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Blog Poll v.1.1

The addition of The Daily Gopher means the subtraction of two Gopher blogs, which of course nets out to -1 Gopher blog in the blogsphere. This is pretty meaningless except for the fact that the University of Minnesota loses 1 vote in the prestigious Blog Poll.

For those of you who may be unaware the Blog Poll is a labor of love by Brian at MGO. Specifically it is a top 25 college football poll done by approximately 80+ college football blogs. Every week Brian compiles the information and releases the official Blog Poll (not yet a factor in the BCS formula).

The Daily Gopher is going to participate in the 2008 Blog Poll and is ready to release it's early top 25. In a preseason poll I am going to base my ranking on returning starters, returning a quality QB and a little bit of predicted finish. Once the season kicks in strength of schedule and actual results will trump how I think they'll play out. I'm not going into a ton of detail because more than anything I'll just make it up as I go.

Below is my initial ballot. My official final ballot isn't due until Monday so please take a look. Then PLEASE give me your well thought out arguments as to how I was able to actually put together the perfect top 25 OR why I'm a complete idiot and I should just hold off posting anything until basketball season.

First Draft of Top 25

Rank Team Delta
1 Georgia 25
2 Ohio State 24
3 Florida 23
4 Oklahoma 22
5 Southern Cal 21
6 Clemson 20
7 Texas Tech 19
8 Missouri 18
9 LSU 17
10 Auburn 16
11 Texas 15
12 Wisconsin 14
13 West Virginia 13
14 Wake Forest 12
15 Arizona State 11
16 South Florida 10
17 Oregon 9
18 Tennessee 8
19 Penn State 7
20 Kansas 6
21 Florida State 5
22 Alabama 4
23 California 3
24 Virginia Tech 2
25 Pittsburgh 1

Some Clarifying Thoughts

I could buy an argument for any of my top 5 or 6 teams as #1. This season feels deeper than the last couple, but of course it will all thin out after a couple weeks.

1. Georgia - Solid all over the field, and should be primed to make a serious run at BCS title game with a goose egg in the loss column. I thought about going with something different but my head wouldn't let me.

2. Ohio State - Last year's BCS title game was last year. This team was very good then, they bring back 18 starters and have star power all over the field. The Big Ten as a whole is very weak but don't sleep on the Buckeye's this year.

3. Florida - Tebow and Harvin are incredibly dangerous on offense. I know there are questions on defense but the return 8 starters from a year ago anchored by LB-Brandon Spikes. Thought long and hard about them as #1 but they play @ UGA so I'm giving the nod to the Bulldogs.

4. Oklahoma - Very solid on the OL combined with one of the best RBs in the Big 12 and you have a dangerous team. 4th overall might disappoint Sooner fans, but I think they'll win Big 12 South. Also has Tex, Kan, TT at home while avoiding Missouri. If I'm projecting based on schedule it would be hard to not put them in top 2.

5. USC - Returning a ton on defense which could be historically good and on offense they have some great weapons. USC vs Ohio State should be a blast to watch in week 3.

I'm down on Illinois. I've never been impressed with Juice and I think their offense will struggle without Mendenhall. The Illini will lose big @ Missouri, @ Penn St, @ Wisconsin and home to Ohio State.

I'm high on Florida State and Clemson. The ACC is probably worse than the Big 10 but I like the talent at these respective schools.

Well, with a little research and my own high-brow college football intellect, that is draft number one. Please engage in the conversation and show me the error of my ways.