Here's the ballot I just sent in to the AP office:
1. Notre Dame
3. Ohio State
7. Kansas State
9. Texas A&M
11. South Carolina
13. Florida State
15. Oregon State
22. Northern Illinois
23. Kent State
24. Boise State
Dropped out: Texas, Rutgers, Oklahoma State, Mississipp State, Washington
New teams: Vanderbilt, Northwestern, Northern Illinois, Kent State, Boise State.
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The comment section:
- When it comes to Ohio State vs. Georgia (and Florida and Oregon), I guess I should just copy and paste my explanations from the previous two weeks. But since some people are checking in for the first time, or still have the audacity to disagree with my opinion, here it is again:
1. Ohio State is eligible for the AP poll. It is not eligible for the BCS, coaches or Harris. But again, it is eligible for the AP poll, therefore I must consider the Buckeyes. The fact it is on probation does not affect my vote. The people who caused the probation - Jim Tressel, Terrelle Pryoer, etc. - are gone. The players on the current team didn't cheat. I won't penalize them.
3. Being unbeaten still means something.
2. Beyond just being unbeaten, Ohio State has a slightly better body of work than Georgia: More road wins, more wins over teams with winning records, more wins over ranked teams. (Most recently Michigan on Saturday). But it's still not a great resume', which is why Alabama gets the nod over Ohio State. Frankly, if Georgia's lone loss hadn't been a blowout, I'd also have the Bulldogs ahead of the Buckeyes.
4. Bottom line, it doesn't matter. The AP doesn't figure in the BCS formula, thank goodness. And this will be sorted out next week anyway. If Georgia beats Alabama, it will leap Ohio State on my ballot. Not that my ballot should matter to you anyway. Breathe, relax. Besides, my wife is a Michigan grad, so whatever you all want to say about me about voting for Ohio State doesn't compare to the grief I'm getting at home.
- Elsewhere in the top 10, I moved Florida ahead of Oregon, based on the Gators having the better resume', bolstered by the win over Florida State. In fact Florida may have the best resume' in the country, but Georgia wins head-to-head, so the Bulldogs get the edge.
- The bottom part of the poll is wretched. Ten teams that were ranked No. 12 or below in my poll last week lost. So I had to move some mediocre teams in: Kent State, which I had been resisting for weeks because it lost to Kentucky, finally gets in. Same with Northern Illinois, whose loss was to a bad Iowa team.
- The team that I moved in that I actually feel the best about: Vanderbilt. The Commodores are 8-4, and all their losses are to teams in my top 25: Georgia, Florida, South Carolina and Northwestern.