Turns out Coach Chizik wasn't happy about me dumping the Tigers from my ballot last week.
Ballot and rationale after the jump:
Track 'Em Tigers Ballot - Week 3
|3||Alabama Crimson Tide||--|
|4||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||--|
|5||Boise St. Broncos||--|
|9||Michigan St. Spartans||6|
|10||Texas A&M Aggies||2|
|12||Florida St. Seminoles||-1|
|13||TCU Horned Frogs||-3|
|15||Arizona St. Sun Devils||7|
|18||South Florida Bulls||7|
|19||Virginia Tech Hokies||-6|
|20||South Carolina Gamecocks||3|
|22||California Golden Bears||--|
|23||Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets||-4|
|25||Central Florida Knights||--|
|Dropouts: Mississippi St. Bulldogs, Penn St. Nittany Lions, West Virginia Mountaineers, Ohio St. Buckeyes|
So, how has everyone been?
Good? That's good to hear.
Enjoyed the game? Awesome. It really was something, wasn't it?
Something that caused some of us skyrocketing bloodpressure, nails chewed down to stubs, bleeding ulcers, and coronary-like symptoms.
But we won, right?
Much like Pyrrhus declared, "One more such victory will undo me."
So you want to know what possessed me to throw together the slop that you see above? Fair enough. Here goes:
I'll preface this with the fact that I nearly left my top twelve teams from last week untouched. No, not out of laziness -- rather, I couldn't see too much of a need to mess around with wholly half of my list, when none of them had lost (or in some cases, even played).
Ultimately, though, I realized that: 1) it'd make for a fairly boring update ("Here's my ballot -- no need to tell me how awesome I am...I already know!"); and 2) much like anything in life, I could find enough reasons to start picking, once I looked a little closer.
1. Oklahoma - There may be some question as to why LSU or Alabama didn't leapfrog them to the top spot. They haven't lost -- and didn't play last week -- and I'm really loathe to punish teams in the upper echelons until someone gives me a clear, compelling case to unseat them. Here follow huge promises to lay the wood to OU if they don't beat the tar out of Florida State (and trust me...if I do so, it won't just be for your sake, as I really dislike the 'Noles).
2. LSU - Northwestern State University isn't the slightly less affluent cousin of Northwestern University, so maybe this isn't quite the measuring stick that we need to determine exactly how good LSU really is -- a question that persists, despite two victories. You know who I blame? The amateurs that do polls. Seriously. ...So, in the mean time, we'll just need to consider this a tune-up that serves almost as good as OU's bye week. Again, they'll be punished accordingly, should they fail to send Quasimullen and his frighteningly proficient backfield to a loss.
3. Alabama - While Alabama put a bit of a whooping on Penn State, in doing so they overlooked their own fortuitous case of spotting in favor of nitpicking one in Auburn's game (scroll to the bottom and check out what our adoring brethren opted to do with their time following a road victory against a traditional powerhouse). That aside, the offensive line is going to have to bring its A-game against an SEC opponent before I can declare this team better than either of the two ranked above them. While this isn't to say that I don't think it'll happen, I know that to be here later in the season, they'll need a "wow"-level game out of them. I haven't seen that game yet.
(P.S. - RE: Auburn:
Auburn: The Plainsmen edge out the Bullies thanks to an interception returned for a touchdown after a ball careened off an Auburn DB's helmet who was looking in the wrong direction and a goal line stand inches short of a touchdown when Chris Relf botched the option by not pitching to the trailing back who could have strolled into the end zone with a four-pronged walker. You just cannot make this stuff up, folks. Gene Chizik ought to be in the business of buying lottery tickets. I'll restate my previous position: Auburn is not a good football team, they will play poorly, they will win anyway. They'll take Clemson down next weekend in another ugly exhibition as well, who almost fell to mighty Wofford this past weekend.
My response. Love, AU Tiger)
11, 12, 13. Oregon, Florida State, TCU - All took small drops to accommodate...
8, 9, 10. Wisconsin, Michigan State, Texas A&M - To explain this apparent breach in reason, here goes: 1) Wisconsin actually beat a BCS conference team, which is a lot better than the other three teams can say; 2) while Michigan State didn't exactly play a world-beater, they've looked like a team that's sharpening its knife, biding its time for in-conference play to begin; and 3) some folks thought that I had Texas A&M a bit undervalued, while I had Oregon and TCU overrated -- this is to correct that.
14, 15. Florida, Arizona State - Both of these teams impressed me this past week, so they get minor promotions. Metaphorically speaking, they're still going to have to answer phones, straighten up the magazines in the reception area, and wash their own dishes in the breakroom....but they'll get an extra $20 or so a month, and isn't it really the gesture that matters more than anything else?
16. Nebraska - Husker-du, Husker-DON'T-have-difficulties-in-putting-down-Fresno-State-and-expect-it-to-go-unnoticed-because-really-it's-as-noticeable-as-Bo-Pelini's-throbbing-temple-and-under-medicated-anger-issues.
17. Auburn - HERE we are. SBNation is a fine wonderful network with outstanding tools for its contributors, that only occasionally cause a hiccup and omit a team from my ballot and posting, thus leading me to discuss them last week as if I had REALLY dropped them from my ballot. I mean SERIOUSLY.
(/waiting for certain members of the orange-and-blue Gestapo to whisk me away in the dead of night for daring to speak out against Roof's defensive regime.)
19. Virginia Tech - The Pirates may be giant-killers, but C-USA defense is C-USA defense. Yes, South Carolina nearly got their hides tanned by ECU, but they also came back to hang a total of fifty-six points on the pirates of the purple pants while escaping said tanning. Tech, not so much. And here we are.
20. South Carolina - I could lie and tell you that His Brahsome-ness' triumph over the Georgia HairyUgaBullDAWWWWGS had nothing whatsoever to do with the little bump in the rankings, but-- well, actually, let's just stick with that.
(suppressing giggles...while feeling bad for Richt)
21. Michigan - Any tattletale who is so inclined can go dig up a wayward post I put up in the wee hours of Saturday night, that had me copping to a fondness to Michigan. And if my time on the SBNation blogs has taught me nothing else -- and it very well may not have -- it's that somebody probably already has. So, while some folks see a porous defense that tried as hard as it could to give that game away to a talented Notre Dame team....I see an inspired coach who loves what he's doing, a gifted quarterback supplemented by a passable running game and better-than-expected receivers that WANTED that game and wrenched it away from a talented Notre Dame team. In technical terms, we call that "a win." So here they are.
22. Cal - No, I was not present at their game against Colorado; and NO, I have not partaken in either school's favorite pastime (snicker, snicker). Cal is here for beating Fresno State in Week 1, and a pugnacious Colorado team that doesn't look to be the utter lump of dog offal that Dan Hawkins' teams were.
(Obligatory "For all the [REDACTED]? For ALL the [REDACTED]!" joke goes here.*)
23. Georgia Tech - Needs to play someone before I can justify keeping them ahead of a few of the teams that surpassed them.
25. Central Florida - See also: my first sentence from the Cal entry. They had as good a first week as anyone else, and they took Boston College out to the woodshed. They then proceeded to thrash BC so hard that the ensuing ruckus knocked the woodshed down about BC's collective heads. They [BC] are expected to emerge from the wreckage in time for their next game, but neither Central Florida nor I can make any promises about just what condition they might emerge in. Much like Georgia learned last year, Central Florida beats you because it loves you -- and they will beat you until you love them, damnit.
* - "Redacted" because the editors try to keep TET family-friendly, and my brand of humor has brought them enough flagged posts in my short time here.