Baltimore Sports Report Ballot – Week 7
|2||Alabama Crimson Tide||—|
|5||Oklahoma St. Cowboys||1|
|6||Boise St. Broncos||-1|
|13||Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets||—|
|14||West Virginia Mountaineers||4|
|15||Arizona St. Sun Devils||5|
|16||Kansas St. Wildcats||7|
|17||South Carolina Gamecocks||-1|
|18||Virginia Tech Hokies||1|
|19||Illinois Fighting Illini||2|
|23||Texas A&M Aggies||1|
|25||Michigan St. Spartans||—|
|Dropouts: Florida Gators, Florida St. Seminoles|
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No Florida schools in AP top 25
For the first time since Dec. 6, 1982, there are no Florida schools ranked in the AP top 25. The 472 straight appearances by Sunshine State universities was snapped this week after all of the so-called big three (Florida Gators, Florida State Seminoles and Miami Hurricanes) weren’t able to break the top 25. Florida State and Florida appeared in the poll last week, but after the Gators were waxed by LSU and the Seminoles were upset by Wake Forest, both were ousted from the rankings. Miami and first-year head coach Al Golden have been struggling all season and are currently 2-3, including a 38-35 loss at Virginia Tech this past Saturday. It was only the second time since Oct. 14, 1978 that Florida, Florida State and Miami lost on the same day.
Miami was expected to struggle a bit this season, especially after a handful of players were suspended after violating NCAA rules. Florida began the season playing very well and beating up on inferior opponents, but it has been all downhill from there. After losing their starting quarterback, John Brantley, two weeks ago, they have lost two straight to Alabama and LSU and have been outscored 79-21 in those contests. They are extremely talented, but it’s going to take a few years to become contenders again. Now on to the Seminoles, who have to be the most overrated team in college football. They began the season ranked No. 6, but are currently on a three-game losing streak and now find themselves 2-3 overall and 0-2 in the ACC. They are 115th in the nation in rushing and their defense has given up 93 points in their last three contests. Maybe next year, Jimbo.
Michigan continues strong start
Even though Michigan head coach Brady Hoke wasn’t the first choice to replace Rich Rodriguez this past offseason, it is looking more and more like he was the perfect choice. Hoke has his Wolverines playing excellent football right now, including a defense that is only allowing 10.2 points per game, which is second in the nation. The new-look defense has a lot to do with Hoke bringing in former Ravens defensive coordinator, Greg Mattison, to occupy the same position. On the other side of the ball, quarterback Denard Robinson leads the seventh-ranked rushing attack (272.6 yards per game) with 603 yards on the ground to go with 793 through the air. In addition, Robinson has accounted for 14 touchdowns this season.
The Wolverines face a tough test this Saturday, however, on the road against a solid Michigan State squad. The Spartans will almost certainly give the Wolverines all they can handle, especially since they are coming off a bye week. Michigan State cruised to a 34-17 victory last season in Ann Arbor on their way to an 11-2 record. Michigan looks to have the edge this season, though, especially considering how well their defense has been playing. We know that Robinson and the offense will be able to put up some points, but if their defense continues to be solid, they’ll be 7-0 heading into the tough part of their schedule.
Submitted by Steve Giles