Blog Entry

The Poll Attacks

Posted on: November 29, 2010 4:03 pm
Edited on: November 29, 2010 7:06 pm
One guy left Villanova and Michigan State off his ballot but put Purdue and Virginia Tech in the top 20. Another guy ranked Villanova in the top 10 (that's reasonable) but left the undefeated team that just beat Villanova unranked (that's unreasonable). Silly AP voters, I tell you. They're the gift that keeps on giving during this holiday season.

Let's do the Poll Attacks!

(Details of AP ballots courtesy of

Associated Press poll: Michigan State and Villanova are both talented, and both only have one loss to a team ranked in the top 15 of the latest AP poll. The Spartans are 5-1 with a loss to No. 7 Connecticut by one possession, and they have a win over No. 23 Washington. The Wildcats are 5-1 with a loss to No. 13 Tennessee, and they've got a double-digit win over UCLA. So we can argue about whether Michigan State and Villanova belong in the top five or the top 10 or even the top 20, I guess. But there is no sensible way to leave either school off a Top 25 ballot.

And yet John Shinn from the Norman Transcript in Oklahoma left both off his AP ballot.


No Michigan State.

No Villanova.

But John has Purdue (no good wins and a double-digit loss to unranked Richmond) ranked 14th and two-loss Virginia Tech ranked 19th, which is three spots higher than the undefeated UNLV team that just beat Virginia Tech on a neutral court by 12. So to recap: Michigan State is 5-1 with a loss to the team ranked No. 8 (UConn) and a win over the team ranked No. 23 (Washington), and John decided that resume isn't worthy of being ranked. And Villanova is 5-1 with a lone loss to the team ranked No. 13 and a win over UCLA, and John decided that resume isn't worthy of being ranked, either. Meantime, Virginia Tech is 4-2 with double-digit losses to the teams ranked No. 5 and No. 24, but John somehow decided that resume is worthy of being ranked all the way up at No. 19, which, again, is three spots higher than the undefeated UNLV team that just beat Virginia Tech on a neutral court by 12. And he has Purdue at No. 14 with a 5-1 record featuring a double-digit loss to unranked Richmond.

Also ranked on John's ballot: North Carolina at No. 25.

So two-loss Virginia Tech and two-loss UNC are both on John's ballot.

But one-loss Michigan State and one-loss Villanova are both off John's ballot.

Perhaps he's just an ACC fan trapped in Big 12 country.

Who knows?

Another weird ballot involving Villanova belongs to Whitelaw Reid of the Daily Progress in Virginia. He has Villanova at No. 8 and Tennessee unranked despite the fact that UT is undefeated with a win over -- wait for it -- Villanova. Not sure how anybody could make sense of that. But this is the same guy who has Washington at No. 12 and Connecticut at No. 23 despite the fact that Washington has two losses and UConn is undefeated with wins over both of the schools (Kentucky and Michigan State) that beat -- wait for it -- Washington. So maybe making sense isn't a priority with good ol' Whitelaw.

Coaches poll: Nobody likes Temple more than I like Temple.

I had the Owls ranked in the top 15 in the preseason, and as high as No. 13 last week. But then they lost to California late Thursday and to Texas A&M on Sunday, and you just can't have a 3-2 team coming off losses to Cal and Texas A&M on your Top 25 ballot. But that's exactly what at least one coach -- and possibly multiple coaches -- did this week. Temple got five points in the coaches poll. That's five more than Texas A&M (5-1) or Cal (3-2) received, case you were wondering.

Since: Oct 31, 2010
Posted on: December 4, 2010 1:33 pm

The Poll Attacks

This poll is flawed, why isn't 4-2 Michigan in the top 25? This is a joke.

Since: Mar 22, 2009
Posted on: November 30, 2010 3:38 pm

The Poll Attacks

The RPI is pretty pointless 5 games into the season. Syracuse jumped 250 spots in 1 week.

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: November 30, 2010 1:24 pm

Dr. Pomeroy?


Did you ever stop to consider that maybe, just maybe these voter's "consultant" is kenpom?  Try to make sense out of some of those.

Since: Feb 11, 2008
Posted on: November 30, 2010 11:03 am

The Poll Attacks

just look at the RPIs for Nova and TN and it is plain that a win over Nova should place us above if not at least right next to Nova.  leaving TN off of the ballot is a joke

Since: Jun 19, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2010 10:23 am

The Poll Attacks

Parrish is right to keep Syracuse around 20 for now. Syracuse has not looked like a good team all year, even if our offense did look better against Ga Tech. Bottom line is we will have no idea where we are until we play a good team like Michigan State or NC State. No disrespect to Michigan and Ga Tech - they are not bad teams, but they are far from being good teams. The fact that we beat them tells us absolutely nothing about where we are now. We were expected to beat them going in. If anything, we were expected to beat them by more than we did. As a Syracuse fan, I think we should hold off on making any comments about how good we are or can be or about where we should be ranked now until we know more.

Since: Nov 6, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2010 9:30 am

The Poll Attacks

I agree with most of your points. Yes unfortunately fab melo is a project. and I doubt we have a top ten team unless college basketball is way down this year. We barely beat some bad teams.

I am however concerned with the teams 3 point shooting. I think we won the last two games b/c the teams played mostly man, kris jo is only effective in man d. If a good team, like mich st., goes zone, it could easily be a 20 point blow out b/c of our inability to knock down an open jumper.  I think we win saturday and hopefully pull off a miracle against state, but not likely.

Since: Sep 24, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2010 8:47 am

The Poll Attacks

I have to agree with Gary on his assessment of Syracuse. They have beaten a couple good teams (barely), but they have not played a great team and they did not look great in the wins they have.
I am not overly concerned with Syracuse's 3 pt shooting like many are. However, they have a serious problem at center, Fab Melo is a project not an instant contributor.
I think the picture will clear up when they play NC State and Michigan State. If they beat both teams, Syracuse deserves a top 10 ranking.
If they beat NC State and lose to MSU, they are a 10-20 team. If they lose both, they should not be ranked.

Since: Mar 4, 2008
Posted on: November 30, 2010 8:39 am

The Poll Attacks

I don't think anyone is taking the polls too seriously at this point. The pre-season tournaments are great to get some good matchups but when teams enter conference play is when the wins and losses will begin to make more sense. However, if you are a Big 12 fan, it is fun to see five teams in the top 20. I really don't think that is realistic but a whole lot of fun come the first part of conference play. I thought the early rankings of the Big 10 were very suspect and it turns out they were. Names like Kansas and North Carolina will always get a benefit of the doubt. The Big 12 was down last year. I am hoping for a better one this year. Rock Chalk.

Since: Nov 24, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2010 1:30 am

The Poll Attacks

I don't care if Tenessee is ranked or not at this time. Once the NCAA gets through with their lying, sack of s&1t coach, they won't be eligible to play in the tourney anyway.

Since: Mar 22, 2009
Posted on: November 30, 2010 12:43 am

The Poll Attacks

My point was the theory of "we beat this team so we should be ranked higher" is idiotic and that is the exact theor Gary uses for Tennessee over villanova.

Parrish hasn't like Cuse all year so no big deal on that. Just don't get how teams are losing and Syracuse keeps winning and he drops and rises teams but just doesn't acknowledge Cuse at all.

As for that Tennessee moron he'll be talking about this win when they're on the bubble in March.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or