An UnAssociated College Football Poll: Week One

Michael CollinsAnalyst ISeptember 4, 2008

Here is the first of my UnAssociated Polls, which will emphasize not only how teams did, but also who they played.

For the first week of college football, standings are separated into whether you played a BCS team, a non-BCS I-A team, or a I-AA team.  Respective points will be awarded for each category.

As the season progresses, BCS teams who have marshmallow non-conference schedules will begin to accumulate points with conference wins (attention Red Raider and Badger fans).  Teams that start with a BCS opponent and then two I-AA opponents will slip.  Non-BCS teams will be up to my personal judgments.

By the end of the year, the poll will consist of those teams who have won over a stronger schedule.  This poll is totally unrelated to any popularity or regional bias poll. 


Played BCS team (1.0 pt for win)

1. USC (at Virginia—52-7)

The most impressive performance of the first week.  USC outgained Va 558 to 187 yards.  Sanchez was 26-35 for 338 yds.  Trojans rushed 41 times for 218 yards.  Possibly the top defense in the nation.  Time of possession 36:31 to 23:29.

Next week: Off


2. Alabama (vs. Clemson in Alabama—34-10)

Totally dominating defense.  The Tide held Davis/Spiller to 29 yards.  John Parker Wilson was 22-30 for 180 yds.  Third down conversions 11-17.  Alabama rushed 50 times for 239. 

Next: Tulane


3. Missouri (vs. Illinois in St. Louis—52-42)

Missouri needs to find a defense.  Daniel was 26-45 for 323 yards, but Juice Williams was 26-42 for 451 yards.  Jeremy Maclin had a 99-yard kickoff return and a punt return of 45 yards. 

Next: S.E. Missouri St. (currently 123rd in Dunkel I-AA ranking)


4. ECU (vs. Va Tech—27-22)

Special teams blocked punt for winning TD.  Pinckney 19-23 for 211 yards, TOP Va Tech 33:08 to 26:52 for ECU.  ECU gave up nine points to Va Tech’s special teams.  

Next: West Virginia (make a name for yourself, Pirates) 


5. Utah (at Michigan—25-23)

Rich Rod: “They deserved to win.”  Mich. held Utah to 36 yards on 43 rushes.  However, Utah held Mich. to 36 yards on 25 rushes.  TOP 35:30 to 24.30 Utah. 

Next: UNLV


6. UCLA (vs. Tenn—27-24)

A second half comeback on passing of JC transfer Kevin Craft.  Norm Chow settled Craft down at halftime after Craft threw three interceptions in the first half.  UCLA rushing had 31 attempts for 29 yds.  A one-dimensional offense for Chow so far. 

Next: Off


7. Stanford (vs. Ore. St.—36-28)

Stanford was outgained and outpassed by Oregon St, but Toby Gerhart’s 147 yards running and Oregon St. mistakes gave the Cardinal the lead.  They held on. 

Next: Arizona State


8. Cal (vs. Mich. St.—38-31)

Kevin Riley led the Golden Bears to the lead with 202 yards and two second half TDs.  Nate Longshore nearly let the Spartans back in it.  Bears had two 100-yard rushers, Shane Vereen and Jahvid Best.  

Next: Washington St.


9. Okla. St. (at WSU—39-13)

Two no-huddle spread offenses squared off.  Okla. St. goes out to 15-0 lead and is able to stop WSU's run.  WSU gained 51 yards in first 28 plays. 

Next: Houston 


10. Oregon (vs. Wash—44-10)

Ducks lost another QB.  Jake Locker seems like only Wash. offense.  Oregon 72 plays for 496 yards, Wash. 78 plays for 242 yards  Oregon rushing—Jeremiah Johnson, 124 yards on 15 carries.

Next: Utah State


11. South Carolina (vs. North Carolina St.—34-0)

The perfect opening for S. Carolina, who had lost five in a row.  Tommy Beecher was pulled after throwing four INTs, and SC was ahead 13-0 in the fourth quarter.  Chris Smelley almost got the same number of passing yards in one quarter with two passing TDs.  SC Defense held NC State to 138 total yards.

Next: Vanderbilt


12. Wake Forest (at Baylor—41-13)

Skinner had 72 percent completion, TOP 34:16-25:44.  But it was Baylor, for goodness sake.

Next: Mississippi

13. Kentucky (at Louisville—27-2)

New coach Rich Brooks knows he has to build an offense.  But defense wins football games, and he has a good one.

Next: Norfolk State (currently ranked 73rd in Dunkel I-AA ranking)



Played non-BCS I-A team (0.5 pts for win)

14. Florida (vs. Hawaii—56-10)

Score was after 0-0 first quarter, but Fla scores next 56 pts, offense, defense and special teams scores, Tebow 9-14.

Next: Miami (FL)


15. Texas (vs. Fla Atl—52-10)

McCoy completed first 13 passes, 28-35 overall, 81 plays for 503 yds, TOP 35:14-24:46. 

Next: UTEP


16.  Auburn (vs. La-Monroe—34-0)

In Auburn, Tony Franklin’s new spread offense had to rely on running.  Franklin: “We stunk.”   Tuberville: “We have some growing up to do.”

Next: Southern Mississippi


17. Wisconsin (vs. Akron—38-17)

P.J. Hill all the way, 210 yards of Wisc 404 rush yards, 479 total yards.  Opponents will need to stop Wisconsin running.  Anything new?  Akron was 4-8 last year.

Next: (We Are) Marshall


18. Kansas (vs. Fla Int’l—40-10)

A record crowd.  Fla Int’l was ranked 116th, 1-11 last year.  Kansas launches offensive juggernaut and should continue against...

Next: Louisiana Tech (ranked 111th last year)

(After Week 1 for Divison I teams only:

BCS 13, non-BCS 5)


Played I-AA team (No points, except for style)

19. Ohio State (vs. Youngstown St.—43-0)

Chris “Beanie” Wells down in third qtr after 111 yards—for anyone in the world who has not yet heard.  Buckeye OL looks dominant—even their substitutes.  

Next: Ohio (Now that's scheduling!)


20. Oklahoma (vs. Chattanooga—57-2)

Score was 50-0 after the first half.  Chattanooga ended up with 36 Total yards, three completed passes, and one first down.   The Mocs were 2-9 last year, ranked 159th by Sagarin. 

Next: Cincinnati (We’ll see how good Oklahoma is.)


21. LSU (vs. App. St.—41-13)

With two inexperienced QBs, LSU ran the ball on 40 of 64 plays for 266 yards.  Against SEC opponents, think that will work? 

Next: Troy (postponed due to Gustav), Week 3 - North Texas


22. Georgia (vs. Ga Southern—45-21)

Ga scored first 38 pts, Stafford with career-high 275 yds, Knowshon Moreno scored three TDs, Caleb King (Fr) top rusher 95 yds, A.J. Green for 40 yds on two catches—only their fifth highest receiver in yards.

Next: Central Michigan (Is Georgia a Big Ten team?)


23. West Virginia (vs. Villanova—48-21)

Pat White scored quickly and often with five touchdown passes.  The Wildcats tried ball control.  ‘Nova had 28 first downs to WVa’s 21, ‘Nova 89 plays for 399yds, WVa 56 for 354 yds.

Next: East Carolina


24. Texas Tech (vs. E. Washington—49-24)

Harrell for 536 yds, 43-58.  He had to make up for a record 18 penalties for 169 yards.  Eastern Washington ranked 110th last year. 

Next: Nevada (ranked 102nd last year)


25. Arizona State (vs. N. Arizona—30-13)

At Tempe, Carpenter 22-28 for 388 yds against the Lumberjacks, ranked 158th last year.  Only Pac-8 teams that did not play BCS opponents were from Arizona.  My bad, Pac-10. 

Next: Stanford

(After Week 1, 

BCS teams 18, Division I-AA - 0

All Division I-A - 29, Division I-AA - 1)


Conference totals

Pac-10: 5

SEC: 3.5

Big 12: 3

Conf USA: 1

Mtn West: 1

ACC: 1

Big 10: .5

Big East: 0

Clearly, after the first week of football play, the Pac-10 has taken on and won most frequently over strong BCS opponents.  We'll see if their commitment to strength of schedule will dominate over other conferences. 

In the end, no excuses and no whining will be tolerated.  Tell your team to "Just win, baby." 

(Rankings from last year by Jeff Sagarin.) 


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