Big rush right now, so here is the poll for this week. If you didn’t read last week’s poll, ATH won the award for the poll that most closely resembled the blogpoll at large- which I am not sure is a great award, but I will take the recognition. In case you haven’t noticed, it is just Falco and I filling out the polls from here on out. Send us your thoughts, any big changes needed?
1) Florida- Took care of Vandy as expected, and without any more serious tests on the schedule, they should get ready for Alabama in the SEC title game.
2) Alabama- Barring a very unlikely slip-up to arch-rival Auburn, the Crimson Tide will steel themselves for a matchup with Florida. The SEC West is all but won.
3) Texas- This sure as hell is a second-half team if I ever saw one. They will need to play 4 quarters if they want to win a National Championship.
4) Cincinnati- Now it starts to get exciting. If Cincy can run the table against their slate of West Virginia, Illinois, and Pittsburgh, that resume will look pretty good. Will Tony Pike be rusty when he comes back?
5) Boise State- That was much closer than it had to be against Louisiana Tech, and they need to end the season with a series of blowouts to persuade voters to give them a shot at the big game.
6) TCU- With their fourth straight whooping behind them, a convincing win over Utah could vault them into legitimate 2008 Utah-esque national title talk. That is, they are deserving but won’t be seriously considered.
7) Georgia Tech- Paul Johnson’s team is entering the stratosphere for this program, but if they can finish the ACC slate and title game with just one loss they could jump the mid-major undefeateds.
8) Iowa- Playing it close week after week finally caught up with the Hawkeyes. This is a team that probably should be lower- it is really disappointing that they couldn’t run the table.
9) Pittsburgh- Tough finishing slate, but that Notre Dame game doesn’t seem quite so threatening anymore. I have liked Dave Wannstedt since his days at Miami, and he should get a lot of credit for turning around the Panthers, though it has taken a few years.
10) Oregon- Wow, way to come down to Earth. I guess this will end speculation of them jumping Boise State in the rankings. Still disappointing, PAC 10 teams have been dropping the easy ones all season.
11) USC- This is way too high for this team… or is it just right? I have no idea, but I do know that there is no way they should be ahead of the Ducks like they are in the AP poll. Reputation goes a long way, and it is too far.
12) LSU- The offense fails them yet again. The defense is solid, and with a bit of maturity at the quarterback spot they could be back on top of the SEC.
13) Houston- That UTEP loss is so ugly, and they only barely beat Tulsa and Southern Miss. Any other year, this is your classic 8-4, 9-3 Houston team. I am just not convinced.
14) Ohio State- With that win over Penn State, the Buckeyes can win the Big Ten if they take out Iowa at home. I guess they could be the best team in the Big Ten, but what does that say about the Big Ten? The Big East might be a better conference.
15) Oklahoma State- They still can’t beat the great teams, but they can beat a few more good teams before the season is out to legitimize their placement here. It’s disappointing that the Cowboys still can’t break through to the upper echelon of the Big 12.
16) Miami (FL)- They are a very good team but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them lose any one game from here on out. However, this team has already come a long way since last season and it looks like Randy Shannon has this team on the rebound.
17) Penn State- Overmatched at home and thoroughly outplayed; what quality win does this team have at this point? I thought it might be Michigan, but… not so much.
18) Utah- The six straight losses are great, but TCU looms large this coming week. They could ruin the Horned Frogs’ hopes at breaking the BCS wide open.
19) Virginia Tech- Very manageable end of the schedule (though I said the same thing before they lost to UNC), but they will kick themselves for this season if they don’t somehow win the ACC.
20) Arizona- Mike Stoops is outcoaching his brother this year, but the last four weeks will be a tremendous test for this team as they wrap up the season. Cal, Oregon, Arizona State, and USC. Enjoy.
21) Wisconsin- This is turning into a vintage Wisconsin team- a punishing running game, a serviceable quarterback, and a powerful defensive front. They aren’t exactly modern-era, btu they’re exciting.
22) BYU- Is BYU here on reputation at this point? They are always a good team and just seem to belong here. That win over Oklahoma is looking mediocre, and their two losses were absolute blowouts, one coming to a terrible Florida State squad.
23) Navy- Who called it? That would be yours truly, and while my analysis was off I will take the correct prediction. Navy is rarely a bad team, and this could be a good year for the Mids.
24) South Florida- They just keep creeping in and out of the top 25, and while I am not sure if they belong here, I will give them the benefit of the doubt. The Big East isn’t looking so bad anymore, huh?
25) Temple- Okay, so why are they here over West Virginia (Falco also threw them a vote)? Because I think it is pretty awesome to have Temple in the top 25. So sue me, it’s the 25th spot. Besides, that Navy win is looking even better.
Others receiving votes: West Virginia