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Observations and Punditry
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Woody's Ramblings
Thursday, January 11, 2007

By Woody Peele

"Peele Poll" validates Gators' crown

By Woody Peele
©2007 Bonesville.net
All rights reserved.

The Gators of Florida reign supreme as college footballís national champions as proclaimed by their victory over previously unbeaten Ohio State and the polls.

And thatís just what came out of my computer when I ran the final listings that are based on success against strength of schedule.

The Gators finished the season with a 13-1 record and earned 6,288 points. Points are awarded for each victory a team gains, with additional points awarded each time one of its victims wins a game, down to the third level of competition.

As many teams are doing now, playing a Division I-AA team and winning doesnít help you that much. No points are awarded for the third level. And if you happen to play a Division II or III opponent ó no D I-A team has done that in the last few years ó you only get first level points.

My computer poll is based on a suggestion made years ago by then-Arkansas coach Lou Holtz, the papa of our own East Carolina head coach Skip Holtz. The elder Holtz, whose team didnít earn the No. 1 ranking despite being unbeaten, said a three-two-one awarding of points should be used, tied to success against the schedule rather than a subjective vote by media or coaches.

A friend of mine and I put together the program, then tweaked it a bit for a few years before coming up with just what we believe is the right formula.

When this season's final game was finished, Southern California ended up in the No. 2 slot with 5,408 points, followed by Louisville ó yes, the Cardinals ó in No. 3 with 5,168. Ohio State tumbled to the No. 4 position with 4,736, followed by Auburn with 4,600.

The second five included, in order, Boise State, Michigan, LSU, Boston College and ECU opponent West Virginia.

The second 10 were Oklahoma, Rutgers, California, Oregon State, Texas, Wake Forest, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Virginia Tech and Brigham Young.

Rounding out the top 25 were Georgia, Notre Dame, UCLA, Arkansas and Conference USA member Houston.

East Carolina closed the season ranked in the 50th position.

Others from C-USA included Southern Miss at No. 42, Tulsa at 45th, Southern Methodist tied for 62nd, Texas-El Paso at 77th, Tulane at 82nd, UAB tied for 85th, Marshall at 88th, Central Florida at 98th, and Memphis at 110th.

In addition to Wake's No. 16 ranking, other Atlantic Coast Conference teams were Georgia Tech at 27th, Maryland at 29th, Clemson at 32nd, Florida State tied for 38th, Miami at 46th, N.C. State at 64th, Virginia at 73rd, North Carolina tied for 103rd, and Duke, one of two teams to go winless, tied for 118th.

The other winless team was Florida International.

ECU Papa Johnís.com Bowl opponent, South Florida, finished tied with Florida State for 38th, and Navy closed out in the No. 61 position.

I realize that there are those who wonít buy into this ranking system, but thatís okay. Itís just a simple ranking. If you play tough opponents and win, you go up. If you play a cupcake schedule and win, you donít. Itís that easy.

Send an e-mail message to Woody Peele.

Dig into Woody Peele's Bonesville archives.

02/23/2007 02:44:50 PM
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