By: David Lamm
I’ve often complained about the preseason college football polls. Ranking teams before they play a game often puts under-the-radar teams at a major disadvantage.
It’s a long climb for teams ranked low or unranked at all in the preseason polls. On the other hand, a high preseason ranking often allows a team to stay in the playoff hunt with an early loss.
This year, however, my concern is for naught. It seems the lack of parity in college football is more real than ever.
The top 10 in the preseason has been shuffled a little, but basically the same players are still there as we near the first official poll, the one that will determine those four playoff teams.
There’s always been, it seems, two or three teams that dominate in each cycle, but now there are six or seven to choose from. The regular season is little more than warm-ups for these powerhouses.
You know their names. College football should be concerned about that.
This rant isn’t just about the possibility of another Clemson-Alabama showdown. It’s about the same cast of characters nibbling at their heels, Ohio State, Georgia and Oklahoma. This year LSU has entered the fight, and maybe the Gators. Saturday’s game in Baton Rouge between the Tigers and the Gators will likely eliminate one of them. LSU is an early 14-point favorite.
Wouldn’t it be great for college football if Penn State or Wisconsin or Oregon could get in the mix? They’re all big-time established programs, but I’ll take anything to stir up the top 5’s dominance.
Maybe the early odds tell us all we need to know about the lack of parity.
Georgia’s favored by 24 against South Carolina. Clemson’s a 27-point vs. FSU. Alabama favored by 17 at Texas A&M.