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Who Needs A Blog Poll 2020: Week 14 exposes more pretenders

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Told ya’ Coastal was good.

NCAA Football: Coastal Carolina at Kansas Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Remember waaaaay back in Week 2 and 3 when I told you that Coastal Carolina was good? Do you trust me yet? This is a damned good team, one that plays better with three-stars across the board than their blue-chip laden brethren in Columbia. The SEC East dodged a bullet when South Carolina hired OU Tight End Coach Shane Beamer tonight rather than Chadwell. Tonight, the Chanticleers absolutely clamped down on No. 7 BYU at home, holding them to 31 points below their season output, ending the Heisman prospects of Zach Wilson, and more crucially ending BYU as a competitor for that 4th playoff spot.

In a weird year, one where fully half of the teams above them may be eliminated over the next two weeks, why not consider a Cincinnati or Coastal? The CFP Committee, staffed as it is with Power 5 apparatchiks, will never let that happen, of course — they consistently show antipathy to the Group of 5. But given how flaky and inconsistent a lot of major division teams have been, and how good the Top of the Sun Belt and AAC have been in 2020, can we really say that the PAC 12 or Big 10 are in a better shape or stake a better claim? Or that a two-loss Big 12 winner is better than a quality Sun Belt team. I can’t, and neither can you. We’ve settled this on the field in Week One: Sun Belt 3 — Big 12 0.

As the kids say, ball don’t lie.

2020 Blog Poll: Week 14

RANKING TEAM LAST WEEK
RANKING TEAM LAST WEEK
1 Alabama 1
2 Notre Dame 2
3 Texas A&M 3
4 Ohio State 5
5 Clemson 4
6 Cincinnati 6
7 Coastal Carolina 10
8 Florida 8
9 Oklahoma 10
10 Miami 11
11 Iowa State 13
12 Indiana 14
13 ULL 16
14 Tulsa 16
15 San Jose State 18
16 BYU 7
17 Northwestern 17
18 Colorado --
19 Buffalo 20
20 Liberty 22
21 Georgia --
22 Iowa 21
23 Nevada --
24 Texas --
25 Marshall 12
OUTTA' HERE App. State, WMU, Ok. State
CONSIDERED Absolutely no one else. Yuck.

Couple of Quick Notes:

  • Wanna know who’s playing the best football in the PAC 12? Colorado. Go peep their schedule too — they’ve already done more than USC has. The Buffs get the nod instead of the perennially underachieving Trojans. Karl Dorrell (!!!) is already your P12 COTY, and it’s not close (though, Chip Kelly seems to finally be fielding a competitive team again after the disastrous roster mess he inherited.)
  • tOSU and Clemson swap places. Clemson again looked ragged for a half against a bad team. While Ohio State, also on the road against a bad team, was down 26 players, including 5 starters and 2 key backups. They both won big, but given who Va. Tech has beaten vs. who Michigan State has beaten, you give the nod to Sparty as the better win.
  • Last week we had Coastal at No. 10. They move to No. 7 this week, ahead of Florida. Why? Because they don’t dick around with bad teams, they don’t give squads hope, they can throw the ball and run it, they force turnovers, and they are just solid in every phase of the game. Would they beat Gata? Likely not, if talent is the barometer. But they are a more complete team and a better coached one. They’ve earned this spot.
  • Bet Iowa State, Miami and Oklahoma wish they could replay their first month, eh? The three of them combined for 5 early losses, and I can pretty confidently say that 4 of them aren’t repeated if this game is played in December. And, hey, who knows what a Miami-Clemson rematch would look like?
  • There are quite a few very good midmajor teams in the middle and bottom of the rankings, and all are led by uber-stout defenses: San Jose State, Nevada, Tulsa, ULL, Buffalo — take a bow.
  • BYU is still a good team. They’re going to wreck some disinterested 6-2 Big Ten team in the Who Cares Dot Com Bowl (come on down, Iowa!)
  • The only team that is beating Alabama this year is Alabama. We’re all still scarred from 2018, I know. We need to see a national title with this kind of football before we believe it can win. Because of that, we all have a nagging doubt about the ‘Bama D — the lingering fear that the Tide’s defense can dig itself into a hole that makes the prospect of an L not so remote versus an elite offense. That said, only Clemson and Notre Dame have done a better job of halftime defensive adjustments. Florida will be a very good test: in gameplanning, in keeping up with a similarly elite offense, and in making defensive adjustments.