Monday, September 26, 2011

A look inside the AP Poll: Week 5

There seemed to be some confusion among MSU fans when the polls came out. How could the Spartans fall, or at least not rise, in the polls?

In the coaches poll, the Spartans fell from No. 23 to No. 25. In the Associated Press poll, they remained as the first team outside the rankings. The only change in the top 25 was that Arizona State moved in, and USC moved out, as the Sun Devils defeated the Trojans.

But taking a look at the ballots, there were some voters who didn't seem to think much of MSU's 45-7 win over Central Michigan.

There were five voters who had MSU ranked last week and unranked this week.

The biggest drop was from John Hunt of The Oregonian. Hunt had the Spartans at No. 20 last week. The teams that Hunt moved into the rankings ahead of MSU were: Georgia Tech, Illinois (after their three-point win against Western Michigan), Arizona State and Houston.

The remaining voters who moved MSU out of the rankings had the Spartans at No. 24 or No. 25, so there wasn't much of a fall.

MSU highest ranking is No. 17 from Ira Schoffel of The Tallahassee Democrat. Schoffel moved the Spartans up two spots from last week. He also has seven (!) rankings that are considered extreme (including MSU) and one that is near extreme.

As for local voters, Jeremy Sampson of WLIX-TV dropped the Spartans down one spot to No. 24, which John Niyo of The Detroit News still has them unranked.

Now obviously the polls don't mean a whole lot right now. With MSU's upcoming schedule, a lot will change. A win over Ohio State likely would put them into the top 25. But the next five weeks could see MSU shoot up, plummet out or stay around where they are now.

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