Tag Archives: Coaches Poll

2013 Preseason Coaches Poll

It’s out.  Georgia’s fifth, roughly the same spot it started last season.  The Dawgs start off the season playing numbers seven and eight.  There are five SEC teams in the top ten and six in the top thirteen.

Hope I’m wrong, but I’m afraid the only parts of this exercise that’ll matter in two months will be that Ohio State and Louisville will be riding higher than they deserve off those soft schedules.


Filed under College Football

The buddy system

As deferential as Tony Barnhart can be on many issues, he’s always been credibly consistent with his criticism of the flaws in the Coaches Poll.  (If you’re a longtime reader here, no doubt you’ll remember an old Barnhart column on the subject served as the inspiration for the Mumme Poll.)

So it’s no surprise that he bats down David Cutcliffe’s suggestion that the coaches continue to have a say in the composition of the postseason field.  Nor is it a surprise that he mines the last Coaches Poll for another blatant example of a conflict of interest.

Remember that at the end of last season Northern Illinois (12-1), the MAC champ, needed to finish No. 16 or better in the final BCS Standings to earn an at-large spot, probably in the Orange Bowl. If Northern Illinois finished No. 17, then it was all but certain that No. 11 Oklahoma (10-2) would get that Orange Bowl bid as an at-large team. So every single vote counted.

An analysis of the final vote in the Coaches poll (the only one that is made public) by Steve Berkowitz of USA Today, revealed that four Big 12 coaches (Oklahoma is a member of the Big 12), including Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, either voted the Sooners No. 6 or Northern Illinois No. 24. Stoops did both.

Maybe I need to rename the MP.

Of course Barnhart can’t resist pulling a punch or two.  After reciting the usual trinity of why the Coaches Poll as it’s now configured is problematic – bias, conflicts of interest and lack of time to research the field thoroughly – plus a bonus pot shot at Junior, he thinks there should still be a place in the room for Big Game Bob’s, um, perspective.

The coaches will continue to do their poll. I like the idea of not releasing the first poll until mid-October. But that poll, and no other human polls, will be in the room with the selection committee.

I’ve already suggested putting Grant Teaff, the executive director of the AFCA, on the selection committee to represent the coaches. Teaff would get input from his coaches and meet with his board of directors before the selection process and then serve as their voice in the room.

I’m not really sure what that accomplishes.  If there’s a poll, warts and all, the committee would be able to see it without the need for Teaff’s presence.  All that’s likely to occur with him being in the room is that the coaches lobby Teaff and Teaff in turn lobbies the committee.  Is there any reason to think that, behind closed doors, he would serve as an effective filter of the bias and conflicts that corrupt the poll?  Given that Teaff has long fought making the Coaches Poll more transparent, I’m skeptical.

If the coaches want to make a credible pitch to be included in the discussion, they need to clean their poll up first.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Media Punditry/Foibles, Mumme Poll

Instant lack of credibility


ACC coaches are in favor of having the coaches’ poll be a part of the criteria used by the selection committee to determine the four teams in the College Football Playoff.

I can’t think of any single step the BCS poobahs could take that would more effectively undermine the new playoffs than to let the Coaches Poll back in the door.  And, yes, I say that recognizing that a few changes are being proposed.

Duke coach David Cutcliffe, serving as league coaches’ chair, told ESPN.com on Wednesday during the league’s spring meetings that his group also is in favor of having every single coach have a vote in the poll and complete transparency in the voting. They also favor doing away with a preseason poll and releasing their first poll at some point during the season — much in the way the BCS standings are released.

Whoop-dee-do.  The conflicts of interest and bias will still be there.  And giving every single coach a vote means there will be that many more coaches handing off the job to somebody else to complete.

It’s a bad idea.  I just hope it’s a nonstarter, too.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs

Others receiving votes

My favorite Coaches Poll vote this year comes from Todd Graham.

Arizona State’s Todd Graham and Arkansas State’s Gus Malzahn should lose their voting privileges, immediately and forever.

Graham voted his unranked Sun Devils 20th, even though they went 7-5, lost four of their last six and beat one team with a winning record (Arizona).

He did not vote for USC, which was also 7-5 and beat his team by three touchdowns.

In fact, ASU didn’t receive a single vote in either the AP or Harris polls, and it had just eight points in the Coaches’ poll.

Six of those eight points came from Graham. The other two? From Malzahn, who used to work for Graham.

We already know Graham’s shameless.  At least he’s consistent, though.  (The only thing that would make this situation better is if he’d negotiated a clause in his contract that got him a bonus if ASU received more than 5 points in the last regular season Coaches Poll.  And I wouldn’t put it past Graham to have done that.)


Filed under College Football

Fun and games with the Coaches Poll

I don’t see eye to eye with Dan Wetzel very much when it comes to the postseason, but with regard to the last regular season Coaches Poll balloting, he’s spot on with this observation.

This next vote is the one released for public consumption, so it will be interesting to see who’s shameless.  I expect a few, at least, to live down to expectations.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs

Answer is, “well, yeah”.

Question:  do I want to live in a world where this week’s Coaches Poll has Georgia listed five spots ahead of South Carolina?


Filed under 'Cock Envy, Georgia Football

Coaches Poll: as relevant as they wanna be.

Shorter Grant Teaff:  if outsiders can’t see eye to eye with us coaches on how awesome the Coaches Poll is, we’ll just have to take our crystal football and go home.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs