No more preseason polls folks this is your first edition of the ITB Blogpoll and that means awesomeness is going to ensue. After a rough weekend that saw my legs become jelly for lack of tailgate training I got to put pen to paper and come up with this, your Week Two ITB Blogpoll:
In The Bleachers Ballot - Week 2
|2||Boise St. Broncos||2|
|4||Alabama Crimson Tide||-3|
|5||Florida St. Seminoles||1|
|7||Texas A&M Aggies||--|
|10||South Carolina Gamecocks||-2|
|11||Ohio St. Buckeyes||3|
|12||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||--|
|14||Virginia Tech Hokies||2|
|15||Mississippi St. Bulldogs||3|
|16||Michigan St. Spartans||-1|
|18||Arizona St. Sun Devils||4|
|20||West Virginia Mountaineers||3|
|21||Central Florida Knights||3|
|24||South Florida Bulls||--|
|Dropouts: Notre Dame Fighting Irish, TCU Horned Frogs, Georgia Bulldogs|
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Three newcomers thanks to TCU, UGA and Notre Dame being all sorts of out of the poll. TCU's defense absolutely imploded and even as they tried to "pull it together" as the game grew long it was just dirty how abusive Baylor was to that unit. The Dawgs are out. For the first time, and I never thought this day would come, I've soured on Mark Richt and have just one word for the effort, the play calls and the game Saturday night, ugh. Notre Dame, I don't think you're as bad as you looked Saturday and I'm not mad, I'm just disappointed in you. Get it together so I don't look stupid in front of company.
Baylor, South Florida and Houston are the new kids in the pool and they're in based upon the order in which they've impressed me. Baylor the most, then South Florida and lastly Houston sneaks in, not because they beat a bad UCLA team but because I had them on the outside to open the year and with Notre Dame disappointing me they got a shot to move up.
Moving On Down:
Clearly Oregon was going to have to move down the list but how much? Five spots. The Ducks got handled up front and looked pedestrian on both sides of the ball. This game was ugly but the Ducks drop five because, quite honestly, LSU impressed more than Oregon disappointed. I knew they would have issues on the lines and their defense had holes. Against the bulk of the teams in the nation their tempo and offensive skill is capable of overcoming that defense, against LSU and a few others they get abused, as they did Saturday night.
The rest of the teams on the move down all got wins over the weekend so this makes for a touchy subject with people. In the case of Michigan State color me unimpressed with their effort. They struggled mightily with Youngstown State in what was an ugly contest. For the Gamecocks I've got mixed feelings. Seeing Stephen Garcia and lead their scoring barrage was nice but whew did they really look out of sorts at times.
Bama and OU are next on the move down. Originally I was just going to flop OU and Bama in the #1 and #2 spots moving the Tide down one for their remarkably uninspired play. Four interceptions out of the quarterbacks, neither truly "wowing" the masses got the Tide slotted just underneath Oklahoma, the rest of the move down sort of just "happened" thanks to a couple teams really impressing this guy.
Moving On Up:
Everyone moves up. Not going to take the time to go over all the minor change but I will highlight a few teams that impressed me and I feel deserve a little shine:
Wisconsin - All Russell Wilson Everything apparently gained some new fans as the young man got his ball on and people got a chance to see that he wasn't going to Wisconsin to change their offensive approach, rather he was there to add a new dimension to the Brett's Bullies.
Virginia Tech - Sure it was an FCS team but given the transition at the quarterback position and the demons from a season ago I felt it was critical to see how the Hokies performed in this scenario. They looked might damn good.
Boise State - Gets a bump here into the second spot. Don't freak out folks, they will have to keep the spot for the year and as their wins become less impressive other teams can pass them. On the field they looked solid and as always Chris Petersen's boys were ready to fight.
LSU - The most impressive team in week one. Glad I held on to this pick because the Bayou Bengals did find a running game and they did dominate up front on defense which was the key to the game. Yes, Oregon through the football but that isn't the cornerstone of this Chip Kelly attack and with the Ducks only going for 9 yards on the ground it shows me LSU's defensive line is ready to play. The run game, wow. That helped spring them up the rankings and we'll see how long they can hold on to the top spot with Bama taking on Penn State this weekend and several very big contests on the schedule in the near future.
We've got several big games this week in the Slate of Eight and make sure you're in the In The Bleacher's Pick'em Pool.