Thursday, October 04, 2007

The Controversial Battle for Poll Position

Greg Hansen of the Arizona Daily Star raises the question: Did demographics play into Louisiana State leapfrogging USC for the top spot this week in the Associated Press poll?

Each team won last week. USC slugged it out with Washington, eventually scoring a 27-24 victory in a madhouse in Seattle. LSU was lethargic in the first half and finally put away a poor Tulane team, 34-9. But that victory somehow convinced voters to nudge the Tigers into the top spot. The last time the AP's No. 1 team fell out of the top spot after a victory came in 2002, when a listless Miami performance cost the Hurricanes their No. 1 spot.

Hansen notes that the AP poll includes 14 voters from Southeastern Conference states and only seven from Pacific 10 Conference states.

He writes: "USC’s mini-plunge in the AP poll is meaningless in the bigger picture of the BCS organization. And it is a non-story in almost all areas of the country except, perhaps, Los Angeles.

"But can you imagine if LSU had fallen from its No. 1 perch even while undefeated? Fueled by the Eastern [and vast SEC] media clout, it would have generated great media play."

1 comment:

Seamus Furr said...

When I first moved to PAC-10 country from the east coast, I had a lot of skepticism towards the constant whining about "eastern bias" in polls and power rankings. After seven years here, I understand.