Archive for Monday, October 15, 2007

Computers say KU better than USC, Florida

Kansas cornerback Chris Harris (16) celebrates with his fellow Jayhawk defenders after intercepting a Baylor Bears pass. Wednesday, Harris was named Big 12 defensive newcomer of the year.

Kansas cornerback Chris Harris (16) celebrates with his fellow Jayhawk defenders after intercepting a Baylor Bears pass. Wednesday, Harris was named Big 12 defensive newcomer of the year.

October 15, 2007


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KU cracks BCS standings after Baylor beatdown

One day after demolishing the Baylor Bears 58-10 at Memorial Stadium, the Kansas Jayhawk football team debuted in the 13th slot of the BCS standings. Enlarge video

The humans have spoken all year long. Now, the computers are thinking that Kansas University's football team is pretty good, too.

The first Bowl Championship Series standings were released Sunday, with Kansas ranking a flashy 13th in the nation.

The BCS standings are a complex equation that factors in two major polls - the USA Today poll and the Harris Interactive poll - and six computer rankings that take into account a number of complicated factors such as schedule strength.

The human polls, which count for two-thirds of the equation, collectively ranked KU 15th.

The computers, the other third, have the Jayhawks tied for eighth.

But until one understands the complex mathematical components involved - and there are plenty - knowing that KU's average is 0.5170 in the first BCS standings probably doesn't make Jayhawk fans do a cartwheel.

But ranking 13th might. And ranking one spot ahead Southern California, two ahead of Florida and three ahead of rival Missouri definitely will.

KU coach Mark Mangino didn't hear about the BCS standings until a reporter asked him Sunday afternoon. Even after the fact, he didn't put down the phone to do a cartwheel of his own.

"As I've said before," Mangino responded, "I'm really focused on what the ranking would be at the end of the season."

Until then, everybody else will be keeping close track. Besides the lofty placement in the BCS formula, the Jayhawks are ranked 15th this week in the three major polls - the Associated Press, the USA Today and the Harris polls - following their 58-10 drubbing of Baylor on Saturday.

Of course, the human-picked polls don't mean a hill of beans compared to the big daddy. The BCS poll determines which two teams play in the BCS National Championship game Jan. 7 in New Orleans. It also has a hand in figuring out who plays in the four BCS bowls - Fiesta, Rose, Sugar and Orange - after conference champions take their spots.

But six regular-season games - including Saturday's showdown at Colorado -separate the Jayhawks from postseason dreams of any sort. So Mangino is keeping his head out of the clouds for now, even if it's an almighty computer passing out some significant midseason praise.

"I'm not thinking about what polls are better or have more clout," Mangino said. "We appreciate anybody that's recognizing the way we've played to this point. But there's not really a whole lot to jump up and down about."


mom_of_three 10 years, 7 months ago

Texas was 0-2 in the Big 12, and yet they are still ranked. What is up with that?

sourpuss 10 years, 7 months ago

They're Texas. Though our conference should be proud that half of the teams are in the top 25. That is quite a conference...

Noweigh 10 years, 7 months ago

Congrats to all involved in the football program at all levels. I'll enjoy watching us take on Mizzou at Arrowhead. Hope the "boycotters" have given their tickets to real fans.

Haiku_Cuckoo 10 years, 7 months ago

If you don't have your tickets for the Arrowhead game, you may want to act quick. I heard there are only 1,500 left.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 10 years, 7 months ago

OU is ranked higher than we are, but aren't we #1 in BXII? No other team in the BXII is undefeated! How long has it been since KU has looked so good?

riverdrifter 10 years, 7 months ago

Just got back from the Chiefs game and we thought we heard them announce that it was a sell-out. Lot of crowd noise at the time.

The_Voice_of_Reason 10 years, 7 months ago

Well I guess we can get rid of that old saying that Lawrence is a basketball town with a football problem... Go Hawks!

kansas778 10 years, 7 months ago

This is great for the program. BTW, in the BCS, the impartial computer rankings have KU 8th.

olmsted78 10 years, 7 months ago

It's all great 'n all that we have been placed in the top 10-20, however, do these rankings really mean a whole lot at this point? We look real quick and athletic, well-coached, but we still have not even played a ballgame outside of the state yet. ...or against a whole lot of solid competition.

still exciting, but let's see what happens if we can take some of these upcoming road games-- starting with CU on saturday.

forget about the national rankings, everyone's beating each other anyway this season. ...let's keep routing week by week, one match at a time, and stay focused on our conference schedule-- then some real good things should happen.

keep flying under the national radar KU. don't believe the rankings hype.

nobody1793 10 years, 7 months ago

Can you imagine a big game between KU and Kentucky on Jan. 2nd? In F00TBALL?!

Mandie Eutsler 10 years, 7 months ago

Last season we played south florida, who is unbeaten and ranked no.2. we beat them 13-7. the preseason scheduling problem is that no preseason ranked teams want to play us. they have nothing to gain from playing us. for one we just might beat them and that would be bad for them. two, if we lose to a ranked team in the preseason, we should have and that does nothing for the ranked team. Now since this season is going so well, we won't have a "creampuff" preseason schedule. Hopefully we will get a chance to play the sec, big east etc. Mangino is doing a great job. if nothing else he's making ku a place where kids want to come and play. when choosing a school, recruits think about tv games, playing time, and venues. with the new facilities going on and a promised game at a genuine nfl stadium, including more tv exposure the jayhawks are on the up and up. the only pushover team left in out schedule would be iowa state. CU beat up on oklahoma, they are definitely better than anyone gives them credit for. As for mangino yelling at players, especially pendleton, he deserved it. first and foremost, he could get hurt. adrian peterson broke his collarbone, he was hit but it was the same kind of dive. second a fifteen yard penalty hurts the team. him yelling at pendleton was as much for his well being as for the team. i say whatever gets the job done coach. everywhere mangino has been involved with a program it has done very well and even a couple of nat. champs. if he can keep them motivated and focused, i think we can go unbeaten. one game at a time kids.

Confrontation 10 years, 7 months ago

Everyone should avoid the Red Lyon during the KU-Missery game. Actually, everyone should avoid that crappy bar on all occassions.

blessed3x 10 years, 7 months ago

Central Michigan SE Louisiana Toledo Florida Intl. KSU Baylor

Is that really the schedule of a ranked team? I'll admit that KU looks pretty good this year, but they haven't really played anyone yet except maybe KSU. Shoot I could probably gather up 20 guys from the office and beat most of the teams on this schedule so far.

Chris Bohling 10 years, 7 months ago

Call me crazy but I think what we need is a....

32 team playoff. Seriously. I realize it would take forever, but given the turnover in the top 25 this season, there are probably at least 30 teams that could beat LSU, OSU, and USF on any given day. Even a 12 or 16 team playoff would probably leave out teams that are legit title contenders, but had a bad day (read: Missouri, West Virginia). Only a 32 team playoff would truly determine the best team - the one that could play the best, most consistant football down the stretch.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

Blessed, yes, I think that is the schedule of a ranked team. No, they didn't play the top 4 teams in the country to begin the season, but they won the games they were supposed to win and by huge margins; they beat a team that many thought they would lose to on their home field. KU 52--Central Michigan 7 , KU 62--SE Louisiana 0, KU45 --Toledo 13, KU 55 - Florida Intl., KU-30 KSU-24, KU 58-Baylor 10. KU will still have to prove itself for the rest of its schedule, but they have taken care of business thus far. Remember that KU used to play these teams and would lose to them or play close games with similar caliber teams.

While I wouldn't think a head-to-head between KU and USC would lead to a victory for KU, I think the human polls are terribly biased based on past history. There is no good reason for polls to come out the first month of the season. I think the BCS has it partly right by waiting a while before releasing one. The error, I believe, is that they use human polls that are influenced from the beginning of the season.

Mangino is using the Snyder model of building a program from doormat to respectable. You get victories (we have 6 in 6), you get on TV (2 consecutive weeks televised, two more have been confirmed), and you get bowl eligible and go to bowl games (which we have). These are the key ingredients to getting better players to come and play for you. Think about it, why would ANYONE go to Manhattan, KS? Yet, they did, to go play for a winning program once Snyder implemented the same scheme Mangino is using.

Finally, I GUARANTEE you couldn't get 20 guys from the office that would last the first quarter against the teams KU played. Most of the guys from the office would be winded after one series. I GUARANTEE it.

Chris Golledge 10 years, 7 months ago

Funny, people always refer to computers as saying something. Computers say nothing; they just print out the results of some evaluation that someone has programmed into them. That someone may or may not be any more right or wrong than someone else. The only advantage their evaluation has is that they can't change their minds about what is an important factor during the process. So, it can be less biased, but it can also lead to wildly inaccurate results.

Go Hawks! but don't get overly excited just because a computer 'says' something. There is no magic there.

guesswho 10 years, 7 months ago

Where are the naysayers who don't like the fact Mangino yells at his players? He has instilled so much more discipline then Mr. Terry (but he is such a nice guy) Allen. The Arrowhead game will be exciting, and I think it will help recruiting - not that many college players go on to Sunday football so it is a chance to play at an NFL stadium.

Yes, we haven't had the strongest non-conference schedule by any stretch, but they certainly weren't squeaker victories.

And, as usual, bad word choice by LJW. Computers don't think. They are programmed by people who (sometimes) think.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

I agree with the comments about the computers, but they are cold calculating machines. You tell them what should be weighted and how much weight it should be given and they spit out a result. They don't care about the popularity of Ohio State; they don't care that Bo Schembechler once coached Michigan; they don't care if there is a big-mouthed player on the team that people don't like. THAT is why I like the computer rankings. The number they spit out is not dependent upon whether the "computer" stayed up late enough to see the west coast teams play or whether the "computer" is a Michigan alum.

I edited my previous comment regarding previous years' influence on current rankings, so I will add my thoughts because the topic was brought up. I think last year's performance does matter. A team that was good last year and retains much of its team has a higher probability of being good this year. I think is not only reasonable, but essential, that the pre-season poll is based on previous performance; what else WOULD it be based on? That said, I don't think there should be polls for the first few weeks for that very reason and the "uphill battle" that was mentioned. If the was good last year and that spills over to the current season, it will show up in the game stats/performance.

Ultimately, give me a computer poll based on agreed upon statistics with agreed upon weighting. Then teams know up front what needs to be done. Do they need to run up the score? Do they need to score more touchdowns? Do you get points for being both good offensively and defensively( e.g., winning games 21-0 vs. winning 69-67). That is all teams can ask for, is a consistent standard; the computer gives you that (the BCS is NOT a computer ranking), human polls do not.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

Oh, and for Mangino yelling. I have no problem with him yelling. The manner in which he yelled at the guy who dived into the end-zone was absolutely appalling. I posted on the topic then and I stand by it now; I feel that his tirade and the manner of the tirade were unacceptable. That said, I don't think the issue is an either-or situation where you you can't criticize aspects of how the man conducts himself. He is human and has his faults. The diving into the end-zone call was a result of a stupid rule in a game where you expect guys to play on the edge of insanity and then expect them to turn it off when they do something successful. Those are automatons, not humans. Celebration is one thing, taunting is quite another. You can't celebrate a good play? Come on! Had a flag not been thrown on that play, Mangino would not have gone on his tirade for a guy diving into the end-zone PERIOD.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

I concur with logic's last post. However, I was against the behavior demonstrated by Mangino in the infamous YouTube video. I understand that the game is emotional and that yelling is going to happen, but yelling is the "easy way" to try to teach. It isn't effective though. Mangino's tirade and berating a player in front of not only a camera, but in front of thousands of people was UNACCEPTABLE. That said, he is doing a far better job than Terry Allen. Allen was a D2 player and coach, and is a D2 coach again. I wish him luck, but he was not long for D1.

etsi_truss 10 years, 7 months ago



Sean Livingstone 10 years, 7 months ago

Stay low and humble till we beat USC and get the championship. High expectation will kill a good underdog...

jumpin_catfish 10 years, 7 months ago

I'm not impressed yet, they need to beat somebody real!

Leprechaunking13 10 years, 7 months ago

From my understanding Mangino yelled at pendleton not so much for diving into the endzone and celebrating but that he did it by himself and not with the 10 other players on the field who were blocking for him so that he could return the ball all the way. Which may seem like he went off the edge to you but it's his call and his team and it's up to him that he wants his team to be completely unified and work as one, which is exactly how they have played through their first 6 games. Also they may have played a few cupcakes before the conference season but they beat the teams they were supposed to and a lot of teams this season didn't, KU used to be one of those! They could play harder schedule to start out but a 3-1 team or 2-2 team would not have been able to come back and take the lead over K-state like this team did. Lets be excited for the rest of this football season and the games we have played already.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 10 years, 7 months ago

Polls are nothing but someone's opinion or whatever someone feeds into their opinionated computer. None of it means a single thing. The only poll that counts is the numbers on the board at the end of the season. And due to the present system, where those damned computers are called up, it still is not a fair system. The only way is the same was the NCAA Basketball tournament is done. Top 10 or 12 schools line up, duke it out and the last one left standing wins. Period. But I think that maybe some like Boise State may still be overlooked.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

What Mangino does is "his call?" I think that clearly has limits. Mangino can't do ANYTHING he pleases to his players and that is the very point of the discussion about what he did. If he felt that giving them 40 lashes for mistakes do you think that would fly? The claim that Mangino was mad and went on his tirade BECAUSE Pendleton "celebrated alone" (which he didn't, he dived into the end zone, then celebrated with his teammates, who immediately jumped all over him) is inaccurate. One of the first things Mangino says is "you got us a f------ penalty" (which he repeats TWICE)... the LAST thing he says is "you did it all on your own?" In the middle, he says that... you got us a ------- penalty because it's all you... Seems to me the penalty is the issue. In fairness to Pendleton, he did do a lot of it...he is seen outrunning at least 3 or 4 opponents at the end. No, he didn't do it all himself, and other guys likely opened up the gaps for him, but he didn't celebrate alone either. No penalty, no tirade. The penalty for celebration (what was excessive about him diving into the end-zone?) is DUMB. (The video is still up at YouTube... search for "mangino"). Just because Mangino has a "winner" on the field does not mean he gets a free pass regarding his behavior and methods. He has a winner for now in spite of this behavior, not because of it.

frwent- an "opinionated computer?" As someone said earlier, a computer just spits out what you tell it to do.

jayhawks71 10 years, 7 months ago

sundance, I agree that Pendleton could have been hurt, but oddly enough Mangino makes no mention of that during his tirade. Further, Mangino is hardly a model of self-control, yet he demands that an 18(?) year old playing a game where you are on the edge of insanity most of the time not celebrate? Seems a bit hypocritical.

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