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College Football BlogPoll Week 9 Draft: A Clearer Picture

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Here are our computer rankings for the week, which serve as our draft for our ballot.  I'll give my thoughts below, and take suggestions for improvement from the crowd.  The spreadsheet is here in Excel 2007 form.

  1. TCU Horned Frogs
  2. Boise St. Broncos
  3. Oregon Ducks
  4. Utah Utes
  5. Ohio St. Buckeyes
  6. Alabama Crimson Tide
  7. Arizona Wildcats
  8. Auburn Tigers
  9. Iowa Hawkeyes
  10. Stanford Cardinal
  11. Nebraska Cornhuskers
  12. Oklahoma Sooners
  13. Nevada Wolf Pack
  14. Wisconsin Badgers
  15. LSU Tigers
  16. Michigan St. Spartans
  17. Missouri Tigers
  18. Florida St. Seminoles
  19. Central Florida Knights
  20. Mississippi St. Bulldogs
  21. South Carolina Gamecocks
  22. Oklahoma St. Cowboys
  23. Virginia Tech Hokies
  24. Arkansas Razorbacks
  25. Hawaii Warriors

Top_30_scores_week_9_medium

The top

Boise State's lackluster performance allowed TCU to take the top spot this week, as TCU's defensive metrics now exceed those of Boise.  (That, and Boise has a slightly weaker SOS.)  Oregon finally snuck ahead of Utah to break up the mid-major trifecta, though the Utah-TCU winner may likely be at the top next week. 

Ohio St., Alabama, and Arizona all edged out Auburn for one reason:  defense.  Auburn's defensive numbers just aren't good.  Granted, they've played some good offenses, but they've also allowed far more yards and points to teams than is comfortable.  Auburn will get the bump above the one-loss teams, naturally, but this is a good indication that Auburn is the most likely undefeated to be upset (outside the inevitable TCU/Utah loser, of course).  Even Oregon's defense is at least above average, which has helped them through a couple of slow starts until their offense kicked in.

A little further down

Iowa again soars higher than their W/L thanks to strong defense metrics.  The question is now: what do you do with Michigan St., Wisconsin, and Iowa?  And where are they relative to Ohio St.?

Florida St. hangs in at 18 thanks to strong defense and what was honestly a game they should have won, had they been able to handle a drop-back pass.  I'm not inclined to bump them out entirely unless there's a good argument for it.

Who's in / Who's out

There are few to consider here, but I don't have any particular problem with any of the teams currently in the top 25, either; I don't see more than maybe one or two switches here.  Teams like the N.C. State Wolfpack and the Syracuse Orange are possibilities, but who would be kicked out in favor of them?

A little side note:  between the ACC and Big East, only FSU is ranked.  Since the ACC plays a championship game, there's a very real possibility that an unranked ACC team wins their championship to face an unranked Big East team in a BCS bowl.  I'd be lying if I didn't say I wanted to see this happen.