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OU, Texas, and the BlogPoll

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It seems it is the right of every football blogger and talking head to weigh in on the Big XII FUBAR, so please indulge me.  I know that no one from Texas or Oklahoma cares what a bunch of LSU fans think.  But, opinions and assholes and all that…

There is a three-way tie in the Big 12 South.  It is not a head-to-head tie.  If it was, it would clearly be Texas over OU.  But it’s not.  So the Big 12 has a series of tiebreakers and it eventually reaches BCS ranking, which is a stupid tiebreaker but it’s not my rule.  Texas’ real gripe isn’t with the pollsters or the computers, it is with the Big 12 who created such an asinine tiebreaker. 

Honestly, the best tiebreaker after head-to-head (all 1-1) and record vs. common opponents (all 5-0) is the strength of conference schedule.  Those 7-1 marks aren’t equal.  Texas had to play Mizzou, Kansas, and Colorado.  Tech played Kansas, KSU, and Nebraska.  OU played Kansas, KSU, and Nebraska as well.  Believe it or not, that works out to the same record of North opponents.  I’d give Texas the nod by virtue of playing the North champ, but I’m not sure how that rule would be written.  But the rule is the rule: BCS standings.

And the BCS is not a two-way tie between Texas and OU.  I’d look at all of the one-loss BCS conference teams plus Utah as one tier.  And I rank teams on two variables: who I think would win and on resume.  And resume voting for me weighs one factor above all else: who did you beat?  Here are the quality wins over bowl eligible teams of each of the contenders for #2 behind Bama: 

OKLAHOMA:  TCU, Cincinnati, Nebraska, Texas Tech, Oklahoma St
TEXAS: Oklahoma, Mizzou, Oklahoma St
TEXAS TECH: Nebraska, Texas, Oklahoma St
FLORIDA: LSU, Georgia, South Carolina, Florida St
USC: Ohio St, Oregon, Arizona, Cal, Notre Dame
PENN ST: Wisconsin, Ohio St, Michigan St
UTAH: Air Force, Oregon St, TCU, BYU

First off, who else thinks it’s funny Air Force is a better win for Utah than Michigan? 

Some things jump out: Penn St didn’t play ANYBODY.  They ducked both Minnesota and Northwestern, the other two bowl eligible Big Ten teams.  Utah actually has a pretty good resume.  USC’s wins outside of Ohio St aren’t that special.  None of Florida’s wins are that great, really.  Texas only beat three bowl eligible teams, and their quality wins don't look all that different from Texas Tech's.   

But what really jumps out is how much better OU’s resume is than everyone else.  TCU has one of the best defenses in the country and might be the best team in the Mountian West.  If they play Utah 100 times, they probably win 60 of them.  Unfortunately for them, the real one was one of the 40.  Cincinnati won the Big East and OU beat them when Cincy still had a healthy QB.  Nebraska went 8-4.  Okie St is 9-3.  They beat a one-loss team.  Their only loss is to a one-loss team. 

I’m all for head-to-head to break a tie, but there simply isn’t a tie.  It’s not really that close in my eyes.  As far as ranking these teams in a poll, not thinking about breaking a tie in the division, it’s clear to me that OU has the best overall resume.  Which is why I ranked OU ahead of Texas.  Now the BlogPoll doesn’t count for the BCS, but hopefully this gives you insight into creating a ballot.  The problem is not with the poll, the problem is using the poll to break a tie in the Big 12 North

I can’t justify voting Texas ahead of OU despite my personal belief they should win the Big 12 South by virtue of beating Mizzou.    The problem is not the BCS (well, there are plenty of problems with the BCS but this isn’t one of them), it is the big 12 using the BCS to break the tie. 

Without further ado, the rest of my BlogPoll after the jump:

Rank Team Delta
1 Alabama --
2 Oklahoma 1
3 Florida 1
4 Texas --
5 Penn State --
6 Southern Cal --
7 Utah 1
8 Texas Tech 1
9 Boise State --
10 Ohio State --
11 TCU --
12 Georgia Tech 5
13 Cincinnati 2
14 Oklahoma State 2
15 Boston College 3
16 Georgia 3
17 Michigan State 3
18 Ball State 3
19 Pittsburgh 3
20 Northwestern 3
21 Missouri 7
22 Oregon 4
23 Florida State 7
24 West Virginia --
25 Mississippi --

 

Dropped Out: Oregon State (#19).