Wednesday, February 27, 2008

ESPN Pre-Spring Top 25, Bring On The Nonsense!

Giving bullshit predictions since 1792


The interesting thing about Pre-Spring Top 25s is that they are actually a fairly good indicator of what the pre-season rankings will look like. Spring games are a great excuse to get drunk but they really don't tell us much when it comes to comparing different teams.

It's also interesting to note which programs will get the ultra-hype this summer and therefore have the chance to really screw an equally deserving team later in the year because of media bias.

The Big Ten on Schlabach's list follow. I already did a three sentence what's good/what’s bad last week, so instead of doing the exact same thing I’ll take a different approach. Are they better than the team directly above them?:

(1. UGA 2. Oklahoma)

3. Ohio State: Are they better than Oklahoma? - I think so. Oklahoma looked like garbage in their BCS game against a coachless team and also somehow lost to Colorado and TTU. To end up in the top 3 you need to beat crappy teams; OSU has done this for several years now, OU has not.

The Buckeyes are getting punished here for losing in the MNC (again), but when you take an objective look, it's hard to deny how good they are. They return an average yet efficient quarterback, have a Heisman candidate in the backfield, and their defense is solid. Main concern: Can they stop the spread offense? Illinois beat them with it last year, but Michigan and Penn State are both going to be attacking with it in 2008 and probably will show up with more talent than Zook did.

(4. USC 5. Missu 6. Texas 7. Florida 8. LSU 9. Clemson 10. Az St (?!) 11. VT 12. Texas Tech)

13. Wisconsin: Are they better than Texas Tech? - Probably not, although it's hard to say, but I'll go with no. TT brings back 18 starters (although this is the most overused argument in sports...and ask UCLA about how much correlation it has). The thing TT does bring to the table is a very good passing game, one that means they are in striking distance even when several scores behind.

Wisconsin, on the other hand, is looking to have another "mea" yet efficient season. They aren't much of a threat to every win it all, but they manage to be solid enough at every position to compete with just about everyone on the schedule. The Badgers are bringing in a rookie qb, however, and Hill always seem to be hurt.

(14. Tenn 15. Kansas 16. Auburn)

17. Penn State: Are they better than Auburn? - There aren't very many reference points here, but because I'm a pretty big homer I'm going to say yes.

Why? Auburn doesn't know who their QB will be (neither does PSU). Auburn had several key losses on defense (so does PSU). Auburn has a hard time competing with the top teams in their conference (um, ya). PSU wins, hands down.

(18. Oregon 19. BYU 20. WVU 21. UVA 22. Pitt)

23. Illinois: Are they better than Pitt? - Yes, Yes, one thousand times Yes. Pitt lost to Navy last year, everyone realized that, right? At home? How one ESPN talking head has justified Pitt at 22 in the nation, while another has them as the 6th best team in their conference (out of 8, mind you) is beyond me.

(24. South Carolina 25. Fresno)


All in all, that's four Big Ten schools, compared to the leaders, the SEC, with six. The Big XII has three of the top six spots. The highest ACC member is at #9, the highest Big East program at #20. Two non-BCS programs.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

m1ek was right, you are a superhomer

Paterno Lives! said...

well then miek and I agree about something.