Back for another week with the Week 4 version of the AP Poll and as always, thanks to Pollspeak we have access to every ballot from each AP voter.
Oklahoma finished atop the poll for the fourth consecutive week and after a big win on the road against Florida State, actually strengthened their hold on that #1 ranking. The Sooners picked up an additional six first place votes this week to finish with a total of 37 out of 60. They continue to be joined by the same three other teams to garner first place votes in LSU (14), Alabama (7), and Boise State (2). Stanford moves up to #5 in the spot previously occupied by Florida State.
OU was obviously ranked as high as #1 and now lower than #4. Let's take a look at those #4 voters because, my bias aside, I'm not sure how after this last Saturday you could possibly justify putting the Sooners that low. Oklahoma has unquestionably the best win of any team early this season, so how exactly does that equate to a #4 ranking? Anyway, the two voters
who have no clue what they're doing that had OU #4 were; Eric Hansen (South Bend Tribune) and Tom Murphy (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette). Hansen had a top four (in order) of: Alabama (arguably fair), Stanford (sorry, but no), LSU (again, arguably fair), and OU. Murphy had a top four (in order) of: Boise State (um, no), LSU, Bama, and OU. I suppose OU, LSU, and Bama could be a top three in just about any order without having any real claim to say "That's not fair", but Stanford and Boise State just don't belong with those three right now.
Now for some of the other aspect of this week's poll that stood out.
* Arkansas is #14 in the final poll, but continues to be the ranked team with the most doubters finishing as high as #6 on at least one ballot and as low as #25.
* Baylor is #17 the final poll and tallied votes as high as #10 (Mike Hlas) and as low as #23. Mr. Hlas saw fit to put the Bears ahead of teams like Florida, Oregon, FSU, Va Tech, and A&M (who he has all the way down at #17).
* Clemson, who did us all the favor of beating Auburn so we no longer have to hear all the idiots on ESPiN touting their "nation's longest winning streak" SEC sponsored line, entered the Top 25 for the first time this week at #21. Ray Ratto was so impressed with the win that he ranked them #13 and they were as low as unranked by eight voters.
* I mentioned in our report on the polls release yesterday that I thought FSU really got the shaft by voters this week after a hard fought loss against our Sooners. They were #5 last week and were (unfairly?) dropped six spots to #11 in this week's final poll. There were two people who actually "get it" and voted FSU #5 and I can guarantee one of them will stun you. Scott Wolf was one and the other was . . . wait for it . . . Craig James. I know, I know, take a moment to compose yourself.
* CC's Iowa State Cyclones didn't quite get enough votes to enter the final poll, but are certainly pushing for it with their 3-0 start. They actually drew a #22 vote and Top 25 votes from eleven different voters, but finished unranked because it was their most common ranking (49 times).
* Nebraska, who I think has really been up and down early, continues to be ranked in the Top 10 despite their inconsistencies so far. They got votes as high as #4 (seriously Ira Schoffel?!?) and as low as #16 with a most common ranking of #11 (10 times).
* Oklahoma State finished at #7 in the final poll despite what I'm sure was few if any voters who actually saw their game this last week against Tulsa. They drew votes as high as #4 (Bob Condotta) and as low as #15.
* Texas A&M finished at #8 in the final poll after a big, but not necessarily impressive win over Idaho on Saturday. They drew votes as high as #5 and as low as #17. Big showdown this week with fellow Top 10 team Okie State.
* Finally, our good friends the Texas Longhorns. Texas continues to sneak their way up in the final poll, this week finishing at #19. Their three "big" wins and the smoke and mirrors they managed to use to win said games are apparently enough to have the voters fooled to keeping bumping them up. They reek of a team that fattens up their record on these early season cupcakes and once they face some quality competition gets exposed and in embarrassing fashion (we can only hope!). Regardless, they drew votes as high as #13 (Doug Lesmerises, you are absurd sir) and as low as unranked (Andy Staples, a voice of logic!).