Alright folks-- here's my Week 2 ballot in the SBNation BlogPoll. (I think they're calling this "Week 3" at SBNation, which is kind of silly.) Remember, I'm resume polling, according to the following three rules:
Rule #1: I make exceptions to all of the following rules, as I see fit, except for Rule #2. Rule #2: for at least one week, the winner of a game must outrank the loser of the same game. Rule #3A: We cannot measure a team’s quality until it beats a quality opponent. (I understand that the "quality opponent" is subjective, and I’ve gotten over it. So should you.) Rule #3B: Beating a 2A team is usually a meaningless exercise.
Commentary follows the ballot, below.
<!-- SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 Ballot -->
The Purple Wimple Ballot - Week 3
|2||South Carolina Gamecocks||12|
|4||Ohio St. Buckeyes||--|
|7||Alabama Crimson Tide||--|
|8||East Carolina Pirates||4|
|11||Texas Tech Red Raiders||5|
|14||Michigan St. Spartans||-1|
|15||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||--|
|20||Boise St. Broncos||-19|
|21||Fresno St. Bulldogs||-17|
|22||TCU Horned Frogs||-19|
|23||Air Force Falcons||--|
|25||California Golden Bears||--|
|Dropouts: Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Maryland Terrapins, Iowa St. Cyclones, Virginia Tech Hokies, BYU Cougars, Kansas St. Wildcats, Clemson Tigers, Northwestern Wildcats, Minnesota Golden Gophers|
SB Nation BlogPoll College Football Top 25 Rankings "
We have only two games' data from which to rank 120 teams, and many of those are 1A v. 2A, which are irrelevant (see Rule #3). So I apply a few filters before even trying to rank the teams. First, dismiss the teams that are presently 0-2, and also those that are 1-1, but have failed to beat a 1A opponent. Goodbye, Miami, Penn State, Florida State, Pitt, Georgia Tech, South Florida, Cincinnati, Navy, and about 40 others. Beat somebody in D-1A, and you'll be back in consideration.
Next, I considered the 1-1 teams that have beaten a 1A team. A few of these almost made my Week 2 ballot: I consider BYU, Kansas, Notre Dame, Iowa State, and Hawaii to have beaten a quality 1A opponent. (Don't laugh-- Army goes bowling this season, and Hawaii was-- eleven?-- timezones away from its home field. That's not a bad win.)
Third, what of the 2-0 teams that had played only one 1A foe? There are 23 of these this week, and I consider only four of them worth a top-25 ranking: TCU, Air Force, Temple, and Cal. They are my #22 through #25 teams. For you knee-jerk fans who are scratching your heads right now, saying Temple, consider this: Villanova won the 2A playoff and was one of Temple's three losses last season, and has an open invitation to join the Big East in football. Temple win over them this year is a higher quality win than Florida's over Miami (Oh) or Alabama's over San Jose State.
Next, I ranked those teams who have beaten two 1A foes-- there are only 19 of them so far, and of them I believe Michigan has the best skins on its wall to date: Connecticut's and Notre Dame's. Finally, I inserted a couple teams that have yet to play a second game, but had a very impressive win: Boise State and Fresno State. They outrank the 2-0 teams who've beaten a cupcake, because I don't believe we should incentivize scheduling cupcakes.
A couple curiosities: last week only 8 teams had been on my previous ballot; this week that figure doubles. I suspect it will continue to rise as the truly dominant teams' resumes continue to build. Resume pollers's ballots usually end up looking about like the gut-call pollers's ballots by the end of the season. And how, after Oklahoma's takedown of Florida State, could anyone rank Texas higher than Oklahoma? That the coaches' and AP polls both have UT substantially higher than OU is a complete mystery to me.