Poll Attacks: One AP voter has five teams ranked ahead of Michigan State

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A radio host in Kansas City has Kansas ranked No. 1 and Michigan State ranked sixth.

The Poll Attacks were made for this kind of stuff.

Let’s get it!

ASSOCIATED PRESS POLL: The first thing I do when it’s time to write the Poll Attacks is see if a voter has a team ranked way higher or lower than where that team should be ranked. So the first thing I noticed this week is that Soren Petro has Michigan State sixth.

Simply put, that’s fairly silly.

Tom Izzo’s Spartans are now 9-0 with three wins over currently ranked teams — specifically No. 2 Kansas, No. 15 Providence and No. 22 Louisville. No other school in the entire nation has more than two wins over currently ranked teams, and none of the schools Soren has ranked ahead of Michigan State have more than one. Soren has Kentucky ranked two spots ahead of Michigan State even though Kentucky has just one Top 25 victory and a loss to unranked UCLA. Soren has Duke ranked one spot ahead of Michigan State even though Duke has zero Top 25 victories and a loss to Kentucky.

Bottom line, there’s no sensible way, based on the results of the games played, to have five teams ranked ahead Michigan State on an AP ballot, which is why 62 of 65 AP voters have Michigan State ranked first, and nobody besides Soren has MSU lower than third.

But here’s the best part: Soren’s top-ranked team is … Kansas!

Now listen: I really like Kansas — proof being that I have the Jayhawks ranked second in the Top 25 (and one). But you have to get really creative to justify having KU ranked No. 1 and five spots ahead of the same Michigan State team that’s undefeated with a win over the Jayhawks. I mean, you could argue KU was short-handed against Michigan State because Cheick Diallo didn’t play, I guess. But, I believe, you should try to rank teams in a way that suggests the results matter, and I don’t see how you can reasonably rank a one-loss team (Kansas) ahead of an undefeated team (Michigan State) when the undefeated team (Michigan State) has more Top 25 victories than every other the team in the country, including a victory over the one-loss team (Kansas) you have ranked No. 1. And, quite clearly, literally every AP voter not named Soren Petro agrees with me, which is why absolutely nobody other than Soren Petro has Michigan State ranked behind Kansas.

That said, I’ll give the dude credit for at least owning it.

The Kansas City radio host — yes, he works in Kansas City — is already going back-and-forth with folks on Twitter, and he doesn’t seem to be backing down. That doesn’t make him right, of course. But it does make him … I don’t know … strong-willed?

COACHES POLL: USA Today doesn’t release individual ballots. Which is too bad. Because I’d love to know the names of the men who are still ranking California, Indiana and LSU.

California is 6-2 with zero top-150 KenPom wins (and losses to San Diego State and Richmond). But the Bears are still on somebody’s Top 25 ballot. Indiana is 6-3 with zero top-60 KenPom wins (and losses to Duke, UNLV and Wake Forest). But the Hoosiers are still on somebody’s Top 25 ballot. And LSU is 4-3 with zero top-100 KenPom wins (and losses to North Carolina State, Marquette and College of Charleston). But, yep, the Tigers are still on somebody’s Top 25 ballot.

Each of those things is indefensible.

Just dumb, dumb, dumb.

Xavier was a big mover in this week's coaches' poll. (USATSI)
Xavier is now 13th in the coaches poll. Mickey Mouse approves. (USATSI)


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