It had been my plan to get down into the nitty-gritty when casting this week’s BlogPoll ballot, but, honestly, what meaningfully changed between the time I cast the final version of last week’s ballot and the time I cast the initial version of this week’s?
The teams I had ranked second, fifth, 16th, 18th, 19th, and 25th had open dates on Saturday. The teams I had ranked first, third, fourth, sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth won over basically no one in particular by margins of 32-7, 35-7, 56-6, 45-23, 63-14, 34-7, and 45-10, respectively. No team ranked in my top thirteen lost and only one team ranked in my top 19 fell.
Consequently, there wasn’t a great deal of movement on my ballot, the first draft of which looks like this:
Oregon State made the leap from No. 22 to the newly vacated No. 14 spot after the Beavers’ 34-21 win over Cal because O.S.’s losses appear increasingly forgivable and the Beavs have a quality win (over Southern California) and are continuing to give every indication of being a solid squad.
Brigham Young earned inclusion in my top 25 by beating Air Force to add a meaningful victory to the Cougars’ otherwise largely empty 10-1 record. Naturally, B.Y.U. will have the chance to prove itself against Utah.
Between those two teams I arrayed a series of more or less interchangeable 7-3 teams from the A.C.C. Against my better judgment, I gave the highest ranking to No. 20 Maryland, which beat No. 21 North Carolina, which beat No. 22 Georgia Tech, which beat No. 23 Boston College, which beat the Florida State team that beat No. 24 Miami (Florida).
The ‘Noles ended up as the odd man out, despite having defeated the ‘Canes, because of F.S.U.’s weak collection of scalps outside of Miami’s, but I could be persuaded that I ought to rank the Hurricanes 25th and the Seminoles 24th. I could also be convinced that Oregon belongs in there somewhere, as well.
Trying to choose among the A.C.C. teams clustered together in the twenties is as difficult as trying to choose between Colonel Wilma Deering and Princess Ardala, except that the Atlantic and Coastal Divisions both present markedly less attractive alternatives than the choice of smoking hot outer space chicks faced by Buck Rogers.
I dropped L.S.U. in spite of the Bayou Bengals’ win because, if you need a furious rally to beat Troy at home, you’re not a top 25 team.
I watched the Ball State-Miami (Ohio) game on Tuesday, the Central Michigan-Northern Illinois game on Wednesday, and the Miami (Florida)-Virginia Tech game on Thursday. On Saturday, I watched all of the Georgia-Auburn game and parts of the Kentucky-Vanderbilt and Boston College-Florida State games.
I’ll be revisiting and (likely) revising that ballot between now and the Wednesday morning deadline, so your feedback is sought earnestly and would be appreciated greatly. Let me know what you think.