I guess it's only fitting that a day after my colleague Native State eviscerated preseason polls, I present my SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 ballot.
Obviously my heart is telling me to put Oklahoma at No. 1. My head can't get past the strength and flat nastiness of Alabama, though. I'm rolling with the Crimson Tide on top.
My other issue: How to treat LSU given the news about Jordan Jefferson and Russell Shepard? I initially had the Tigers ranked third and considered dropping them once it became clear that the Bayou Bengals would be without their services for the foreseeable future. In the end, I opted to keep LSU where it is out of pure laziness. (Lighten up, Francis, it's a preseason poll that counts for diddly.)
Anyway, here's what I've got:
Blatant Homerism Ballot - Week 1
|1||Alabama Crimson Tide||--|
|4||Florida St. Seminoles||--|
|6||Boise St. Broncos||--|
|9||South Carolina Gamecocks||--|
|13||Virginia Tech Hokies||--|
|14||Ohio St. Buckeyes||--|
|15||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||--|
|16||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||--|
|17||Texas A&M Aggies||--|
|18||TCU Horned Frogs||--|
|21||Mississippi St. Bulldogs||--|
|22||West Virginia Mountaineers||--|
|25||Michigan St. Spartans||--|
SB Nation BlogPoll College Football Top 25 Rankings »
A few notes:
*Regarding methodology, I try to create preseason rankings based on pure team strength. In other words, I'd favor 'Bama over every team in the country on a neutral field; I'd favor the Sooners over every team except for the Tide; and so on. Once the season starts, I use body of work.
*As is the case with LSU, the loss of Knile Davis at Arkansas presents a dilemma. With Davis, I could see that team winning the SEC West. He keyed the Razorbacks' run late in the season to an at-large BCS bid.
*I'm buying Nebraska. Yes, the Big Ten gave them a nice little screwjob on the schedule in NU's first season in the conference. Still, I think the Pelinis have the upper hand in scheming against the rest of the league, which should be good enough for the Cornhuskers to win their division. I don't think 11 wins in the regular season is out of the question.
*Plenty of voters would likely balk at putting USC, Texas or Florida anywhere near the top 25. Given what we saw last season, I get that. Yet, with the gobs of talent on those rosters, do you really feel confident that any team not on this list would consistently beat those three? Me neither.
*Virginia Tech isn't a bad team, but the Hokies are likely to find themselves in the thick of the national championship race based strictly on schedule.
OK, let me have it. Where did I screw up?