Blog Entry

The Poll Attacks

Posted on: January 16, 2012 3:29 pm
By Gary Parrish

We've got a Murray State problem that needs to be addressed.

And this is a good place to address it.

So let's do some Poll Attacks.

Associated Press poll: Louisville is 14-4 with two losses to unranked teams and zero wins over schools that are currently ranked. Take away everything you thought you knew about the Cardinals in the preseason, focus on what I just told you and then I think, you'll understand why we are no longer ranking Rick Pitino's team in the Top 25 (and one). The Cards have bad losses and no great wins to offset those losses. That's the bottom line. So Louisville does not deserve to be in the Top 25 (and one). Or 23rd in this week's AP poll.

And the Cards sure as hell don't deserve to be 10th.

But guess who has them ranked 10th?

Answer: Ron Morris.

Ron actually has Louisville 10th and Florida 11th even though both schools are 14-4 with two losses to unranked teams and zero wins over currently ranked teams. Meantime, he has Indiana 16th even though the Hoosiers are 15-3 with just one loss to an unranked team and three wins over currently ranked teams, specifically No. 2 Kentucky, No. 6 Ohio State and No. 20 Michigan. I genuinely have no idea how anybody could look at what Louisville and Florida have done and conclude it's A) worthy of a top 15 vote, or B) better than what Indiana has done.

But, somehow, Ron does.

I bet he couldn't explain why he does.

But, according to his latest ballot, he absolutely does.

Coaches poll: I don't think Murray State is one of the nation's 10 best teams.

If you do, that's fine.

I don't have an issue provided you really believe it. But what I do have an issue with is how the Racers are moving up the polls based on little more than the fact that they play in the Ohio Valley Conference and every other relevant team does not. They are advancing because they're spending each week playing grossly inferior opponents while a Big Ten team might host Ohio State one night and be at Michigan the next. Put another way, there are lots of weeks when a split should be considered a good week. But splits almost always move teams down in the polls while 2-0 weeks move folks up. And while that's somewhat OK in most cases because the power-conference schedules tend to balance themselves out over time, this simple approach to ranking creates issues when a solid team from a bad league gets involved.

That's what's happening here.

That's why the Racers are ranked 10th.

So my question is simple: When does it stop?

If Kansas loses to Baylor late Monday but then beats Texas this weekend while Murray State handles Morehead State and SIU-Edwardsville, are voters gonna move the No. 7 Jayhawks below Murray State based on the idea that KU went 1-1 while Murray State went 2-0? I hope not. Because weeks, like overall records, need context, and it's silly to continue to advance the Racers without considering the context of what their wins really show and what others' losses really mean.

That's why we've kept the Racers at No. 20.

Because that's about where they belong regardless of how many consecutive OVC schools they beat.

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:25 pm

The Poll Attacks

2nd game though

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:23 pm

The Poll Attacks

{}im a uk fan and who ever beats louisville

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:22 pm

The Poll Attacks

it was 3rd look in the bracket but that dont really matter about that too much they probably get put in same bracket again is the way espn commentators work but it will be a good game can go either way i like kentucky live in west virginia a mountaineer fan but after they got beat i was wanting too see kentucky win it it gets old see in duke and the huskys gettin in the championships year after year

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:17 pm

The Poll Attacks

exactly right on that got in confernce play today and got there tales kicked

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:15 pm

The Poll Attacks

they say 3rd rd but it was 2nd. yes they should be in top 25

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:14 pm

The Poll Attacks

100% agree with you just sayin alot of teams like murrey state and even wvu they never get no credit were credit is due just listen to a game on espn never give them no credit when there airing them

Since: Dec 8, 2011
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:13 pm

The Poll Attacks

Great article, I'm glad to see someone in the media say that Murray State doesn't belong in the top 10.  I watched them play a game against a no name team earlier this year and was not impressed at all.  They'll probably go undefeated and get praised by people like Brent Musberger and Dick Vitale.  

Louisville is in the top 25 because they're Louisville.  Remember when they were a top 10 team earlier this year and espn commentators were just amazed at how "talented" they were?  Such a joke, we find out what teams really are when conference play comes around. 

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:12 pm

The Poll Attacks

i agree with u the rankings is just a number because when it comes to tourney time the rankings never end up like they put them theres always alot of upsets every year seems too me that the higher the seeds are the more is gettin in to elite 8 and final four

Since: Mar 21, 2008
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:10 pm

The Poll Attacks

There is no reason to get all wrapped up in the polls. 

Regardless of any individuals rankings, Murray State will be in the tournament and they will deserve to be in it.  Then, plain and simple, 1st, (and only), to 6-0 will be the Champion.

NOTHING matters until MARCH.

Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 16, 2012 9:08 pm

The Poll Attacks

i think murray state should be about 27th right now how i got them ranked they will do good probably even make the ncaa tournament maybe win a few games!

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