Where did the 59 voting coaches place UCLA?

The Bruins (17th in AP) finished No. 19 in the final USA Today Coaches’ Poll, which USA Today also broke down ballot by ballot in a fascinating interactive graphic. Definitely check it out in its entirety, but here are some of the highlights:

— UCLA’s highest vote was No. 13, which came from Middle Tennessee’s Rick Stockstill. San Jose State coach Mike MacIntyre had the Bruins lowest at No. 25, behind his own Spartans, Fresno State, Kent State and Tulsa.

— Five coaches had UCLA at No. 23, including Baylor’s Art Briles and fired Cal coach Jeff Tedford. Tedford probably didn’t think as much of the Bruins given what he saw in Berkeley, but Mike Riley beat UCLA too and had them at No. 17.

— Seven coaches had UCLA at No. 15, including David Bailiff (Rice), Bo Pelini (Nebraska) and Mike Leach (WSU). Wins over all three probably helped make an impression.

— Standard deviation tends to increase going down the poll, which is expected since distinguishing three- and four-loss teams from each other is more difficult. One exception is No. 8 Stanford, which is as as high as fourth (Todd Graham, ASU) and as low as twelfth. Georgia and Kansas State sparked disagreement as well.

— Other unsurprising regional biases include three southern coaches leaving Notre Dame out of the top spot. Vanderbilt’s James Franklin had three teams ahead of the undefeated Irish: Alabama, Florida and Georgia.

On the other side of that coin, Mike Riley and Fresno State’s Tim DeRuyter both had the Crimson Tide third behind Oregon.

The take-home lesson is probably that coaches should not be involved something that actually affects how the postseason is set up. Hard to blame them for helping themselves if the system allows it.

Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page
  • The Big Woof!

    The “Coaches poll” has been a meaningless farce for many years. Perceptive people pay it no attention. Time for it to be eliminated totally.

    • I agree. Football’s a sport, not a popularity contest.

      An actual playoff would be ideal; qualify by winning your conference (however your conference decides that), and the major bowls can host the various games.

      As it is, determining college football’s “champion” is little more than Dancing with the Stars on grass.

  • Very interesting. Would have liked to have seen where Lane Kiffin had us.

    • Reformed Droog

      I wouldn’t ask him – he’s not one to tell the truth on these sort of things…

      • The Big Woof!

        Good to have you back, Droog.

        • Reformed Droog

          Yeah, I swing through less often these days. Need more content…

  • UCLA Owns the Rose Bowl

    That was a very interesting piece. Out of the box. Thanks, Jack.

  • Hardtail Bruin

    All you need to know: Vanderbilt’s coach (James Franklin) voted his team #16 in the nation – and that’s not even the most offensive thing about his ballot. This is really stupid. Seriously, if you get a chance, highlight his column and take a look at his ballot. Wow.

  • Hardtail Bruin

    Oh yeah, Mike Mike Macintyre of San Jose St. has a beaut of a ballot as well. He has us #25 just behind Fresno State and Kent State. In the meantime, Nebraska, who we beat and got just crushed by Wisconsin on Saturday drops a couple of spots to #17. What???