What an deliciously college football-y weekend of college football. A wealth of absurdist upsets (Bret Biels, lulz) but very few teams really showing us their wallets that said bad mother f***er (aside from those we already suspected). Accordingly ranking teams in this weekend is an exercise I like to summarize with the following: 1-10, teams we can get behind, 11-25: random number generator. Accordingly, here's Land-Grant Holy Land's third BlogPoll Top 25 ballot of 2012:
"Analysis" after the jump:
1-5: Alabama probably didn't get enough credit for their thorough dismantling of a bowl caliber team in Western Kentucky. Pitching a shutout is a (further) testament to just how beastly that defense is, and A.J. McCarron looked far more than merely a competent game manager against the Hilltoppers. LSU also laid the smack down on another bowl team (and a BCS conference one at that) in Washington, and USC fought off Syracuse and the elements to remain perfect on the year. However, the loss of starting center Khaled Holmes on an already thin o-line could spell trouble for the Trojans.
Texas? Well, unlike another team we'll get to in a bit, I still foresee plenty of circumstances where that elite defense gets them in position to play for another national title. But I watched a few quarters of yesterday's New Mexico affair on the Longhorn Network and started to second guess myself. And then third guess myself. And well, it's all random posturing and guess work anyways, but for now, I've demoted them a few spots. A loss to Ole Miss in The Grove would validate my decision and allow me to further plunge them. An emphatic win might mean they secure their position until one of the teams in front of them checks out.
6-10: I really, really didn't want to have to bump Ohio State up any. But alas, here we are. West Virginia hops Oklahoma (who granted handled their opponent precisely the way they were supposed to) and Georgia, who came on strong in the latter portion of Saturday night's game against SEC newcomers Missouri but left much to be desired through the first two quarters and change. Hey, at least I didn't demote them any.
11-15: Clemson? Hate this team. South Carolina? Hate this team. Virginia Tech? Hate this team. Sparty? Want to hate this team, but that defense…well, I still hate that offense. Stanford? Guh. The antithesis of impressive in week one. They handled a BCS side (well, perhaps in name only) with relative ease Saturday night, but… all in all I'd almost rather take a flier on Rich Rod's baby WVU outfit out in Tucson.
16-20: TCU goes up a bunch of spots because…um...well...yeah. Kansas State actually did show us something and though the early ballots don't reflect it, I've been high on the Wildcats since last season. Their impressive demolishment of the Miami Hurricanes leaves me no choice but to give them a sizable LGHL ballot bump. I'm embarassed to move the Wolverines up any at all after that defensive effort against a service academy, but alas. Florida made A&M really look like something for about three quarters and change as well, but undefeated is undefeated, I suppose. Notre Dame? lol. Sure, whatever.
21-25: You get a loss. You get a loss. You get a loss. You… you don't play anyone the rest of the season. And you? Not sold on you, but you looked pretty good a week ago so… sure, why not. Our buy low on Arkansas proved to be a mirage (though to be fair, you can't bank on Tyler Wilson, whom some NFL scouts have ranked higher on their draft boards than Matt Barkley, to go down with a concussion). Alas, that defense (led by former Buckeyes assistant Paul Haynes and Taver Johnson) looked like the absolute worst elements of the 2011 Buckeyes D and nothing like the competent one we saw against K-State in January's Cotton Bowl.