The other 15 first-place votes for Florida in the Week 9 BlogPoll may be based mostly on Florida's résumé, but I'm sincerely beginning to think that the Gators might be the nation's best team. And I'm also starting to think Alabama's not as good as we all think.
Alligator Army Ballot - Week 8
|3||Alabama Crimson Tide||-2|
|4||Kansas St. Wildcats||-1|
|6||Notre Dame Fighting Irish||-1|
|8||Oregon St. Beavers||-2|
|10||Texas Tech Red Raiders||9|
|11||Florida St. Seminoles||--|
|12||South Carolina Gamecocks||-4|
|13||Texas A&M Aggies||2|
|14||Mississippi St. Bulldogs||2|
|17||Louisiana Tech Bulldogs||--|
|19||Ohio St. Buckeyes||-5|
|21||Rutgers Scarlet Knights||--|
|24||Duke Blue Devils||--|
|Dropouts: West Virginia Mountaineers, Cincinnati Bearcats, Western Kentucky Hilltoppers|
SB Nation BlogPoll College Football Top 25 Rankings
For as long as I've been writing about college football, I've been wanting a BlogPoll vote; I wanted to fill it out by the same sorts of terms that Sunday Morning Quarterback's Matt Hinton did his. Here's this week's version of the chart that is the crux of his calculus every week:
The thing that I don't remember from the past: What the boldface and italics mean. But here's the thing: Alabama's best win is against a team Hinton has ranked No. 22; Florida has three wins over teams in his top 14.
I don't have Michigan ranked; I have Florida with three wins over teams in my top 13. And I think the Gators' best win is the second-best win in the country this year, and their second-best the third-best; Kansas State's win over Oklahoma in Norman remains the best.
I think Florida's offense isn't as good as Alabama's, but that the Florida defense might be better than 'Bama's: After all, it's been tested more, by better teams and better players and bigger games, and hasn't allowed a touchdown at home in more than a month. Florida's getting some production out of its offense, and hasn't needed more than a little in a while. And Florida's special teams play appears to be the best in the country, by some margin.
Is Florida demonstrably better than 'Bama — or Oregon, or Kansas State? No. But I can't see a lot of daylight between any of those four teams (Notre Dame's fifth, but Notre Dame's offense is ... less than good), and Florida's got the best wins. So I'm enthroning the Gators again.