Blog Entry

The Poll Attacks

Posted on: March 7, 2011 7:54 pm
Whitelaw Reid was the only voter who put Duke No. 1 last week. I ignored it because I'm kind. But now Whitelaw's done gone and went straight Whitelaw on us again, and I can't ignore him a second time. So welcome back to the Poll Attacks, Mr. Reid. It really has been too long.

(Details of AP ballots courtesy of

Associated Press poll: Let's make this simple and just compare two resumes blindly.

----- Team A -----

Overall record: 24-6
RPI: 6
Record against the Top 50: 6-4
Record against the Top 100: 14-5
Wins over teams ranked in the latest AP poll: 2

----- Team B -----

Overall record: 25-6
RPI: 16
Record against the Top 50: 2-4
Record against the Top 100: 8-5
Wins over teams ranked in the latest AP poll: 0

Team A is clearly more accomplished, right? Team A has a better RPI, a better record against the top 50, a better record against the top 100 and two wins over schools ranked in the latest AP poll compared to Team B's zero wins over schools ranked in the latest AP poll. Team A is North Carolina. Team B is Arizona. And their resumes aren't even close, which is why the Tar Heels are ranked sixth and the Wildcats are ranked 16th this week.

Guess who has that damn-near backwards?

Yep, Poll Attacks veteran Whitelaw Reid from The Daily Progress.

He's got Arizona ranked No. 9 and North Carolina ranked No. 15 on his ballot.

I can't make sense of it.

I bet he can't either.

Coaches poll: I doubted and discounted Cincinnati much of this season and applauded those who were with me. But at some point it's impossible to ignore the Bearcats' resume, and we reached that point over the past week when Cincinnati won at Marquette and then beat Georgetown. Yes, the win over Georgetown is a win over the Hoyas sans Chris Wright. But it's still a win that pushed the Bearcats to 24-7 and allowed them to finish sixth in a Big East conference that has seven members ranked in the latest coaches poll.

The problem?

Cincinnati isn't one of the seven.

Which is crazy considering the Bearcats have five top-25 RPI wins and zero losses outside of the top 35 of the RPI. Not to pick on Utah State, but the Aggies have zero top-25 RPI wins and a loss to Idaho (129th in the RPI), and they're ranked 17th in the coaches poll that doesn't rank UC at all. Again, that's crazy. And you'll see just how crazy next Sunday when the Bearcats get a better seed than Utah State in the NCAA tournament despite being ranked much lower in the coaches poll.

Since: Dec 10, 2008
Posted on: March 8, 2011 12:23 pm

The Poll Attacks

UNC has wins over BC and Duke. The win over BC was an impressive unwatchable game. BC held UNC to 48 points. The lowest point total UNC has had under Williams. Yet BC could not win. That speaks to the defence UNC played. They will make you alter your shot, rush it, block it or make you second guess it. It didn't matter that there was a lid on the basket UNC will make you miss your shot and then get the rebound. It also didn't matter that UNC isn't a great freethrow shootin team or that they couldn't make a field goal. They still won.
Bottom line......Right now it doesn't matter how well you score (UMD) or how great of defence you play (BC, FSU) UNC still wins. They are the hottest team in the country. I just hope they don't cool off between now and Friday. 

Since: Feb 24, 2011
Posted on: March 8, 2011 12:16 pm

The Poll Attacks

Since: Sep 22, 2006
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:53 am

The Poll Attacks

LOL at the Cincy fan ... :D ... yeah, you're 3-1 in the last three weeks of the season (and that's giving you the cripple against Georgetown).  You were 1-7 in the first 10 weeks of the season, big boy.  Give Utah State a dozen cracks at some of the sliding BE teams, or just some of the Top 50--it's a really, really mediocre year out there, have you noticed?--and they might come up 5-8 too.
I'm no Utah State fan, but I think it's a crime that Cincy will get a better seed just because of the conference they play in; hell, they played a schedule WORSE, far WORSE, than Utah State's for OOC.

Since: Jan 26, 2009
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:51 am

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The 2 most respected polls both have Utah St ranked. Kenpom has them 13th and Sagarin has them 21st. The only poll you won't find Utah St ranked in is Parrishs poll. Teams from mid-majors will always be seeded below their ranking so of course Cincinnatti will be seeded higher along with another 10 or so unranked teams. 

Since: Aug 7, 2009
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:38 am

The Poll Attacks

lol @ the lone Utah State fan. You're 1-2 against ranked teams. We were 3-1 against them in the last three weeks of the season.
We have one of the deepest benches and best defenses in the country.If SK gets minutes and Yancy keeps his head on straight, we will win. A lot.

Since: Nov 6, 2007
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:38 am

The Poll Attacks

You have proven exactly why the RPI is useless and should be done away with. Any system that ranks Utah St in the Top 25 is not a system that makes any sense.  This is a team that has not beaten a tournement team all season long has a sub 100 SOS yet they are ranked 17 in the RPI. C'mon people use your heads. Don't let a computer think for you.  

Since: Nov 6, 2007
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:30 am

The Poll Attacks

Parrish, you can't blindly compare wins against the top 100 RPI unless the teams played the same top 100 teams. A win against the team ranked 9th in the RPI is better than two wins against the 98th and 99th ranked teams. You have to actually look at where in the top 100 they fall. Those ranked in the 50-100 in the RPi  are likely non-tournnament teams. beating BC and Gonzaga is not the same as beating Duke and purdue. When you make genralizations about top 100 records you are essentially taking away the distinction, which is just dumb.  When they flash blind resumes on TV and in articles like this  it is impossible to compare with these types of stats. You can be 50-0 against the top 100 and still not beat a tournament team.

Since: Sep 3, 2009
Posted on: March 8, 2011 11:03 am

The Poll Attacks

gotta love a guy that says to get facts straight and then has incorrect facts in his rightup.  You have apples and oranges in your RPI analysis.  For BYU you include teams that were in the top 25 when BYU played them but you did not correct the stats for the other teams you referenced.
Good thing we've got the NCAA tourney so that all our prejudices are corrected on the court.

Since: Mar 21, 2009
Posted on: March 8, 2011 10:28 am

The Poll Attacks

The same cannot be said about BYU.  You should probably get your facts straight.  BYU has beaten not only SDSU twice, along with the Arizona team you mentioned, but also Utah State, they have also beaten teams that were in the top 25 when they played them, St. Marys and UNLV.  BYU is 6-0 against the CBS RPI 1-25 teams.  Kansas is 2-2, Ohio St. is 2-2, SDSU is 2-2, Duke is 2-2, North Carolina is 2-2, Purdue is 2-3 Notre Dame, the only team in the country with more 1-25 RPI wins than BYU is 7-4, Pitt is 6-3.  If you were to completely discount BYU's two wins versus SDSU they would still have more 1-25 RPI wins than almost all the teams in top ten in the current polls.  And by the way, BYU did play a Big East team early in the year, did not play well and still beat them on a neutral court.  And while that team was only South Florida it just becomes another point of misinformation that you attempt to share with the masses in your anti BYU post.

Since: Mar 21, 2009
Posted on: March 8, 2011 10:04 am

The Poll Attacks

And for the record Utah State, a very, very good team, lost to that other team from that state.

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