Week 6 Network Ranking

by Patrick Rhamey

Defeating last week's #1, Texas A&M is back in first place for the second time this season.

Top 25 (Explanation; Full Ranking)

  1. Texas A&M (+4)
  2. Alabama (+1)
  3. Michigan (+1)
  4. Clemson (-2)
  5. Tennessee (-4)
  6. Western Michigan (nc)
  7. Boise State (+1)
  8. Washington (+1)
  9. Nebraska (+1)
  10. Ohio State (+5)
  11. Virginia Tech (+15)
  12. Louisville (nc)
  13. Washington State* (+22)
  14. Florida State (+14)
  15. Wisconsin (-4)
  16. West Virginia (+9)
  17. North Carolina (+7)
  18. Stanford (+2)
  19. Georgia (+14)
  20. Baylor (-4)
  21. Auburn (+9)
  22. Arkansas (-7)
  23. Florida (-10)
  24. Troy (-7)
  25. Northwestern** (+13)

*Note, the Network doesn't include the negative effects of Washington State losing to Eastern Washington, as only 1-A teams are coded. They catapult upward this week due to defeating Stanford.  The absence of the EWU loss has no significant impact on Wash St.'s win network, but it does fail to capture loss network for Eastern Washington's impact.  However, because Eastern Washington has lost only to North Dakota State, who is undefeated, even if 1-AA teams were included, Washington State would probably remain in the top 25 for 1-A teams, albeit further down the list (this particular week).

**A similar issue lies with Northwestern's loss to Illinois State, who has lost 4 games in a row since defeating the wildcats.  Unlike Washington State, if 1-AA teams were included, Northwestern would be dramatically further down the ranking.  Ole Miss sits at #26.  Northwestern rose so much on a bye week because of Duke and Iowa's wins (and on down the chain).

This is the first time 2 teams that have lost to  1-AA teams have squeaked into the top 25 - usually if a team loses to a 1-AA team, they keep losing to 1-A teams and its not an issue.  In all likelihood this will resolve itself as both teams play out their seasons.  Why not code the 1-AA teams as well?  While it would make for a more comprehensive ranking, it would take too much time, and given the limited connections between 1-A  and 1-AA, would only improve things by the end of the season marginally.