Blog Entry

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

Posted on: October 29, 2009 5:41 pm
Edited on: October 29, 2009 7:11 pm

The preseason AP and Coaches polls were released today.

Thus, it's time for some preseason Poll Attacks .

(For those unfamiliar, The Poll Attacks are released Mondays during the season after the AP and Coaches polls are made public. It's the vehicle I use to highlight other's stupidity, and you can't imagine how much stupidity exists.)

AP Poll: Rarely would a school that returned four starters from a team that advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament begin the subsequent season unranked. But Siena is not a part of the power structure voters respect, so the Saints got the shaft.

It's shameful.

Look, I've doubted Siena before, and I thought I had good reasons. But I'm not so stubborn that I can't adjust when I see a program advance in the NCAA tournament in consecutive seasons, which is why I adjusted and gave Siena the benefit of the doubt. The Saints deserve that considering what they've accomplished and what they return. If they flop, I'll punish them accordingly. But not getting a preseason ranking is wrong, I think.

Among those who did not vote for the Saints is Bill Cole from the Winston-Salem Journal .

He must hate non-BCS schools.

Because Cole not only omitted Siena, he also left Butler off his ballot.

Seriously, no Butler?

(Picture me YELLING that question)

The Bulldogs return every relevant part from a team that won 26 games and made the NCAA tournament for the third consecutive season. They have high-level players like Gordon Hayward, Matt Howard and Shelvin Mack, and there is absolutely no way to justify leaving the Bulldogs off a Top 25 ballot. Perhaps that's why Cole was the only of the 65 AP voters to do so. Meantime, Cole has UCLA 24th, meaning he ranked a NCAA tournament team returning just one starter 24th but did not rank an NCAA tournament team returning all five starters. Make sense of that, if you can.

Also: Cole has Kentucky ranked 12th.

I could spend 500 words telling you how off that is, but I'm ready to move on.

Coaches Poll: It took me 17 seconds of examining the Coaches poll to realize those 22 votes awarded to Southern California were probably intended for South Carolina and submitted under the label "USC." So why do you think the folks tabulating votes for the Coaches poll couldn't figure that out, too?

I mean, Southern California shouldn't be getting votes in a Top 50 poll, much less a Top 25 poll; that's why the Trojans got zero votes in the AP poll, because nobody voted for them and the people tabulating votes for the AP didn't senselessly award them points. And I'm furious if I'm South Carolina coach Darrin Horn. I'm not saying the Gamecocks deserve to be ranked, but they do deserve to get whatever votes they actually get. Mistakes like this shouldn't happen. It's embarrassing. For them, not me.
Category: NCAAB

Since: Mar 8, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2009 6:42 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

It was a very honorable act to fix your post, and I was pleased to see that you respond to what the readers have to say.  I'm sure many other people on various websites would not check to see what the people reading the article have to say.  It was very nice to see, and I will be sure to definately read your other articles because you have become my favorite columnist on this site.

Since: Jun 18, 2009
Posted on: October 31, 2009 6:19 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

UCLA's is going to have to worry about getting past Portland first, too.  They're returning all five starters from a team that won 19 games and shot 41.8% from deep last year - second in the nation.

One hot shooting night and big bad UCLA could fall in the first round, especially if they aren't all back to 100% by then.

Since: Oct 30, 2009
Posted on: October 30, 2009 9:41 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

I'm a Butler fan and right now we'll just worry about getting past Minnesota before I waste my time thinking about getting "utterly destroyed" by UCLA.  Thanks

Butler might be overrated at #10/11, but I promise you they're overrated for a reason.  Your post is one part hater, two parts lack of knowledge around the college basketball in general - not just Butler.  I'll let some of it slide for you just representing your squad, but that tournament is loaded.  You've been spending too much time at hermosa beach bro.

Since: Oct 30, 2009
Posted on: October 30, 2009 9:23 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

Butler may be a bit overrated at #10/#11, but you don't have to make up for it by going completely to the opposite end.  You're right. Their out of conference schedule is difficult and I don't even blame you for predicting losses that might take them out of the top 25 by Jan 2.  But you're over-stepping the bounds of hater nation if you don't think that.... a top 25 team from 08-09 that started 3 freshman/1 sophomore/1 junior, graduated no one, whose sophomore was last year's conference player of the year, had two of its freshman go to New Zealand/win a gold medal for the U-19 US team for the first time since 1991, and had one of its freshman earn a spot on the FIBA all-tournament team.... deserves a preseason top 25 ranking and is legitimately one of the top 25 teams in the country.  Come on. 

Since: Oct 30, 2009
Posted on: October 30, 2009 8:52 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

2007 NCAA Second Round

Butler 62
Maryland 59

I have been watching Butler Basketball since I stepped foot on campus as a student there in 1999. This is the most talented team we have ever had and that includes two Sweet 16 teams(2003 and 2007.) This year's roster has only two Seniors, one starter one reserve. We have a 6'10 Freshman who provides the depth we needed in the post and we have another solid recruiting class on the way for next year. 

There has been a lot of pre-season hype about the Bulldogs and I very excited to see what are season looks like after November and December. We have a great non-conference schedule. We will be prepared to play come March and I bet none of the big boys will want to see our name in their bracket.

I dare Maryland to schedule a home-and-home with the Bulldogs for the next two years.

Since: Sep 20, 2008
Posted on: October 30, 2009 8:41 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

oh my freaking goodness!!! I'm going to send you a personal message on January 2... you're speaking nonsense.

Since: Sep 17, 2006
Posted on: October 30, 2009 7:17 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

I think what people are missing about Butler is that they lost to LSU, who was ranked and on fire at the end of the year.
They weren't just another SEC team - they were one of the top five LSU rosters in the modern era. Possibly top 3.

Since: Jan 13, 2009
Posted on: October 30, 2009 5:16 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

You clearly don't know anything about college basketball if you have to ask "what is so great about Butler?" They might not be top 10, but they are still easily among the best in the game. They return every single player from their team last year, and have added former Indianapolis city player of the year, 6' 10" Andrew Smith. Sure they lost in first round last year, but they played LSU close despite having a horrible shooting day and starting 3 freshmen.

Now, we all know that experience makes players better right? So, Butler is now starting 5 EXPERIENCED players, and two of them gained a huge amount of said experience at the u-19 basketball world championship, where Gordon Hayward was also named to the all-tournament team. The team also features junior Matt Howard, who led the team in points and rebounds last year (14.8 and 6.8) and shoots 55% from the floor. Moreover, he led D-1 ball in trips to the free throw line; again, if you think that's a stat to be ignored, you don't know anything about college basketball.

As a team last year, BU only averaged 67.8 pts per game. At first glance, that admittedly sounds bad. But, they held their opponents to an average of 57.9 ppg and a ridiculous 38.5% shooting from the floor. You can say this is the product of a weak schedule if you want, but their OOC was 15th in all of NCAAB. They played good teams, and went 12-3 against RPI top 100 schools. Your Terps went 8-11 against RPI top 100, with 3 of those losses coming from teams ranked lower than 50. Against teams worse than 100th, Butler and Maryland were essentially the same.

So, I dunno... you tell me what is so great about Butler? Great players? Good coach? Experience? Check, check, check.

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: October 30, 2009 4:49 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

Butler is experienced, well coached and much ballyhooed. The Bulldogs will get utterly distroyed by UCLA when they meet in December. The preseason polls mean very little outside the Top 10. It's great for discussion and fuels the blogosphere, but really, polls are irrelevant in college hoops because the champion is acutally decided on the court. Imagine that BCS.

Since: Jul 8, 2007
Posted on: October 30, 2009 4:04 pm

The Poll Attacks (already in midseason form)

Let's see... how many teams make the 2nd round of the tourney? 32...

How many teams are ranked? 25...

And maybe Siena got lucky to win that game, and they really are not that good. A 13-seed goes crazy and beats a 4-seed. Then they return 4 starters. That automatically makes them a ranked team? I think not.

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