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3-point stance: Computers vs. Voters

10/16/2011

1.The computer ratings will be more accurate as they receive more data, which explains why there is such a discrepancy of opinion between voters and software when it comes to Wisconsin (voters 4th, computers 11th), Oklahoma State (6/1) and Kansas State (12/7). It’s clear that the computers love the Big 12. It’s clear that the voters weigh margin of victory, at least in the case of the Badgers. All the computers measure is Wisconsin’s lack of competition.

2.The Heisman Trophy is the near-exclusive property of quarterbacks and running backs, and you can scratch the latter. After injuries to Oregon’s LaMichael James (elbow) and South Carolina’s Marcus Lattimore (knee) on the past two Saturdays, Alabama’s Trent Richardson is the last rusher with the production and profile to remain in the discussion. On Nov. 5, Richardson will take the national stage against the only other non-quarterback who’s gotten any Heisman notice, LSU corner Tyrann Mathieu.

3.You may quibble that Eastern Michigan’s 4-3 record includes two victories over FCS schools (Howard, Alabama State). You may argue that the Eagles’ average margin of defeat, 31.3 points, is a truer measure of their ability. But after the 35-28 defeat of Central Michigan, and with the next three games at home, Ron English’s team has a great chance to win at least five games. That hasn’t happened since 1995 (6-5). English, the former defensive coordinator right up the road at Michigan, is making progress in his third year.