Approval voting method to Mumme Poll madness

If you’re curious why we’re paring the Mumme Poll ballot down to ten teams with a single tiebreaker, this may give you a good idea:

… I also asked Thompson why the AFCA didn’t just go ahead and include all 120 FBS coaches in the poll to give every coach a voice. After all, this is a poll that, as part of the BCS rankings, helps determine which two teams play for the national championship.

He said, “For practical purposes, it’s hard to get 59 or 60 to vote each week.”

How many head coaches have the time and the resources during the regular season to research which team is the twenty-third best in the country?  Based on what a couple of former coaches had to say about the preseason vote, hardly any.

“[Preseason rankings] have one real value — it gets us all talking about it,” said College Football Hall of Famer John Robinson, one of 19 members of the Legends Poll. “But I don’t think anybody who votes on it does enough research to say specifically who is going to do what.”

That’s not a knock on the 59 head coaches who vote. Considering the limited information available at this time of year, hitting 60 percent isn’t bad. Basically, preseason magazines and last year’s memories are all the coaches have to analyze.

“You get a summer magazine, but you don’t devour it,” said former Washington coach Don James. “You focus on what is being written about your opponents. Outside of them, it’s hard to know a lot about the other teams across the country.”

It’s not much of an exaggeration to call the Coaches Poll farcical.  It’s certainly troubling that there’s so much riding on something that’s so shoddily organized.  Fix the damned thing.  And start by taking a close look at approval voting, fellas.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Approval voting method to Mumme Poll madness

  1. Erked Russell

    Fix the darn thing with a play off.

    • That only works if you go to what I call an “objective” format, such as conference champs only. If you leave the subjective element in, you’ve got the problem, whether it’s in the context of the BCS or a larger playoff.

  2. Macallanlover

    Not surprisingly, the Coach’s Poll is the weakest of the major polls. Preposterous to think HC’s have, or would, spend the time required to follow teams all over the country. I don’t think it is “fixable” if you use current coaches as balloters.

    Computer polls are also weak, but having multiple “voters helps cull out the obvious biases of any one individual. This should be the best solution but they are tainted by the input piece (garbage in, garbage out.) Left to mix & match the performances of all 120 teams as they interact, these power polls could be as close as you can get to having total objectivity for a poll. Sigh, but humans have to interject their prejudices.