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Trivia Tidbit Of The Day -- College Football's Associated Press Poll.

Rejoice, for football season is upon us.

The pre-season Associated Press (AP) poll is out, and it puts Southern California on top, followed by Texas, Tennessee, Michigan, and Louisiana State. But just how accurate are those pre-season projections?

Not very. But not awful, either.

Take a gander at how many teams beginning in the top 5 (any spot, 1 through 5) ended up in the top 5 (any spot, 1 through 5):

collegefootballpoll.gif
-click for larger version-

Since 1980, the pre-season AP poll has never chosen the five teams that have landed in the top 5 at year's end. Never have AP voters chosen even four of the end-of-year top 5 teams.

On the other hand, only once did the pre-season AP poll choose zero of the teams that ended up in the top 5.

Eight times, the pre-season AP poll chose three teams that ended up in the top 5.

Ten times, the AP voters chose two teams that ended up in the top 5.

And six times, the AP voters chose one team that ended up in the top 5.

Some other interesting tidbits:

*Over the past 25 years of AP polling, the pre-season #1 won the AP title four times: OU in 1985, FSU in 1993 and 1999, and USC in 2004.

*The pre-season #2 became champs twice over the past 25 years: Nebraska in 1995 and Miami in 2001.

*The champion came from outside the pre-season top five entirely 14 times over the past 25 years.

You can't exactly blame the AP voters for their less-than-sparkling record. Often, a pre-season poll merely reflects how a team ended the previous season. Also, sometimes team mature throughout the season, getting better each week, while other teams "bonk" because of a key injury, or a scandal, or some other unforeseeable distraction.

But the odds are pretty decent that only about two of the teams in the pre-season top 5 will be there at the end of the season. Something to think about as you settle in for the NCAA football season.

The AP poll, incidentally, is no longer part of the controversial Bowl Championship Series (BCS) formula, after formally withdrawing earlier this year.

Will Franklin trivializes at WILLisms.com.


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Comments (8)

You might want to take a lo... (Below threshold)
MH:

You might want to take a look at Chris Stassen's web site. He has done alot of analysis on preseason rankings from various groups and then how their rankings measured up by the end.

http://www.stassen.com/

Doesn't matter. LSU 's gonn... (Below threshold)

Doesn't matter. LSU 's gonna win the whole shebang this season.

Ah who cares about College ... (Below threshold)
Robert:

Ah who cares about College Football.....Where is the NFL...Dallas! Dallas!

College football is know to... (Below threshold)
MH:

College football is know to be dominate.

College >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> NFL

Don't forget, with 117 NCAA... (Below threshold)

Don't forget, with 117 NCAA Div 1 teams, it's not like it's easy. And many of those top 5 teams never play each other. It's so competitive that a team that legitimately should be in the top 5, expected to be a one-loss team, loses an early preseason game to end up with 2 losses, and drops out of the top five. And as you say, preseason polls are many times more a factor of the last season than this season.

But all I can really say is, it looks like a good year for my Boilermakers. What will definitely be one of the top 3 (and possibly #1) defense in the Big Ten, a high-powered offense, and we don't have Michigan or Ohio State on the schedule this year. I think we could finish 10-1 and maybe squeak into that top 5!

Doesn't matter. LS... (Below threshold)
Doesn't matter. LSU 's gonna win the whole shebang this season.

Not with Lester Miles as your head coach. He'll have a For Sale sign in the front of his house by November.

I can hardly contain my exc... (Below threshold)
fatman:

I can hardly contain my excitement. The prospect of young men proving their manliness by putting on forty pounds of protective gear to go out and play rugby. It just thrills me to the marrow.

ehI'm following the ... (Below threshold)

eh
I'm following the World Cup qualifying matches instead
GO USA!!!!

Currently, we're ranked 2nd in the CONCACAF bracket
(that is, north, central american and caribbean) just a single point behind Mexico, and we will play Mexico next here in the States on September 3rd.

USA! USA! USA! Germany 2006 all the way!!




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