Saturday, October 26, 2013

Alabama vs. Florida State: A College Football Match-up of Undefeated Teams

Alabama.  Alabama.  Alabama.  Alabama.  Alabama.  Alabama.

This is a list of the top college football teams in the country in each of the six polls on  You'll notice each of them is exactly the same.  

Each of them is also bogus.

The Crimson Tide is number one despite the fact that they have the third-easiest schedule (calculated with team's records through week 8 of the college football season) among the eight current undefeated squads in the automatic qualifying conferences.   This statistic, among others, means the Tide should yield the number one spot in the rankings to Florida State.

The Seminoles currently top the aforementioned cohort of undefeated teams in opponent win percentage at .675.   And the boys from Tallahassee are still the best in opponent win percentage even if you remove all Football Championship Subdivision teams from the total of the won-lost records of the undefeated teams' opponents.  

The 'Noles have also played the most difficult schedule of top 25 teams to date (.786 win percentage) and have played them exceedingly well.  Their total point differential against teams ranked in the top 25 is a blistering +100 following their defeats of Maryland (final score: 63-0) and Clemson (final score: 51-14).  The Clemson Tigers, mind you, were ranked third in the AP Top 25 when they faced the Seminoles.

To top it all off, Florida State is the perhaps most well-rounded of the eight remaining undefeated teams, ranking third in the nation in both points scored and allowed per game.  Alabama, for all its defensive prowess (best scoring defense in the country with just 9.7 points allowed per game), has scored 40.7 ppg this season.  While that's nothing to sneeze at, it puts them far below Florida State's average, and last among all the automatic qualifying conference undefeateds.

To their credit, Alabama has not played any FCS teams in 2013, but victories over the likes of Georgia State (currently 0-7 as a member of the Sun Belt Conference), Kentucky (1-6), and Colorado State (3-4, but in the Mountain West) sort of means that their cupcakes are cream-filled as opposed to merely topped with icing and sprinkles.

So with all the accolades that Florida State has built up so far this season, it seems only fit to put them at the top of the polls, as opposed to their SEC counterparts.