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View Poll Results: Who Should Be Ranked Number 1?
Miami 3 42.86%
Florida State 1 14.29%
Nebraska 0 0%
Oklahoma 2 28.57%
Florida 0 0%
Other 1 14.29%
Voters: 7. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-03-2002, 09:38 PM   #1
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Talking Bama's 2002/2003 College Football PreSeason Rankings

1.MIAMI HURRICANES—Should be No. 1 until they are beaten. Which could come soon. They face Florida Sept. 7th in Gainesville. Heisman Finalist and QB Ken Dorsey returns. He owns the school record for TD’s(58) and should break the school record for passing yards. He needs 1,495 to pass Gino Torretta record. He’s 26-1 as a starter. Miami set the school record for scoring in its quest to win the national championship. Hurricanes only return three starters from that high-powered offense, but you know Miami is always full of talented players. Offense finished eighth in total offense last season with 454.8 yards per game and ranked second in scoring(43.2 points per game). Sophomore Willie McGahee(6-1-220) should start at tailback, but Jarrett Payton son of the great late Walter Payton will have his chance too. Offensive line could be a concern. In the spring the line averaged 1.1 yards per carry. Junior wide receiver Andre Johnson(6-3-212) could be the best in the nation. TE Kellen Winslow Jr. son of the great NFL TE will get plenty of playing time. Hurricanes forced 45 turnovers and led the nation in turnover margin, but the entire secondary is gone from 2001. Defensive tackle William Joseph(6-5-282) and defensive end Jerome McDougle(6-2-260) combined for 51 tackles for loss, and 24 sacks, making Miami probably the best defense in the country. First real test comes against Florida Sept. 7th at Gainesville. Opens season Aug. 31st against Florida A&M at home.

2.FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES—Coach Bobby Bowden can’t handle another 8-4 season. He won’t tolerate finishing second in the ACC again. I’ll bet you on that. QB Charles Rix should be much improved this season. He took a pretty good beating as a freshman. He ranked number two in passing in the ACC. He threw for 2,734 yards and an ACC leading 24 touchdowns. He looked good in the spring. Junior running back Greg Jones(6-1-243) ran for over 100 yards in four of Seminoles last seven games. He brings a balanced offense with his ability. Offensive line allowed only 13 sacks, and two All-American candidates tackle Brett Williams and guard Montrae Holland will keep Rix safe and sound. The defense remains the unknown. Junior defensive end Kevin Emanuel(6-4-258) will be the big man on defense. Seminoles have a 13 game schedule. It’s going to be a long year. Opens season Aug. 24th against Iowa State at home. First big test will be against Miami in Miami Oct. 12th.

3.OKLAHOMA SOONERS—Many believe the Sooners will return as national champions in 2003. They have the coach and the team to do it with. Oklahoma went out and hired Kevin Wilson, formerly of Northwestern to put the zing back in the offense. If QB Jason White is recovered from his knee injury that will make things a whole lot easier. Senior QN Nate Hybl(6-4-220) is available if White isn’t. Senior tight end Trent Smith made 61 receptions last season and could be the best at his position in the league. Wide receiver Mark Clayton(5-11-169) is small but very talented. Sooners must develop a good running game to take some pressure off their receivers. Quentin Griffin and Renaldo Works will have that responsibility. Redshirt freshman Kejuan Jones is suspose to be very quick and strong. Sooners lost a lot on defense when linebacker Rocky Calmus went pro. Junior defensive end Jimmy Wilkerson(6-4-260) and sophomore tackle Tommie Harris(6-3-288) are two of the best in the Big 12. Sooners face their first big test when they play Alabama Sept. 7th at home. Sooners open the season Aug. 30th against Tulsa in Tulsa.

4.TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS—Vols lost three talented players to the NFL Draft in WR Donte Stallworth, RB Travis Stephens and defensive lineman John Henderson, but team is still full of great talent. Receiver Kelley Washington(6-4-225) is thought to be explosive, exciting and one of the best receivers in the nation.. He caught 64 passes for 1,010 yards as a freshman and is expected to enter the NFL Draft in 2003. Tight end Jason Witten figures to get more receptions than last year. Quarterback Casey Clausen is back to head the offense. He is 17-3 as a starter. Has thrown for 4,442 yards and 37 touchdowns in two seasons. Jabari Davis and Cedric Houston will handle the running game. Houston is a slasher with the speed to break off into long runs. Vols lost four starters from their defensive line. The good news is that they have four seniors ready to start. Vols are solid at tackle with run stuffers Rashad Moore,(6-4-290) Ed Kendrick, Demetrin Veal and Aubrayo Franklin. The SEC’s all-time kickoff return yardage is within reach for Leonard Scott, who has 72 returns for 1,698 yards. The SEC record is 2,263 held by Vanderbilt’s Mark Johnson. Big test come Sept. 21st against Florida at home. Opens season Aug. 31st against Wyoming.

5.TEXAS LONGHORNS—QB Chris Simms is finally free of the Major Applewhite debate. Applewhite is gone. Simms has a great receiving corp to throw too. Receiver Roy Williams, B.J. Johnson and tight end Bo Scaife are all possible first- team All-Big-12 picks. RB Cedric Benson(6-0-206) is said to be as good as former Earl Campbell who played for Texas and the NFL. That’s saying a lot. He’s also an accomplished baseball player. Benson ran for 1.053 yards before injuring nerves in his shoulder and neck. He’s had some off field problems like a misdemeanor arrest for drugs and alcohol. Longhorns are solid along the defensive front, beginning with All-American candidate Cory Redding(6-5-270) and Kalen Thornton. First big test is not until Oct. 12th which is against Oklahoma at home. Opens season Aug. 31st against North Texas at home.

6.FLORIDA GATORS—Okay Steve Sprurrier is gone, but QB Rex Grossman remains. Grossman has tossed an NCAA Division 1 record 55 TD passes in his first two seasons. With 20 more, Grossman will move into third behind Danny Wuerffel and Peyton Manning on the SEC list. New Head coach Ron Zook will be just as demanding as Sprurrier I feel. New offensive coordinator Ed Zaunbrecher has coached seven QB’s-including Chad Pennington at Marshall, Tommy Hodson at LSU, and Mark Hermann of Purdue who have set school passing records. Gators will adopt a more diversified running game. RB Earnest Graham is 20 yards shy of the 2,000 mark for his career. Taylor Jacobs will be the big man at wide receiver. He had a career game in the Orange Bowl. 10 catches for 170 yards and two touchdowns. Tight ends Aaron Walker and Ben Troupe return for another season. Look for UF to start in a 4-3 alignment, but shift frequently to a three-man front to get more speed on the field. Defensive tackle Ian Scott((6-3-307) anchors the front line. Critical game Sept. 7th against Miami. Opens season Aug. 31st against UAB(University of Alabama Birmingham).

7.LSU TIGERS—Replacing QB Rohan Davey will be sophomore Matt Mauck. He was MVP in the SEC Championship game against Tennessee last year when Davey went down with an injury. LSU could be the surprise team of the season. He’s quick and seems to have a good feel for the job. He has a couple of good receivers to throw to. Michael Clayton had one of the best freshman years of any receiver in school history. Will be joined by steady, and quick Jerel Myers. Running back Brandon Toefield if healthy will gain over a 1,000 yards. Tigers have a capable backup in Domanick Davis. He rushed for 122 yards and four TD’s in their bowl game against Illinois. Defensive line is questionable. He only returning starter is junior tackle Chad Lavalais(6-3-270). He’s solid against the run. Marquise Hill(6-7-285) has been pegged as the star of the future. Linebacker Bradie James is the anchor of the defense. He had 78 solo tackles last season. He was instrumental in limiting Tennessee to 50 yards rushing. Key game will be their first game, which is Sept. 1st against Virginia Tech in Virginia.

8.COLORADO BUFFALOES—Won their first Big 12 championship in 2001. Beat Nebraska 62-36. Can they do it again? Coach Barnett proud of the way his team put everything together at the end of the season. Talented QB Craig Ochs will lead the offense if he can stay healthy. He’s the top pass-rush QB in the Big 12. Junior RB Chris Brown((6-3-220) had great games against Nebraska and Texas. But Buff’s need more from their passing game to succeed in 2002. They averaged 205.9 yards a game in 2001. Offensive line is solid. Buff’s will have bigger receivers in D.J. Hackett(6-3-195) a junior transfer from Cal State Northridge and Derek McCoy. Colorado averaged 33 points per game, but allowed 111 points(37 point average) in their final three games. Defensively, the area of most concern is the secondary. Buffs allowed 228.6 passing yards a game, 44 pass plays of 20 yards or more, six passes of 40 yards or longer and 17 touchdowns passes. Opens season Aug. 31 against Colorado State at home.

9.WASHINGTON HUSKIES—Returns a huge and experienced offensive line. QB Cody Pickett has recovered from his shoulder injury. Threw for 2,403 yards in 2001. The option is in big time. Great receivers in Reggie Williams, and Paul Arnold. Williams was third in the league with 55 receptions. He had 973 in reception yardage. Ex-linebacker Tui Tuiasosopo(6-2-235) will play fullback. Huskies will stick with their 3-4 on the basis that it was personnel that gave up 175 points in the final four games. Huskies are stacked in linebackers. ILB Ben Mahdavi led the team in tackles and shared the PAC-10 high in fumbles recovered. In Washington’s victories over Michigan and USC came from their special teams via a blocked kick runback for a TD and a late field goal. Critical and opening game is against Michigan Aug. 31st at Michigan.

10.NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS—Huskers seem to always find a way to win 10 or 11 games per year. Junior QB Jammal Lord(6-2-210) will try to replace Eric Crouch. He is also a run-pass threat with good speed and a decent arm. Senior RB Dahrran Diedrick(6-0-225) led the Big 12 in rushing last season with 1,299 yards. Fullback Judd Davies(6-0-255) is coming off a solid season. Offensive line could be a concern, but they always seem to find a farm boy that can move a tractor. Defensive coordinator Craig Bohl says the defense will go more to the zone. They’ve used the 4-3 scheme since 1992. Senior CB DeJuan Groce is an All-American candidate and senior end Chris Kelsay(6-5-255) showed signs of becoming a force. Groce has three interceptions and 14 pass breakups in 2001. Sophomore linebacker Barrett Rudd is said to be a great one soon. Special teams is the best part of this team. Nebraska has two kickers, Josh Brown and Sandro DeAngelis. Both have good range. Punter Kyle Larson averaged 42.5 yards per kick. Groce ranked seventh nationally(14.2 yards) last season in punt returns. Opens season Aug. 24th against Arizona State at home.

11.OHIO STATE BUCKEYES—Who will be quarterback is a big question here in Ohio. Freshman Justin Zwich, the most publicized high school quarterback to sign with OSU may grab the starting job away from Scott McMullen and junior Craig Krenzel((6-4-215). Krenzel was instrumental in that big win over Michigan in 2001. Ohio State is deep in wide receivers with Chris Vance(6-2) and Michael Jenkins(6-5). They combined for 83 catches last season and 1,593 yards. Both are great leapers and capable of acrobatic catches. Freshman running back Maurice Clarett who enrolled last winter posted staggering numbers in high school, running for 2,194 yards and scoring 38 touchdowns. Impressive! Junior offensive tackle Shane Oliviea(6-3-210) anchors the line. Eight players return from one of the Big Ten’s best defenses. They were bruising and aggressive in 2001. Senior safeties Mike Doss and Donnie Nickey(6-3-203) rule the defense. First real test is Sept. 14th against Washington State at home. Opens the season Aug. 24th against Texas Tech at home.

12.GEORGIA BULLDOGS—Head coach Mark Richt’s first season at Georgia included an 8-4 record. Lost to Boston College 20-16 in the Music City Bowl. Richt’s team had a very satisfying victory over Tennessee. Winning 26-24. They also beat their hated rival Georgia Tech 31-17. QB David Greene returns after a good freshman year. He threw for 2,789 yards and 17 touchdowns. Some Bulldog fans would like to see freshman QB D.J. Shockley given the chance to run the offense. Bulldogs offense averaged 432.8 yards per game. Bulldogs are said to have the best receivers in the SEC. Terrence Edwards needs 38 catches to become the schools all-time leader. Musa Smith will try to earn a spot in the backfield. He’s a quality back. Ronnie Powell showed some spring flashes. Offensive tackle and a preseason Lombardi Award nominee Jon Stinchcomb(6-6-277) will anchor the offensive line. Defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder’s 4-3 base scheme was effective against the run, ranking 15th nationally at 108 yards a game. Defense dominated the offense during the spring. First big test is Oct. 5th against Alabama in Alabama. Opens their season Aug. 31st against Clemson at home.

13. WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS—This team could very well be a sleeper. Cougars spread the field with four or five receivers, but they rely on a strong running game with the right personnel. Cougars need Jermaine Green, Jonathan Smith, and Lionel Arnold-all junior college transfers- to produce in the backfield. Senior QB Jason Gesser leads the wide open offense. He was first in passing in the PAC-10 in 2001. He threw for 2,729 yards and 25 touchdowns. He threw only 10 interceptions. Senior wide receiver Mike Bush(6-6) returns. He caught 46 passes last season. He averaged 20.8 yards per catch. Collin Henderson is a big threat guy at receiver. On defense the Cougars love to blitz. Safeties look for that interception. They had 26 in 2001. Defense accounted for eight touchdowns. DT Rien Long((6-6-290) leads this defense. Cougars also have one of the best cover cornerbacks in senior Marcus Trufant. Head coach Mike Price is entering his 14th season at the helm of the Cougars and is the dean of all Pac-10 coaches. First critical game isn’t until Oct. 5th and that will be against USC at home. Cougars open their season Aug. 31st against Nevada at home.

14.LOUISVILLE CARDINALS—Since John Smith’s arrival as coach in 1998, the Cardinals have boasted as one of the league’s most productive offenses. They averaged 30 points and 389 yards a game last season. Quarterback Dave Ragone will run this high octane offense. The 6-4 senior has 4.7 speed in the 40 yard dash and has increased his weight from 240 pounds to 255 pounds. He had a 60.3 percent completion percentage in 2001. He has 5,684 career passing yards, 50 TD’s and a 60.1 completion percentage could be one of the top five players picked in the 2003 NFL Draft. Lionel Gates who missed most of last season with a shoulder injury will take care of the running game. Cardinals defense may be one of their best in a long time. Ten of the 11 starters return from a unit that finished 10th nationally in points allowed(17.8 per game). Junior defensive end Dewayne White(6-3-277) in two years has collected 27 sacks and 41 tackles for loss. First big test comes Sept. 26th against Florida State at home. Opens their season Sept. 1st against Kentucky at home.


15.MICHIGAN WOLVERINES—Coach Lloyd Carr was disappointed with offense last season so he fired offensive coordinator Stan Parrish and replaced him with Terry Malone. Carr is 66-20 at Michigan in seven years. Junior QB John Navarre(6-6-236) has the edge over Spencer Brinton. Navarre threw for 17 TD’s in 2001. Carr may use both. Senior Ron Bellamy will be one of the top receivers along with junior Tyrece Butler. Michigan’s aggressive defense stopped the run in 2001, allowing just 90.6 yards per game. Wolverines led the Big Ten in sacks with 50. They had a school record 12 against Michigan State. Michigan got beat bad by Tennessee in the Citrus Bowl 45-17. They allowed Tennessee to pass for 406 yards. Senior OLB Victor Hobson(6-1-244) leads the defense. He had 80 tackles in 2001. DE Dan Rumishek(6-4-277) had a team high seven sacks. Michigan’s defense should be powerful in 2002/2003. Opens season Aug. 31st against Washington. Lost last season 23-18 to the Huskies.

16.OREGON DUCKS—QB Joey Harrington is gone. You know he will be missed. Jason Fife(6-4-216) or freshman Kellen Clemens will take the helm. At least they will have the luxury of a 1,000 yard rusher behind them in Onterrio Smith(5-11-195). Head coach Mike Bellotti has had five of his six quarterbacks go to the NFL. Senior wide receiver Keenan Howry could set an Oregon career record for receptions. In their standard 4-3 defense the Ducks like to load up to stop the run. Free safety Keith Lewis
roams the secondary seeking whom he may devour. Inside linebacker Kevin Mitchell(5-10-212) is tough at his position. First real test comes against Mississippi State in their first game Aug. 31st at home.

17.VIRGINIA TECH HOKIES—Hokies have new offensive coordinator in Byran Stinespring. He promises not to make many changes because the formula they’ve been using over the past few years has been working. Running back Lee Suggs is back after missing all of last season except for one game. In 2000 he rushed for 1,207 yards. If he stays healthy the offense will flourish. Sophomore Kevin Jones had a good freshman year running the ball. Rushed for 957 yards and five touchdowns. Quarterback Grant Noel figures to start. Behind him is Bryan Randall. Marcus Vick, younger brother of Michael Vick could find some playing time as a freshman. Shawn Witten who missed the second half of the season with a broken leg will be the top receiver. Junior Earnest Wilford will be available too. Defense must replace six starters. That unit finished second in the nation in total defense(237.9 yards per game). But there is plenty of talent and depth on defense. Nathaniel Adibi and Cols Colas will get plenty of playing time at the defensive end position. Colas is a former running back, who finished the season strong in 2001. He led the team with 17 quarterback hurries. First big test come Sept. 1st against LSU at home. Opens the season Aug. 25th against Arkansas State at home.

18.AUBURN TIGERS—Coach Tommy Tuberville is 1-6 overall against Alabama. If that doesn’t improve he won’t be around too long. He has two talented sophomore QB’s in Daniel Cobb(6-4-229) and Jason Campbell. Sophomore running back Carnell Williams will be the main back. He rushed for 614 yards last season with six TD’s. He may be the SEC’s best running back. He averaged 5.1 yards per carry. Robert Johnson is their leading receiver. Senior center Ben Nowland is Auburn’s most experienced lineman. Tigers have new defensive coordinator in Gene Chizik from Central Florida. They may go with a 3-4-4 look on many downs. Junior linebacker Dontarrious Thomas(6-4-223) is the star of the defense. First real test is their opening game on Sept. 2nd against USC at USC.

19.USC TROJANS—Offensive coordinator Norm Chow who was with BYU before brought in the spread formation, but was hampered with injuries to his running backs. QB Carson Palmer(6-5-225) had been expected to be a big star. This will be his last year to prove it. He threw for 2,567 yards in 2001. Coach Pete Carroll said Palmer had a great spring. Justin Fargas who played for Michigan will start at tailback. Trojans are strong at the wide receiver position with Kareem Kelly and Keary Colbert. The 4-3 scheme will be used on defense. Talented secondary led by Troy Polamalu. Opens season Sept. 2nd against Auburn at home.

20.PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS—Joe Paterno returns for his 36th season. He has an overall record of (327-96-3).Sophomore QB Zack Mills(6-2-215)emerged as a southpaw savior last season. Pulled out a dramatic win against Northwestern 38-35 to snap a 0-4 start. His good play help Penn State to a 5-2 finish. Bryant Johnson leads the receiver. He had 51 catches for 866 yards in 2001. Senior Larry Johnson is the tailback. Lombardi Award candidate Jimmy Kennedy(6-5-330) is the anchor of the defense at tackle. Larry Johnson led the Big-10 in kick returns with a 26.7 average. He also returned two blocks punts for touchdowns. First real test comes against Nebraska Sept. 14th at home. Opens their season Aug. 31st against Central Florida at home.

21.ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE

22.MARYLAND TERRAPINS

23.SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI GOLDEN EAGLES

24.MARSHALL THUNDERING HERD

25.SOUTH CAROLINA GAMECOCKS
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Old 08-04-2002, 10:59 PM   #2
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Great job, Keith! Very interested read to get me ready for the season. Bring it on!
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Old 08-09-2002, 12:47 AM   #3
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Man that was long! I have to say, I am impressed! Except Penn St. should not be there...
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Old 08-09-2002, 01:00 PM   #4
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I don't even think they should have polls to mid-season if not later! I mean how can a team be ranked #1 without even playing a game yet, and how can we tell that a team who is ranked #19 can't beat a team who is ranked #1. Preseason rankings are really nothing more than a favortism poll to make us as fans argue about who is ranked where. Many teams who are ranked in the lower part of the top 25 or not even ranked have to work much harder to get respect and a BCS game because of these preseason rankings!

There is no way Miami is #1 after losing 4 players in a secondary, a tight end who caught tons of passes, a running back who set the pace for the offense, and 3 offensive linemen who hardly ever allowed a sack, needless to say they lost 11 guys to the NFL.

Games should be played first and then rankings of teams should come out. I mean have any of these pollsters seen Miami, FSU, Ohio State or anyone play yet....No they haven't! I think preseason rankings are wrong and should be done away with!

Now it is ok for fans like us to make up polls, but many of our thoughts and our polls are based on what so called experts are saying without even seeing a team play. Making predictions are fun though, and I think Bama did a great job on his poll!
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Old 08-09-2002, 02:15 PM   #5
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Yes Miami is number one until they are beaten. They did lose some players, but so did the Arizona Diamondbacks and the LA Lakers over their championship years. All are still defending champions until they are beaten or knocked out of first for most the season. That is my point. Yes PreSeason rankings are made for discussions and debate basically. Most people enjoy it. if you don't, don't read them lol

Miami has not been beaten. If they win their first game this year they should be number one, then when they lose and if they do they should drop some.

Arizona has lost some game, but that is because they play 1 162 game schedule. they are in first place and the defending world champions. They are really at the top of the heap until they either not make the playoffs, or lose in the playoffs or lose in the World Series.
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Old 08-09-2002, 04:59 PM   #6
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You mae pefect sence I OWN THIS...It's all based on opinion. FOr all you know, the people who are makeing the pre-season poll, are just voteing for their fav team
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Old 08-09-2002, 07:11 PM   #7
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Well Bama, don't get me wrong I think you did a great job on this poll, and I enjoyed reading it! I was just stating my opinion on the actual poll they vote on for preseason college football.

And neither the Arizona Diamondbacks nor the Los Angeles Lakers lost nearly as much talent as Miami did just last season. I mean they had 3 of their 4 secondary players go in the first 26 picks. And to be honest their defense was based on that excellent secondary. And playing Florida, Tennessee, and FSU it is going to hurt knowing that the secondary will have all new faces and first year starters! Miami's offense should be ok and will be very productive, but they will tell you that their defensive secondary was a major plug for them winning the national title last season.

I understand your point on they should be ranked #1 until they are beaten, but I just think there are several teams better than them this upcoming season. And I think it is wrong for teams to be ranked before they actually play a game!

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Old 08-09-2002, 08:48 PM   #8
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What difference soes it make? the preseason polls don't mean anything so why not have fun with them. I think having the polls adds a lot to college football. And you talking about them right now proves that they add intereset to college football.

I love the polls!!!
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Old 08-09-2002, 09:16 PM   #9
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The difference Rick is, they have a bearing on what the BCS becomes and that is where the real problem is.

Just an example, if say 3 teams go undefeated over a course of a season and 2 of the 3 teams were highly ranked to start the season and they all played somewhat similar schedules, the one team that wasnt ranked to start the season, will never catch the other 2 in the polls.

Now just as another example. The last 2 years there have been one undefeated team and several teams with one loss. The BCS takes several things into factor, one of them being a compiliation of several polls. From there they have chosen there opponent for that undefeated team. Everyone one of those choices was subject to much debate and unfairness.

The only fair way, but not perfect, but still fairer then the one we have, is too have a playoff system. The BCS does not work and IT IS affected by polls, this is where polls become more then they should.
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Old 08-11-2002, 10:51 AM   #10
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I still love the polls.

Theres nothing better than sitting down to watch a game between two top five or top ten teams.
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