Coaches Poll: Who Is Actually Voting?
The first Coaches Poll has already come out, marking an end to the dead days of summer and the impending start of another beautiful autumn.
This first Coaches Poll can be analyzed backwards and forwards as to whether a certain team deserved to be in a specific spot or not, and there are a number of teams that have a legitimate claim to No. 1.
But as opposed to the final poll of the season, few give this first poll very close scrutiny.
Many writers far better than me, both on this site and on other sites, have written about this first poll. As it is the first poll there is relatively little heated debate and trash talking. Fans want to wait till the season begins.
However, a few writers have noticed, as have I, that there is one major thing missing from this first Coaches Poll.
As a University of Georgia grad I loathe the Visor with all my being, but his habits and comments are always there to give me a chuckle. Free Shoes University will always live in my mind as one of the funniest coach comments of my life.
But Spurrier is notably absent from the first Coaches Poll.
You may be asking what exactly I mean.
Spurrier has made it known that he will always vote Duke No. 25 on his ballot—until they lose their first game—as a sign of respect and honor for the Blue Devils giving him his first shot as a head coach.
But there it is, the first Coaches Poll has come out and Spurrier and the Blue Devils are notably missing. This begs the question, what happened?
There are only two possible reasons that Spurrier did not vote Duke as No. 25 on his ballot.
1) He has some sort of personal vendetta against David Cutcliffe that we do not know about; or
2) He did not fill out his ballot, but someone else did.
Of the two possibilities, it is much more likely that the second is actually the true. And that, in my mind, is a problem that we have seen year in and year out in College Football with the Coaches Poll.
It's possible that the coaches aren't actually the ones filling out their ballots, and this may be a blatant instance of that.
Where is the honor? Where is the pride? Where is the sense of responsibility?
As a coach this, in a way, tells your players it is okay to have someone else do the work you were entrusted with. That, in my mind, is wrong.
Coaches are given the honor of voting in a poll of their peers to determine who gets to play in bowl games at the end of the season.
Now, you may be saying to yourself: Well, this is just the opening poll and that doesn't mean anything towards the end of the season.
That may or may not be true, but if a coach cannot take the time to fill out a ballot before the season begins, how can we expect him to fill out the ballot at the end of the season, when there are a lot more duties to take part in?
Maybe it is nitpicking, but when coaches do not fill out their own ballots it takes away from the integrity of the poll and, in turn, from the integrity of the BCS.
So, to Coach Spurrier and any other coaches who do not seem to be filling out their own ballots, take a second to realize what your failure means to the game, the teams, and most importantly, your players.
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