Blog Entry

The Poll Attacks

Posted on: November 28, 2011 2:28 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2011 2:44 pm
By Gary Parrish

Associated Press poll: Thanksgiving weekend is tricky.

Lots of family time.

Lots of shopping.

Good football on television.

It's easy to lose track of things in college basketball, I know. But my god. There are websites all over the place -- including, of course, -- where box scores from every game played can be found, and it just seems like AP voters ought to take a few minutes and look at them before submitting their ballots. If they did, the Poll Attacks would be much more difficult to file every week. As it is, this is simple stuff.

So thank you, Mark McCarter of the Huntsville Times.

You've made my job simple on this Monday.

And I hate that it's you because I like you and we go way back. But come on, man. You put Cincinnati 25th on your ballot despite the fact that the Bearcats are 3-2 with home losses to Presbyterian and Marshall. That's two home losses. To Presbyterian. And Marshall. What does Cincinnati have to do to get off your ballot? Would a loss to Miami-Ohio this week do it? What about two losses this week -- to Miami-Ohio on Tuesday and Georgia on Friday? Surely that would be enough, right?

Also, why no UNLV on your ballot?

The Rebels are 7-0 with a win over North Carolina.

That's slightly better than 3-2 with home losses to Presbyterian and Marshall.

Obviously, I could go on for another 300 words. But that's enough. Because the Houston Chronicle's Sam Khan voted Villanova 24th, and that's similarly silly and needs to be addressed. The Wildcats are 4-2 with neutral-court losses to Saint Louis (by 12 points) and Santa Clara (by one point). I suppose that's better than home losses to Presbyterian and Marshall, but not much better. I genuinely have no idea how Sam could still be ranking Villanova, but I also have no idea how Sam can rank Memphis seventh -- 12 spots of the Michigan team that dominated the Tigers and at least sixteen spots ahead of the Georgetown team that he didn't rank despite it also beating the Memphis team he still believes belongs in the top 10.

In fact, I don't even know why he'd rank Memphis at all right now.

I'll explain that next ...

Coaches poll: Memphis will win Conference USA.

The Tigers are too talented to do anything but win Conference USA.

But at some point, to some degree, the results have to matter, and the Tigers' results through four games don't suggest they are, at this moment, the top 10 team most believed they'd be in the preseason ... or even worthy of the No. 21 ranking the coaches gave them Monday. Memphis is 2-2 with a home win over an Atlantic Sun team (Belmont) and a double-overtime win on a neutral court over a team picked 11th in the SEC (Tennessee). The Tigers' losses are a double-digit defeat on a neutral court to No. 15 Michigan and an overtime loss to unranked Georgetown, also on a neutral court. Simply put, that's not good enough.

Now I know what you're thinking: How can rank two-loss FSU but not two-loss Memphis?

Answer: Florida State's two losses are better. And FSU deserves more of the benefit of the doubt. The Seminoles are 5-2. Their losses are an overtime loss to a team we have ranked 11th (Connecticut) and a five-point loss to a team we have ranked 22nd (Harvard). Beyond that, FSU's ranking isn't based on potential nearly as much as Memphis'. The Seminoles were good last season -- third in the ACC with an 11-5 league record and a trip to the Sweet 16 -- and they returned the bulk of that roster. Meantime, Memphis was awful last season. The Tigers went 10-6 in Conference USA, basically played well for just one week in El Paso, won the C-USA tournament and got the league's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. So their preseason ranking was always based more on recruiting rankings and the idea that they'd this season be more like the team that pushed Arizona to the buzzer in their postseason opener last season than the team that finished fourth in C-USA, and, again, I think they will eventually. But through four games, they haven't. And that's why I can't make sense of Memphis still being ranked this week when so many other teams deserve it more.

Like Harvard.

The Crimson are 6-0 with a win over Florida State.

Or Georgetown.

The Hoyas are 4-1 with the lone loss being a close loss to No. 14 Kansas.

And Georgetown beat Memphis.

How could anybody rank Memphis but not Georgetown right now?

That's baffling.

Either way, again, Memphis will be fine in time; I still believe that. The roster remains really, really talented. But should the Tigers be ranked 21st on Nov. 28 -- ahead of Saint Louis, FSU, Harvard and Georgetown? No, absolutely not. It really can't be justified by anything that's ever happened on a basketball court.

Since: Oct 18, 2011
Posted on: December 1, 2011 3:26 am

The Poll Attacks

Actually, KatinTexas is a Kentucky Wildcat fan...who honestly could care less about what Louisville is ranked, so long as the Cats win. I on the other hand...AM a Louisville fan. And if you read my response to KatinTexas' post, you'd realize I AM concerned about Vandy first! We're still waiting on the majority of our rotation to get healthy. And sadly, one of them is already lost for the season. Every year the Cards start the season with players injured. Like I said to KatinTexas, they must be trying to kill one another in practice.

Since: Sep 12, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2011 3:54 pm

The Poll Attacks

Plus, you need to worry about getting past Vandy first!!

Since: Sep 12, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2011 3:52 pm

The Poll Attacks


There's a whole lot of crazy stuff that will need to happen for Louisville to move up to #2 by New Years. First of all, my Ohio State Buckeyes will have to lose to somebody. And after watching what they did to Duke last night, I'm sorry to tell you it just ain't gonna happen!!

Since: Sep 10, 2006
Posted on: November 30, 2011 8:12 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Oct 11, 2007
Posted on: November 30, 2011 1:03 am

The Poll Attacks

I'm sorry, but just like in college football, early season rankings are vague guesswork that is hard to gauge.. you can write this article ripping on the way other people see the Top 25, but lets be honest, it is completely worthless. Most of the preseason rankings are based on the way various analysts see certain teams but until we have a better idea of how these teams play head to head we will have no idea how good any of these teams are. You can argue who should be the #1 overall or who should be in the top 25 and who should be out, but the beauty of college basketball (maybe not football) is that in due time, it should become clear. After two weeks of play, this article should not be written. It's completely pointless. 

Since: Oct 18, 2011
Posted on: November 30, 2011 12:35 am

The Poll Attacks

 "If we beat UNC, we could very easily play Louisville in a nationally televised #1-#2 game on New Years Eve.........ohhhhhhhhhhh Mama................"

KatinTexas, as a Louisville fan, I appreciate you're optimism of a 1 vs. 2 game on New Year's Eve. But as it stands, we're a walking infirmary. We have absolutely no experienced depth. Our players are dropping like flies. I'm a realist. And as much as it pains me to admit this, we're gonna limp through the month of December. Only by divine intervention will we be close to 100 percent by them time our teams meet.

I don't know what happens in a UofL practice, but it would appear that they're trying to kill one another.

Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: November 29, 2011 11:24 pm

The Poll Attacks

I'm sorry... Do you have the words "Louisville" and "#2" in the same sentence?

Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: November 29, 2011 8:54 pm


In spite of their "Beatles-like" popularity and new #1 status, this year's UK hasn't really been tested yet. With all due respect to Kansas. We'll find out where we are in the next four days. St. Johns will provide some tense moments, but at Rupp I doubt they can beat Kentucky. I'll say UK 78 - St Johns 71........Lamb blows up.......

UNC however has every motivation on earth to let us have it. After knocking them out of the NCAA Tourney last year these Heels have been stewing for 8+ months. They have to be the favorite in this game; Harrison Barnes is fine, they have a deep and more experienced team.  UK plays St. Johns on a very odd Thursday night game, they play UNC at noon Saturday....not much recovery time. Personally, I hate playing at noon. This one really concerns me.....UNC is exceptionally good this year. I wish UNLV hadn't kicked that dog.........I'll just wish for a 88-87 OT win.......Terrence Jones goes off.....

  If we beat UNC, we could very easily play Louisville in a nationally televised #1-#2 game on New Years Eve.........ohhhhhhhhhhh Mama................

Since: Sep 3, 2009
Posted on: November 29, 2011 5:55 pm

Go Robbie

Go Robbie Hummel, player of the year, sportsman of the year

Since: Oct 2, 2009
Posted on: November 29, 2011 5:22 pm

The Poll Attacks

Last i knew the Orleans Arena where they played and UNLV are both in vegas so im not sure how that would be a neutral site

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