By Hugh Falk, Pollspeak.com
BCS perfection lasted all of one week. Last week, I pointed out that we had a consensus No. 1 (Texas) and No. 2 (Alabama) for the first time in BCS history. It was close this week, but the Billingsley Report ended that consensus by voting Penn State No. 2 over Alabama. Before Tide fans get angry, I suggest they take another Billingsley's advice. Barbara Billingsley, who played "Jive Lady" in the movie Airplane, said it best: "Jus' hang loose, blood" and "Cut me some slack, Jack!"
Instead of getting upset, ponder this week's BCS question: Have the computer rankings been watered down too much in the BCS formula? Currently, the two human polls account for two-thirds of the formula while the six computer polls account for one-third. Additionally, the formula discards the highest and lowest computer ranking for each team. South Florida provides a dramatic example this week. USF ranks 23rd in both human polls, but didn't get a single point from a computer (the school's not ranked in the top 25). Yet USF still ranks 23rd in the BCS. That doesn't sound right, does it? The formula received some tweaks a few years ago to give the human element more weight, but now it might have too much weight. There are of course some examples to the contrary, but 15 of the 25 ranked teams have a BCS ranking that's basically the same as their human poll ranking.
• If you want to know who's on the "BCS bubble," check out the BCS Guru. There, you can see which teams rank 26th and lower (unofficially) in the BCS Standings.
• Looking at the bottom of the AP Poll, Craig James was the only voter who ranked Notre Dame (No. 24) above North Carolina (unranked). In fact, he was one of only six voters to rank the Irish at all, but of those, he was the lone voter to leave the Tar Heels off his ballot. North Carolina (6-2) has a better record than Notre Dame (5-2) and won the head-to-head matchup. In addition, four people voted Connecticut over North Carolina -- Jeff White, Myron Patton, Jimmy Burch and Mike Strain. Both teams are 6-2 and the Tar Heels beat the Huskies handily.
• Jon Wilner was the only voter to rank Navy (5-3) this week. Interestingly, he left Duke and Pittsburgh unranked. No shock over Duke … nobody ranked the Bue Devils. But the Panthers (5-2) have a better record than the Midshipmen and trounced them in Annapolis. However, if you're going to rank Navy, you might as well rank Duke, too. The Blue Devils have the same number of losses (3) and also beat Navy. Duke would surely love some publicity after last week's victory over one-time SEC Cinderella, Vanderbilt. In fact, that win certainly contributed to both Sagarin and Anderson/Hester ranking the SEC the fourth strongest conference this week.
• Mike DeArmond did something interesting this week when he voted Ohio State (No. 13) over USC (No. 15). He hasn't done that since his first ballot of the season. It's puzzling that DeArmond would rank the Trojans lower than the Buckeyes, since they beat the Buckeyes earlier this season and since the Buckeyes suffered their second loss this weekend.
• Finally, with Kansas, Pittsburgh and USF losing this week, I can stop trying to compare them all (although USF received the most votes of the three -- damn, couldn't help myself). Maybe with one or two more wins, I can start talking about Oregon State again. I'm always looking for another reason to quote Barbara Billingsley, and we all know as June Cleaver, she had a lot to say about the Beaver.
For more poll analysis, go to pollspeak.com.