Monday, December 06, 2010

2010 BlogPoll: Final Regular Season Ballot

How fair is it to drop a team who lost a close conference championship game to a higher ranked opponent? Not at all in my book.  Most teams don't play in these games, so they stand pat on the sidelines. So yes, I'm leaving Nebraska and Florida State right where they were last week.  South Carolina does drop a little due to getting blown out by Auburn, though.  That blowout does earn Auburn a bump to #2 over TCU in my book.

Since it was a light week, not a lot of changes this week.  Virginia Tech gets a bit of a bump for their victory, while Arizona gets the boot for missing two extra points at the end of the game.  In comes USC, and I give them the edge over Hawai'i, if only for the head-to-head victory to open the season.

1 comment:

Jay said...

In response to your question, "How is it fair to drop a team in the rankings after that team loses to a higher-ranked opponent?"
(First, huge Husker fan here.)

On its face, that seems unfair - Nebraska was the lower-ranked team, so they should have lost! At least, they didn't lose any more than their rank before the game would indicate. But that reasoning is true only if the game tells us nothing more about the team. In that case, the game is "rank neutral," and the information that we get from it is the same information we had before the game. So, no new information, no new rank. But when the game gives us additional information, as the OU-NU game gave us, then it is appropriate for the team's rank to change, based on that new information. Against OU, what new information did we receive that justifies Nebraska's falling in the rankings? Well, for one, the game answered the question "What if Martinez is in the game, but is not 100%?" For that answer, look to his stat line (if you can bear it), and look at NU's offensive numbers. In sum: we were atrocious outside of several big plays. Furthermore, the game shows us what we can expect in the future, in other words, the information we got from the NU-OU game is stable: Martinez likely will not be 100%, he will likely start, and Shawn Watson likely will be the OC. Basically, nothing going forward will be different from what we saw against OU. In that respect, can you really be surprised that NU dropped in the rankings?