Analyzing the AP Poll

Not intending to step on the toes fellow editor dishingoutdimes with this post, as I've kind of self appointed him as our "stats guy", but I just couldn't help myself after browsing around this morning on an incredibly interesting website Poll Speak.  I'm guessing most of you are familiar with or have at least heard of the site, but in case anyone is not I'll give you a very brief rundown.  Basically the site was created to keep the voters honest and they do that by releasing who and where the voters rank the respective teams each week.  They award Best Voter of the Week, Worst Voter of the Week, Most Extreme Voter of the Week, and so on but it's just a site where if you're a college football fanatic like myself you can waste a couple good hours. 

Now I suppose there is an argument to be made that the AP Poll is basically irrelevant as it is no longer a part of the BCS equation.  However, they do still award their own "national championship" so until that changes it would be difficult to declare them completely irrelevant.  Additionally, it is one of the only college football polls that releases their voting information so by that fact alone they remain relevant because it gives all of us something to talk about all week in between games. 

Check out some of the votes and voters who stood out to me after the jump.

Let me start by saying, I'm interested to hear from you guys to see if this is something you'd like to see more of or if you think it's a waste of time.  So if this is something you'd like to see on a regular basis, just let me know in the comments.  If it's not something you think you'd like to read, feel free to let me know that as well and we won't clutter up the site with it.  Thanks!

I think it's only natural that we start with our Sooners don't you.  So if you haven't been to Poll Speak before, basically what they do is provide you with a team report that breaks down where each voter had that particular team ranked for that week and also provides you with each individual writer's entire ballot.  So if someone had you ranked #5 for example, you could then click the link for that writer to see who they had ranked ahead of you in the #1-4 spots.  Pretty self explanatory, so we'll move on to OU and how they fared this week with the voters.

OU was ranked as high as #3 and as low as #13, so a pretty considerable range there between the highest and lowest vote.  Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News had OU ranked the highest at #3 with only Alabama and Ohio State ranked ahead of the Sooners and #1 and #2 respectively.  Some other interesting aspects of Wilner's Week 4 ballot were Oregon ranked at #14 (the lowest of any AP voter), 2-1 Miami at #8 (the highest of any AP voter), Air Force at #16, Michigan unranked, and Texas unranked.

So on to the lower end of the spectrum and voter Doug Lesmerises of the Cleveland Plain Dealer who had OU ranked lower than any other AP voter coming in at #13.  Lesmerises had the usual suspects at 1-3 (Bama, tOSU, and Boise State) then things get interesting.  He had Stanford at #4 clearly due to their impressive win over now 1-3 Notre Dame, Arizona at #7 (the highest of any AP voter), and this genius has 2-1 Miami at #12 and ahead of a 4-0 OU team!  So this is one of those examples of a voter not really being all there and one of the things that makes this website so cool.

Included in the team report for OU is a breakdown of where every individual voter had them ranked on their respective ballot, so I'll run down some of the names you might be familiar with:

  • John Shinn is a writer for the Norman Transcript and he had OU ranked #6.  His top five were in order: Bama, tOSU, Oregon, Boise St, and TCU.  He has Nebraska at #7 and Texas at #23.
  • Scott Wolf is a writer the LA Daily News and probably not a name your familiar with.  However, this is the idiot who had been giving Texas their one first place vote all year until they wet the bed against UCLA last Saturday.  He had OU at #6, but thanks to the incredibly embarrassing loss by Texas finally woke up and gave the Horns a proper ranking dropping them all the way from #1 to #19.  Glad to finally see you accept the reality of this Texas team Scotty!
  • Mike Leach BFF Craig James had OU #7 and not susprisingly for anyone familiar with Helicopter Dad, he is a frequent recipient of Poll Speak's Most Extreme Voter of the Week.  James had Nebraska at #3, their highest ranking, still has UT at # 15, and has Arizona all the way down at #21.
  • ESPiN golden boy Herbie also brought in OU at #7, Stanford at #5, and Texas at #17.
  • Kirk Bohls of the Austin American Statesman has OU at #9, Florida at #5, Utah at #6 (their highest ranking by any voter), and his beloved Longhorns at #18 seven spots above UCLA who he has at #25.
  • Finally, Andy Staples of SI had OU at #10 with Nebraska, Florida, Stanford, and Arizona all ahead of the Sooners.

Just some other random interesting tidbits: 

  • Florida was ranked as high as #2 by the moron known as Scott Wolf
  • Boise State received one first place vote courtesy of Pete DiPrimio who also saw fit to rank Northwestern at #22
  • Ray Ratto had Mizzou at #12?!?
  • Some guy named Kyle Tucker decided that Texas at #13 deserved to be ahead of teams like Arizona, Michigan, Utah, and Iowa?

So as you can see, there are PLENTY of reasons for a website such as Poll Speak to hold these jokers accountable.  Hopefully you guys didn't think this was a complete waste of your time and enjoyed reading just how bad some of these voters can be.

FanPost are for the voice of the fan and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Crimson and Cream Machine administrators.

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