It’s time baby! It’s top 15 team time! Hey, top 15 teams in the nation, come on up and get your respect. LSU, great job. Alabama, another fine performance in the end. Hey, where is everyone else? Oh yea, that’s right, everyone else sucks by comparison.
Seriously, I’m K.M. Venne, and I’m doing the top 15 teams in the college football land with my main man Bryan, and I’m THIS close to demanding we break the SSR into two posts. Day one we post who is better, LSU or Alabama. Day two we talk about all the other teams that couldn’t carry the jocks of the Tigers or Tide. This is getting ludicrous. I predicted an LSU/Alabama national title game to start the year,and people said I was insane. And frankly, I’ve done some insane things in the SSR so far this year. I’ve hyped A&M, Baylor, South Carolina, Wisconsin, but let’s look at this objectively. I have to rank the best 15 teams out of the 120 FBS schools. Of those 120 schools, only two are elite. If I picked the totally wrong team to put 8 or 10 or something, who gives a damn? 8, 10, 15, 32, 69, 111, whatever Memphis is (245 I think, below a lot of high schools, and yes they won this week, I’m mocking them anyway because I can), you ain’t one or two, and you don’t deserve to be one or two. NOBODY is in LSU and Alabama’s class, or the class below them. Not to disrespect everyone, some of these teams between 3 and 15 are very good, able to beat anyone else not named LSU or Alabama, but none of them are staying within 2 scores of LSU or Bama on their best day.
Don’t get me wrong, read this anyway. I am so angry at some of these teams I am going to pop off on them ruthlessly. So is Bryan. We got darts to throw and we are going to hit some bullseyes. Just don’t get confused about the ordinal fashion of these rankings. 3 is not 1 spot worse then 2. 3 is 20 spots worse then 2. It is known, I’ve been saying it since week 1, Bryan caught on real quick after leaving the Oklahoma train well before you did, and we will say it all season long. You say we are a broken record? We’re the only record that had the right tune at the start. And those missteps we’ve made (me more then Bryan, to be fair), they don’t matter. Only the top 2 matter.
1. LSU Tigers (Bryan: 1st, K.M: 1st)- 30 points
Bryan: Just more dominance from the LSU Tigers, this time unleashing hell on Auburn without Ware or Mathieu. Entered as 22.5 point favorites and you’d have to be a damn fool to think they wouldn’t cover that against a one-dimensional Auburn offense. O, I picked Auburn? (pause…..pause….). Now they have a bye week to get ready for the 1 vs. 2 matchup of the century. You say Nebraska-Oklahoma was the game of the century, well I’m taking that and raising you this matchup as game of the bi-century. Haha, yup, you were ready to pounce on me for making the mistake of calling it the game of the century in a new century. Is it obvious I’m bored as hell writing about LSU? How many weeks in a row can you write the same thing about the same team. It’s almost here. Dear god, November 5th is almost here.
Trending: Nowhere for next week’s poll. Down after. It’s a damn shame one of the best teams I’ve seen in the last 5-10 years won’t even be the best team in its own division of its conference.
K.M: WE WANT BAMA! WE WANT BAMA. You damn right we do. Listen, my LSU homerism knows no bounds. Everyone here knows I am a big LSU fan. LSU isn’t even my team, Miami is, but I support LSU, because if you don’t have an SEC team, what the hell do you do on Saturdays? Do you watch the ACC Network? The ACC Network broadcasts in 1.080 low-as-hell defination. You ever watch the NHL Network and they cut to a game, but they show you the terrible camera shots they show on the jumbotron? It looks like a minor league baseball game aesthetically. Even THAT is better then the ACC network. Listen, I got next week to tell you all about the biggest game I can remember since the glory days of Miami and Florida State. This is going to be HUGE. So wait for it, bastards.
Trending: Nowhere. After that? You’ll have to wait. I may surprise you, you never know.
2. Alabama Crimson Tide (K.M: 2nd, Bryan: 2nd)- 28 points
K.M: ROLL TIDE. ROLL TIDE. AR-O-ELL-ELL TEE-I-DEE-E. ROLL TIDE. I heard that every damn time the Tide ran a play in the second half against Tennessee. Why? Because Alabama got a first down on every play. What a beatdown they laid on the Vols in the second half. I should be mad at Tennessee for a disgraceful non-cover, but I’m not. For two reasons. First, I’m the idiot that went against Bama. Secondly, they did what they should have done, beat the hell out of a hapless Vols team with a terrible scrub of a quarterback in Matt Simms. Tennessee deserved what they got, they should have got it sooner. I enjoyed when the announcer said Dooley was happy to go into the half “down 6-6″. It was a misuse of words, but felt so appropriate. Bama, you are wanted. Do you accept the challenge?
Trending: Nowhere. After that? You’ll have to wait. I may surprise you, you never know. You did, however, know I was going to type that. I am very lazy and uncreative with my trending section.
Bryan: Go to hell Alabama. Actually, no F*** you Tennessee. What the hell was that? TWENTY-NINE AND A HALF point favorites. Tied at half. And you don’t cover? Vols are a joke. Derek Dooley should be Philip Fulmer’d. Did that team roll over and quit or did that team roll over and quit? Matt Simms is the sorriest excuse of a QB I’ve seen in a long time. Then they waste a redshirt on a promising QB from what I’m told to hand the ball off on a play they fumble. If that doesn’t sum up 2011 Tennessee football I don’t know what does. No more betting against Bama or LSU. One week was enough. O, 85 point favorite over Mississippi St. on the road in a few weeks? I’ll lay 100 with Bama please. Update: Alabama is the best team in America. They’ll remain so all year.
Trending: Level then up. We just covered this. LSU’s dropping their first game of the year in Tuscaloosa on the 5th. Whether they can get back into the NCG race will have to be determined after the fact.
3. Oklahoma State Cowboys (Bryan: 3rd, K.M: 3rd)- 26 points
Bryan: I promised you 5th if you went to Mizzou and won. You went there and laid woodshed to a Mizzou Tigers team who I have to just drop any faith in at this point. And what do you know, not only do I deliver on my vow to have you jump Boise but the Sooners and Badgers fall. You’re sitting pretty. Win out and you play for the national title in my book. It appears K.M’s love for you was just a year early. With a win over A&M already, the Pokes SHOULD be unbeaten going into Bedlam. If they can’t beat Baylor and Kansas St. in their own back yard then they don’t deserve to play for title. Weeden continues to have a great season and they’ve developed a nice complementary run game behind Joseph Randle. Pokes are in a good spot.
Trending: They’ll be #2 after November 5th if they’re unbeaten. Haven’t figured out where I’m putting 1-loss LSU yet, lot depends on that game, but won’t be ahead of Pokes.
K.M: I still can’t get over the fact this team utterly stole a win against Texas A&M. Is this the #3 team in the land? I don’t see any question of that fact. But they needed a lot of luck and a lot of Mike Sherman being a terrible coach (Trust me, I used to be a Packers fan, I know how terrible Sherman is) to still be unbeaten. This is what I am talking about when I talk about the cliff between two and three. I love Weeden and Blackmon. I think Weeden is the second best QB in college football in fact. That speaks to the quality of this Pokes team, a team I am still somewhat fond of for their exciting style of play. But they stole a win vs. Texas A&M, which speaks to the quality they are not, which is the quality of LSU and Alabama. Oklahoma State, I will probably move you into the top 2 if you stay undefeated. But barring either Bama or LSU laying a stinker (and it would probably have to be Bama at home with their lesser resume, honestly), I will NOT do it UNTIL you go undefeated. If you pull off a perfect record, I cannot deny you, but until you do, I can, and I likely will. Shoulda lost to the Aggies…
Trending: Level for a long time until they win out or lose, barring the unexpected.
T-4. Clemson Tigers (K.M: 4th, Bryan: 5th)- 23 points
K.M: I got respect for UNC’s program. I think they got a good coach and are usually prepared for their opponents. They may well have been prepared for Clemson. But Clemson punched their teeth in. I’m becoming a slight fan of this Clemson team. I hope they raise the ACC’s profile. They scare me, not because of the players they have, just the name on the front of the jersey. We all know Clemson’s reputation, sooner or later they Clemson it up. I hope this is the year they pull it off. They are in Okie State’s boat to me, if they win out, I will probably move them into the top 2 (assuming Okie State loses). Probably. I make no guarantees with this team like I do Okie State, an undefeated Okie State will have a resume I cannot deny. Undefeated Clemson? I’ll cross that road when I come to it, assuming the Earth doesn’t stop spinning if that actually happens.
Trending: Level for me.
Bryan: Pure domination. Game wasn’t even as close as it appeared. 21-point win and it was 35 before Clemson emptied the bench. Where was that NFL talent UNC supposedly has on its defense? You wouldn’t have known it watching Clemson go up and down the field on them. The Tigers defense that was deserving of ripping after the Maryland game had two TDs and forced too many turnovers to count. This was supposed to be “the best defense Clemson has seen this year.” We hung 60 on it. This offense is too damn dominant. There’s too many weapons to account for. We scored 59 with NO RUN GAME. 36 rushes for 77 yards. And it’s not as if we’re a team who can’t run the ball. We’re 39th in the country in rushing. Ellington went off the week before. We can beat you however you want us to beat you. Great run D? Fine, we’ll throw it 50 times. O your secondary is strong? Here you go Andre Ellington. South Carolina the last game of the year is all that should stand between an unbeaten regular season before the ACC CG.
Trending: Up. They’ll jump Boise in my poll with a win at Georgia Tech next week. GT isn’t even a good win anymore, but it’s another road win which is one of the few question marks I have on this team and Boise has UNLV. Boise can win by a billion and it will do nothing for me. Nobody behind you will leap you with a win next week, not even K St.
T-4. Boise St. Broncos (Bryan: 4th, K.M: 5th)- 23 points
Bryan: “And nowwww, the end is nearrr, and so I faceee, the FINALLL CURTAIN!!!” Thanks Frank, I’ll take it from here. That’s right Boise St. As I told you weeks ago, your stay was coming to an end. Fortunately for you Wisconsin and Oklahoma fell so you stay pat. But next week will be Clemson and Stanford and Oregon are coming for you too. If Sparty keeps winning, they’ll trot past you. It’s not your fault the Mountain West isn’t very good. You need a ton of help outside your own play. Georgia has to win the SEC East and possibly SEC as a whole. Tulsa has to win CUSA. Toldeo winning MAC would be big help. You just played a tight game with an Air Force team TCU dominated. Just doesn’t do anything for me. Now UNLV? Jesus…fortunately for you the SSR isn’t included in the BCS. Because we’d be your outlier by year’s end. Let the plummet continue.
Trending: We just covered this. Down, and then down some more. I’m not sure you can actually do anything to help your cause. You’re literally entirely reliant on the other teams around you as well as who you’ve played.
K.M: I’m so dropping this team soon. I was going to tank them two spots, but Oklahoma and Wisconsin lost, so now I got to leave them level, deny them any more spots, but not drop them. Soon this will change. You don’t scare me, Boise. You better pray to your blue Gods you don’t make the national championship game. Louisiana will be the final resting place of your program if you face Bama or LSU for the title. You will be DESTROYED. 30 point win, guaranteed. Listen Boise, you got a good thing going. You never get a chance, so nobody knows you CAN’T win a national title. You are like the backup QB. Everyone loves you (except me, my heart is black as coal). But you better never get your day to prove you are what people make you out to be, because you aren’t. Just keep being who you are. If you get a national title chance, decline it. You’re FAR better off being who you are then trying to be what you think you want to be. Stay a myth, because your reality doesn’t match your reputation.
Trending: *cartoon falling sound*
T-6. Stanford Cardinal (K.M: 6th, Bryan: 7th)- 19 points
K.M: I like Stanford. I think they will handle USC, but USC did look decent vs. Notre Dame. That game will be enough to justify me overranking you for a long portion of this year. But you are losing to Oregon, then dropping. You are a quality team that I respect, but you won’t be undefeated. Talk of Stanford’s chances to play for the national title bore me. Might as well talk about K-State, because neither team is going to go undefeated, so all discussion is a waste of your time and breath. Quality side, but this is about your ceiling for the polls. No shame in it, it is what it is.
Trending: Chilling until Oregon.
Bryan: Impressive showing vs Washington. Putting up the 65 was nice but Washington gives up points in bunches to everyone. Didn’t think 65, but figured 40′s was a given. The defense locked down a Huskies offense who had been scoring points on anyone. It was your first win over a team with a winning record so there’s still work to be done before I do too much more with you. In reality you only jumped Arkansas and moved up otherwise because of losses. But nonetheless, certainly a worthy performance that deserves praising. The Stanford run game gashed a Huskies defense all night. They get a major break from USC’s win over Notre Dame as now they’ll once again be a split national ABC game on Saturday night along with Clemson, a night that will give each team a chance to impress pollsters.
Trending: Well seeing as I picked Stanford to lose to USC and Oregon pre-season, you’d think I’m trending them down, but not this week. They should beat USC and if they do so, I’ll likely jump them over Oregon seeing as Oregon will have another snoozer against Wazzu. Still think this is the 2nd best team in the PAC-12.
T-6. Oregon Ducks (Bryan: 6th, K.M: 7th)- 19 points
Bryan: See Boise. It was Colorado. While a win over Arizona St with James and Thomas not able to play (Thomas for a half) was impressive, this does nothing for me. A win over a team that probably won’t win a game in PAC-12 play unless the beat Utah. The Ducks are sitting pretty though. Chip Kelly played this flawlessly. Ironically I said they were dead in the NCG race a few weeks ago and Kelly would be best served sitting James until the Stanford game. With the Sooners and Badgers going down, if the Ducks beat Stanford, they may be a Clemson and Oklahoma State loss from being in the thick of the NCG discussion. Would pollsters put this team in over LSU if Bama is waiting or create a rematch? One wouldn’t think so. Still, all signs point to a one game season on the 12th of November. Should win out till they get there and if they do, should AT WORST play in the Rose Bowl.
Trending: Down slightly. Stanford will jump you. Michigan State if they go to Nebraska may jump you. But fear not Ducks fans. My respect for you has been consistent all year and has not wavered. I’ve kept you pretty much in the top 10 all year over many unbeaten teams. I respect the hell out of you. Don’t worry about the next two weeks. You make me look good and beat Stanford, I will be very nice to you in this poll.
K.M: Colorado is so bad it’s not worth even talking about. So I won’t. You know the Oregon drill, better then everyone they play except the one team that only one team may be better then, but so much better then everyone outside Stanford it’s hard to get a firm grip on them. I give them the benefit of the doubt, I think they deserve it. End of Oregon story for this week.
Trending: Up after you beat Stanford.
8. Kansas St. Wildcats (K.M: 8th, Bryan: 10th)- 14 points
K.M: I still can’t believe in this team. How did Miami lose to them? You know the sad thing? Miami is 3 plays from being undefeated. Get the yard vs. K-State, stop the 4th down pass vs. Maryland, and stop Virginia Tech on 4th down, and Miami hasn’t lost a game. Sure, most homers say “Well, if this hadn’t happened, we’d have won” and it sounds stupid, but I hate Jacory Harris and Al Golden, so I’m not inclined to give the Canes the benefit of the doubt. But seriously, 3 plays from being undefeated. Scary thought. What, this is a K-State section? Why should I care? They are about to lose 2 out of 3, maybe even 3 straight. THEY ARE WHO I THINK THEY ARE. JUST WAIT.
Trending: *sound of a stone sinking in a pond*
Bryan: Well at this point we know what Kansas St is. There’s no more fooling people about their credentials. Blowing out Kansas is the equivalent of beating Michael J. Fox in a stand-still contest. But nonetheless we get our chance now. We know they’re very good. Are they great? 3 games in 3 weeks vs Sooners, Pokes and Aggies. 1st and last at home. They win even 2 and I can’t fathom this team not being top 10. Still nonetheless, you have to think the end is near for the Wildcats. They would have had a better chance against an unbeaten Sooners team in my mind than against one coming off the crushing loss. Love what Dabo Swinney has done, but I firmly believe Chad Morris deserves more credit than Swinney. Wrap up the COY award, put a bow on it and ship it to Bill Snyder. He’d probably piss on it. Guy doesn’t care, just wins football games.
Trending: Down. They’ll drop 2 of their next 3 and I’ll consider keeping them in the SSR at the bottom. But they’re out of the national championship race and top 10 soon. Schedule far too daunting for any team to play 3 weeks straight.
9. Michigan State Spartans (Bryan: 9th, K.M: 10th)- 13 points
Bryan: Welcome back to the top 10 Sparty. I know, I know, you’re angry at me. I turned my back on you when the stakes got high. But try to remember the good times. Like when I predicted you to give Wisconsin its only loss in the pre-season. Or when I rode you against Michigan when most said you were a fraud. Or when I defended you all off-season when everyone said you were exposed in the Capital One Bowl and last year was a fluke. Great, great win on Saturday night. Following behind 14-0 to a Badgers team who can just control the way the game is played and erasing said deficit speaks volumes to your resiliency. The ending to the game was just terrible defense all around but luckily they got the call right. Now Sparty can pretty much give themselves one foot into the Big Ten championship game with a win at Nebraska this weekend.
Trending: Don’t blow it vs. Nebraska.
K.M: *Hides head in shame from predicing them to get blown out*
Trending: They will wallop Nebraska, who I think is terrible. I’ll give them their due next week, I’m not ready to eat the necessary crow right now.
10. Arkansas Razorbacks (K.M: 9th, Bryan: 11th)- 12 points
K.M: Arkansas is SO damn lucky that teams above them lost. That was a pathetic performance against an Ole Miss team that seems to think they are in the Suck for Luck tank contest. SOMEONE TELL HOUSTON NUTT THERE IS NO HIGH SCHOOL DRAFT. Pathetic is really the only word for it. Vandy and South Carolina might give you a bit of a scare, but they also might allow you redemption. Those games will be crucial for the Hogs to overcoming the shame of not devouring Ole Miss like so much bacon. Which I guess would be kinda cannibalistic. And cannibalistic actions kinda fit the rep Bobby Petrino has, so in a way, it would also be apropos.
Trending: Room to climb, no question.
Bryan: Can’t do that against Ole Miss and not expect to be dealt with harshly. If I had told you that Oklahoma and Wisconsin would lose this weekend, you would have felt good about your chances to jump up a bit. Instead you allow Stanford and Michigan State to pass you, I can’t drop Wisconsin past you, and you actually lose ground from last week. Vanderbilt, Tennessee, South Carolina and Mississippi St. before the big one with LSU. You tell me which game you shouldn’t win? Yea, I don’t see it either. Just do what you should do and I’ll redeem my faith in you. Lose and you risk the chance of getting thrown out all together.
Trending: Either up or out. I have no more patience.
11. Wisconsin Badgers (Bryan: 8th, K.M: 14th)- 10 points
Bryan: What the hell happened? Understandable loss which is why I’m not punishing you too severely but a 14-0 lead evaporated? Just can’t happen when you consider yourself a national title threat. That blocked punt TD before the half ended was an absolute back-breaker. Just can’t give a team that kind of momentum going into locker room after they already have so much of it. Plain and simple, Badgers are out of NCG race. I can’t fathom any scenario where this team could play itself back into it. Now they just have to regroup and look to win the Leaders division so they can get back to the Rose Bowl. Tough consolation prize, but it will have to do at this point.
Trending: Around 7-10. Won’t go much higher if they win. Won’t go much lower unless they lose. Kinda like Boise, just not a ton I can get behind now. This was your toughest game on schedule and you dropped it. Just not a great resume’ no matter how good you can be on the eye test.
K.M: Bucky, go to hell. You flew too close to the sun, your wings melted, you gave up a 14 point lead, you found a new set of wings, flew way up to the stars to tie the game, then at the end of the game you forgot to flap your wings and it all came crashing down. That is an epic analogy. Full of hack phrases and adding nothing to the reader’s experience. WATCH OUT BILL PLATCHKE, I HAVE FIGURED OUT YOUR SECRETS. The clock management by Wisconsin at the end of the game was just asinine. Anyone who has played video games would have known that Wisconsin was more likely to lose then win at 3rd and 8 on the MSU 40 or 45 or whatever with 30 seconds to go. MSU is scared to call time out in case they miss, but Wisconsin should have been scared to call a time out in case MSU got the first down and had 2 left. Sometimes in game theory, both players should defer action. Wisconsin did it to themselves. And here they lie.
Trending: I’ll get over this loss and move them up soon.
12. Texas A&M Aggies (K.M: 12th, Bryan: 13th)- 7 points
K.M: Should have done better, Aggies. But I’m bias for you, so I’ll give you 12. PLAY BETTER, ***HOLES.
Trending: I’ll rank them as long as I can.
Bryan: WTF was that? Way too close for a game against Iowa St. You’re simply fortunate there just isn’t enough teams I like or else you would have dropped for that. You see these scrubs right below you in this poll who I will never rank? They wouldn’t have struggled that much with Iowa St. Get your act together. You have a potential BCS at-large type game in two weeks in Norman.
Trending: Down. This team is going to screw up. I feel it coming. Go to hell Aggies.
13. Houston Cougars (Bryan: N/R, K.M: 11th)- 5 points
K.M: I <3 HOUSTON.
Trending: I’ll give Houston a promise ring soon in all likelihood.
T-14. Virginia Tech Hokies (K.M: 13th, Bryan: 15th)- 4 points
K.M: Oklahoma is so pathetic. How do you lose to Texas Tech in this post-Pirate era? Sure, they do a lot of the same stuff, but they don’t have the luster they once did. Big Game Bob is a complete myth. We’ve figured out Mike Stoops is clown shoes. Why is Bob not as obvious. Does anyone really think one is way more talented then the other? I guess Bob went to elite charter schools and Mike was riding the short bus to Safety Scissor Middle School as a child? Maybe Mike ate Bob’s rations of paint chips as a child? Seriously, Bob Stoops can go to hell. Also, I got nothing nice to say about VT.
Trending: I hope out. I hate them.
Bryan: Hey I got to come up with 15 teams. You think I like this team? Their best win is Wake Forest. But I’m stuck. You tell me who should be ranked? Not as if I like Nebraska, Michigan, Houston, etc anymore. I’m merely trying to fill out a 15-team poll at this point.
Trending: Irrelevant. Wait what? This team may be out next week. It may be top 10. Hell if I know. Anything after the top 10 is garbage. Even some of these top 10 teams aren’t as legit as one would think. I hate ranking teams after the top 8.
T-14. Oklahoma Sooners (Bryan: 12th, K.M: N/R)- 4 points
Bryan: Well, it’s why I didn’t feel picking you to win the title would be a wise choice. Going through all your games, I didn’t see a game you should lose. I know the talent there, but you just do this too often. Lose a game you probably shouldn’t or lose a big game. Well, here you sit, still chances to get back up the rankings with Bedlam and the Aggies. Hell, Kansas St. this weekend on the road will be a chance. Still, just typical Chokelahoma. We thank you in Clemson.
Trending: Up. They’ll do what they always do and win games now that there’s no NCG chances and say “Well, if only…”
Others Receiving Votes:
South Carolina Gamecocks (Bryan: 14th, K.M: N/R)- 2 points
Bryan: Bye week. Thought you might drop out but again, just not enough teams I can get behind.
Trending: Out in 2 weeks when Arkansas beats you handedly.
Michigan Wolverines (K.M: 15th, Bryan: N/R)- 1 point
K.M: I guess if MSU can beat Wisconsin, the Wolverines loss isn’t so bad.
Trending: Hell if I know.