Starting this week, Athlon Sports is going to do a shadow poll to mirror what the College Football Playoff committee is working on. I've been invited to participate, which entails submitting my top eight teams each week.
I view these rankings as a reflection of accomplishment more than which teams are “best.” Essentially it boils down to:
- Whom have you beaten?
- How did you beat them?
- Where did you play them?
While I aim for something more objective than the simple “eye test,” I’d admit that this does involve some subjective judgment on the quality of opponents and circumstances. Also, note that the volatility built into this kind of methodology is high, especially this early in the season.
Let's do it.
Athlon Sports Media Poll: Week 5
5. Texas A&M
7. Florida State
8. Mississippi State
Notes and observations:
*UCLA hasn’t overwhelmed me with its play on the field, but the Bruins beat two Power 5 teams out of conference on the road and a solid Memphis team at the Rose Bowl. Blowing out Arizona State in Tempe made the biggest statement so far.
I like what UCLA has accomplished, but I see a couple Ls coming down the pike.
*Based on what we saw out of Arkansas against Texas A&M, a three-touchdown win over the Razorbacks speaks well of Auburn. The Tigers also got it done on the road at Kansas State.
*I’d contend Oregon owns the best win of the year in beating Michigan State, even if it did come in Eugene.
*Oklahoma’s decisive win over Tennessee will probably look better and better as the season wears on. Winning comfortably at West Virginia is nothing to sneeze at, too.
*I suspect Alabama is actually the best team in the country right now. The Crimson Tide have a chance to make a big move up this week if they knock off Ole Miss in Oxford.
*Florida St.? Close wins in games that really shouldn't have been that close.