Where’s the outrage?

So, yeah, the American Football Coaches Association has announced with great fanfare today that it’s making some changes to the Coaches’ Poll, most notably this:

Do not release the individual coach’s ‘final end of the [regular] season’ ballot. Gallup recommended the voting process remain confidential. Historically, until four years ago, the AFCA kept the ballot confidential.  (The AFCA does not restrict a coach from releasing his ballot).

The AFCA Board decided to delay the implementation of the confidential ballot for one year, until the 2010 season, to coincide with the current BCS bowl cycle.

I’m trying to work up the appropriate level of outrage over this, but I’m having trouble getting there.  Certainly, it’s a tone deaf decision in terms of public perception, but it’s not as if the coaches haven’t been above making biased voting decisions during the period when the final regular season poll ballots have been released.  None of the remaining regular season ballots were released, either.  The decision will deprive me of an annual blog post where I get to mock some of the voting, so I guess there’s that to tick me off.

That’s not to say that AFCA’s claim that this will improve the Coaches’ Poll isn’t total BS, because it is.

There is an interesting part to the press release, though.  It involves two recommendations that the folks at Gallup made that aren’t being implemented, naturally.

•    Reduce to 10 or 15 the number of teams ranked.

•    Evaluate with other shareholders in college football the value of a preseason poll.

I find those to be excellent suggestions that would improve the quality of the poll.  As we’ve learned here with the Mumme Poll voting, it’s much easier to evaluate 10-15 schools than it is 25 – and we’re not coaches who likely don’t have the time to spend evaluating that many programs every week.  And preseason polls are at best worthless and at worst a contributor to stacking the deck against schools who start out ranked lower than they should, based on their play.

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Where’s the outrage?

  1. Bulldog Bry

    Now imagine the lobbying that will go on. “Hey, Mack. Remember when we helped you out over California a few years ago? I’m still your Big 12 brother, right? Do you think you can hook me up come bid time?”
    or
    “Mark, listen, I’m not mad about the ’07 Cocktail party anymore. I was just posturing for my fans. By the way, uh, you don’t want to see Notre Dame placed any higher than they should be, do ya? Could you see it in your extremely good-natured heart to bump us up to a better ranking?”
    “Suck it, Urban”

    If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.

    • BB, my point is the coaches pull all kinds of questionable crap with public ballots already. I’m not sure how much difference this is going to make.

      • Bulldog Bry

        No, Senator. I’m agreeing with you. And now, they don’t have to answer to ANYONE. Richt made a comment about “built in accountability” in these polls. I have no doubt that he’s every bit the man we think he is. But how he and every other coach ranks other teams, including other SEC teams, will ultimately go a long way in determining who goes to BCS games and who doesn’t, and erego whether or not the SEC teams will get a big or bigger slice of the BCS money. How much more of a homer ranking will there be now that these guys KNOW they don’t have to defend their choices? This is like schools investigating their own infractions – then not having to turn it in to the NCAA. And it just pisses me off.
        +1 for that link, I had forgotten about those particular shenanigans. The links in TB’s article are gone, but didn’t Tubby vote Hawaii ahead of us?

  2. dudetheplayer

    Forgive my ignorance, but what exactly was the point in ranking the “top 25″ teams in the first place? Where did that arbitrary number (which seems to prevail in all collegiate athletics) come from?

  3. RedCrake

    Well you see Dude… A man named Steve Spurrier said it would be 25 and the Gator nation agreed and it was so.

    Because as we all know, the University of Florida invented college football circa 1990 and, thus, this is the only rational explanation.

  4. Used to be 20 (yes, I’m old, why do you ask?) and that made more sense. There simply weren’t 25 teams worthy of being ranked last year, and it showed when you looked at the bottom of the poll and tried to make a case based on resume/performance rather than reputation. I’d be more than happy to go back to 20. And every week’s vote by the coaches should be public. They still won’t be held accountable exactly, but at least we’ll know who the people are voting for Duke.

  5. Pingback: Thursday News and Notes: Coaches Poll Changes in the Air | MrSEC.com