It's time for A Sea of Blue's blogpoll ballot, and I am somewhat surprised at how it turned out. First of all, I thought I would be elevating Alabama to the #1 spot after their thrashing of Florida down in The Swamp on Saturday. I have to admit I am still shocked at how uncompetitive that game was, very nearly as futile as Kentucky @ LSU. So I was all set to crown the Tide as the new #1.
Then I plugged it into my system and lo! LSU still comes out on top. "Why?", you ask? Well, it's complicated and very, very close, but the biggest influence seems to be the AP poll, which I take into consideration. The difference between them is just over half a point, 71.95 to 71.39. For all intents and purposes, you can consider Alabama, Oklahoma, and LSU essentially tied at #1 in my poll due to the narrow difference between them.
After those three, though, there is a significant difference between the next three, which are also very close together as a group - Oklahoma St., Boise St., and Clemson. It seems amazing how high Clemson has jumped in such a short time, but they have really performed, having beaten one top 20 and 3 top 10/15 teams in a row, and one of them on the road.
After that, the picture gets a lot muddier, and Stanford is beginning to suffer from lack of schedule strength. Texas is poised for a big jump if they can come out on top of the Red River Rivalry next week, and Georgia Tech and Oregon are just hanging around waiting for others to fail or their schedule to progress to the next major test.
Florida St. and TCU both dropped out of my ballot altogether. FSU probably suffered from that open date, and a 2-2 record, and their favorable schedule which had them looking like a national championship contender is now working hard against them. They'll probably be back in the top 25, but I don't see them reaching the top ten on my ballot again this year.
As for your Boise fans, well, the SOS is really starting to bite in my evaluation. I don't see them dropping out of the top ten unless they lose, but they are going to need help from here on out to move up. TCU is still on their schedule, but the Horned Frogs lost to SMU at home, and that has really hit them hard. They have a chance to move back in with a win in vs. BYU and Boise, though.
That's what I have. What do you think?