (the ones used by the BCS) don’t. If only we could get our hands on those ballots. In the meantime, we’ll have to assume that there are even more Coaches and Harris voters who secretly voted Ohio State over Wisconsin.