Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I can't believe I wasted $7.00 on this garbage

I recently purchased the 2008 Athlon Sports Southeastern Preview in eager anticipation of the upcoming football season (only 72 days remain before August 30). While I found Athlon's All-American selections to be sensible and the team-by-team breakdowns in the conference overview to be logical and informative, the method Athlon used to rank all 119 teams is deplorable. Athlon surveyed each team's schedule and then recorded not only the numbers of wins and losses but also the number of swing games a team might have. So, Florida is ranked No. 1 by virtue of a 9-0-3 record. Oregon State, on the other hand, is ranked 61 with a hypothetical 0-9-3 record. The problem to this ranking system is obvious: ties do not exist in college football. Being an intensely interested college football fan, I would like to know a little more about my team's chances for the upcoming season than that the team for which I am rooting may lose to three teams with which it always struggles. Here is the Athlon Top 10:
1: Florida (9-0-3)
2:Ohio State (9-0-3)
3:Oklahoma (11-0-1)
4:USC (9-0-3)
5:Georgia (7-0-5)
6:Missouri (9-0-3)
7:West Virginia (10-0-2)
8:Auburn (9-0-3)
9:LSU (9-0-3)
10:Clemson (10--0-2)
11:Texas (7-0-5)
12:Wisconsin (9-0-3)
13:Kansas (7-1-4)
14:BYU (10-0-2)
15:Arizona State (8-0-4)
16:Illinois (7-0-5)
17:Tennessee (8-1-3)
18:Texas Tech (9-1-2)
19:Oregon (10-0-2)
20: South Florida (9-1-2)

After viewing these rankings, it's obvious that Athlon's predictions are flawed in that, according to the system's logic, Oklahoma should be ranked in the one spot coming into the season and Auburn should be ranked ahead of Georgia. Illinois and Georgia should be ranked alongside one another, but no, in ultimately deciding the rankings, it seems that Athlon basically mirrored the actions of the other major publications and just switched the order of the top teams a bit. While Athlon's efforts at attaining individuality in ranking teams should be lauded, the overall result is flawed in print .

No comments: