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Disregard AP Poll, The BCS is Superior

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Four weeks of the college football season have passed and fans are feeling one of two things; extreme joy or denial. That is because the college football world has been shaken up by upsets. The teams winning these games are supported by the joyful fans while the losers coincide with the fans who are in denial. The latter are probably worrying about their teams’ ranking because everyone knows that the National Championship Game only includes the top two teams. Not to worry though, because the only poll that matters is the BCS poll.

The only poll that it used for preseason ranking is that of the Associated Press, which is made up of many sportswriters. This group of journalists could be biased, not always, but it is possible. A group’s personal bias should not decide what a team is ranked.

Seven of the original top ten in the AP poll lost in the first four weeks of the season. A top ten team should be able to go undefeated or at least make a good attempt. Out of the eleven undefeated teams left in the top 25, only three were originally in the top ten: Florida, Texas, and Alabama. This simple stat right here shows that the other seven teams probably should not have been ranked in the top ten at season’s start. Cincinnati started the year unranked and is now 4-0 and ranked tenth.

Every team in college football is trying to reach the BCS National Championship. Notice how BCS is in there and not AP. That is because the National Championship game is based on BCS rankings. A quick lesson on the BCS is shown on the BCS’s official website.

This system is clearly more fair and logical because, even if one team is trashed in one poll, there are seven others to help its ranking. Almost forgot, the AP poll is nowhere to be seen in the BCS rankings system.

The only problem with the BCS is that rankings do not come out until halfway through the season. A simple solution to that is not to look at your team’s rank until the BCS comes out. It could save you a lot of frustration towards your friends at the Associated Press. (Unless you are from Florida of course, then continue to send your praise.)

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About Steve Koobs

  • Yeah, the AP doesn’t factor in the BCS, but:

    End of 2006 regular season:
    AP: (1) Ohio State, (2) Florida
    BCS: (1) Ohio State, (2) Florida

    AP: (1) Ohio State, (2) LSU
    BCS: (1) Ohio State, (2) LSU

    BCS: (1) Oklahoma, (2) Florida
    AP: (1) Florida, (2) Oklahoma

    I don’t think fans are really that worried about rankings. Not in September.

    The BCS polls can’t be released any sooner because, like you said, there are computer polls involved, and rankings would be so volatile with a small sample size of four games.

    Preseason rankings exist to give everyone some kind of barometer of who to watch. Because nobody can predict how a season will go, of course there are going to be highly-ranked that will never sniff the top 10 after August.