Sunday, October 21, 2007

College Football Top Eight Rankings for October 21, 2007

College football still makes no sense. Florida and LSU won as expected. By the box score, the game was even between Florida and Kentucky, but Tim Tebow demonstrated his resolve in a game that meant the season to the Gators. As for LSU, their flare for the dramatic never ceases. Also in the SEC, Vanderbilt shocked the Gamecocks in Columbia. And, how can we forget Rutgers dismantling of South Florida? The Scarlet Knights salvaged their season by arising from their comatose state. While Ray Rice is not exactly a Heisman Trophy candidate this season, he pulverized the Bulls and let the conference know that they’re still in the hunt for the Big East title.

Our view on pre-season rankings
Everything you saw back in August and September were simply suggestions by individuals who are supposed to be more knowledgeable than you or me. These “suggestions” serve as a reference point that allow for pundits without this season’s game tape to go off of.

How this ranking works?
This ranking will not be like a poll, which often drops a school’s ranking by a minimum of four spots for any loss regardless of circumstance. We will do our best to look at the full body of work. If you consistently win in unimpressive fashion, then I’ll note it. If you demolish teams and then produce a 60-minute brain fart on the gridiron, then I might forgive it to a degree.

Why only rank the top eight teams?
In a fantasy world, these top eight teams would participate in a playoff system, which would be played at seven current Bowl sites. If only the university presidents bought into this just and highly lucrative manner in which to crown a national champion.

1. Ohio State: Weakness demonstrated late on in Columbus, but the defense is still largely impenetrable. So was the D last year until the Michigan game. Huge show-me game at Happy Valley.
2. LSU: Anyone with a heart condition should not be a fan of this team. SEC teams seem to have found blueprint in order to stay in games. Early Doucet’s return and contribution buoyed the Tigers to victory.
3. Boston College: For a top 5 team in almost every poll imaginable, Matt Ryan and his team remains under the radar. Thursday’s trip to Blacksburg will be BC’s toughest challenge to-date.
4. Florida: The Gators finally achieve a result to match their effort and talent. Victory plus South Carolina’s shock loss to Vanderbilt puts Florida in pole position for SEC East title.
5. Oregon: This squad is just drilling teams and must continue to do so while others like USC continue to struggle. Dennis Dixon’s performance at the Big House gains more steam as the Wolverines have begun pulverizing their opposition.
6. Oklahoma: Defense arises, but teams have done that all year against Iowa State. Evident lack of poise from the Sooners in recent contests bode poorly for future games.
7. South Florida: Despite the loss on Thursday, the Bulls remain the best team in the Big East, just paces ahead of West Virginia. Penalties and miscues ruined the Bulls’ “situation” and chances for what would’ve been a much-fabled national championship.
8. West Virginia: This 8th spot could go to a host of teams. Why not undefeated Arizona State? While I like what I’ve seen from the Sun Devils, especially in the second half, the season-ending injury to running back Ryan Torain is a deal-breaker.

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