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Local Hoops Poll Week Three: Huh?

Proving that the AP has no monopoly on slightly odd voting patterns, I present our latest, Still-to-be-Named, Narrowly Defined Mid-Atlantic DI Hoops poll, featuring the 27 Division I squads in Maryland/DC/Virginia. Seriously, I thought my well-balanced readers would provide a much-needed antidote to irrational poll voters across the nation, but apparently they subscribe to the Carson Palmer school of democracy.

The top seven teams remained unchanged from last week. But No. 5 Virginia Tech, on the strength of a narrow home win over what figures to be the ACC's worst team (Wake Forest), nearly overtook No. 4 GW, a team that beat Va. Tech head to head and didn't lose last week. More understandably, No. 7 VCU--which beat UAB and has won six straight--came within a whisker of passing No. 6 ODU, which had just one meaningless game last week.

Seriously, I anxiously await your explanations. (Alan Diaz -- AP)

Here's where I really need some people to explain their votes: George Mason, which was idle, lost the eighth spot to Navy, which recorded a spectacular win over a Division III school!!!! What, you didn't think Mason could have handled Delaware Valley? That 25-point win, against a Division III school that was actually tied with Navy in the second half, really impressed you that much? Explain yourselves, please.

The only other movement was American and Towson switching places at the bottom. And some big games coming up: On Wednesday night No. 11 Towson and scoring machine Gary Neal travel to No. 3 Georgetown, and on Saturday afternoon No. 10 American visits No. 2 Maryland and No. 8 Navy visits No. 3 Georgetown. Hopefully ESPN will start calling it Shakedown Saturday or something.

First-place votes in parentheses.

1. Virginia (37) (6-1) 548
--Tomorrow, vs. Appalachian State.
--After Dave Leitao got ejected in the first half against Hampton, UVA was forced to play without a coach for the rest of their win. For the upperclassmen, this was just like the Pete Gillen era again. (Matthew Cockerham)
2. Maryland (19) (10-2) 528
--Saturday vs. No. 10 American.
--UMKC just gave up another Mike Jones 3-pointer. (Harrison Goodman)
3. Georgetown (1) (7-3) 418
--Wednesday vs. No. 11 Towson, Saturday vs. No. 8 Navy.
--After the Hoyas beat Winston Salem, Roy Hibbert is rushed to the National Aquarium in Baltimore to save two seals from choking to death. (Bill Fitzgerald)
4. George Washington (7-2) 374
--No games this week.
--Karl Hobbs using two-week break from games to attend Bob Knight School of Media Management. (Eric Swensen)
5. Virginia Tech (7-3) 362
--Thursday at Seton Hall.
--Happy Hanukkah, Seth Greenberg. There is nothing more beautiful than Blacksburg at Hanukkah time. (Matt Mandel)
6. Old Dominion (7-3) 260
--Tonight vs. UAB.
--Sitting pretty on top of ACC-lite. (Marc Gallant)
7. VCU (8-2) 258
--Wednesday vs. Delaware.
--Six wins in a row has to count for something, especially for a mid-major playing other mid-majors. (Ira Weintraub)
8. Navy (8-3) 119
--Wednesday vs. Washington College, Saturday at No. 3 Georgetown.
--Delaware Valley College Web site informs readers that horticulture scholarships are available. (Nathan Fennessy)
9. George Mason (4-4) 100
--Thursday at Holy Cross.
--Coach Jim Larranaga scheduled no games last week, instead choosing to meet Robert DeNiro. Seriously. (Ajay Vellore)
10. American (7-3) 98
--Saturday at No. 2 Maryland.
--Jeff Jones deserves another week in the Top 11 before he and the Eagles get killed at Maryland and Virginia. (Sean McLernon)
11. Towson (5-4) 96
--Wednesday at No. 3 Georgetown,
--Should have beaten Temple. (This is what happens when you take really long layoffs; see Tigers, Detroit.) (Dave Richardson)
Also receiving votes: Liberty 22, Loyola 9, Richmond 5, Howard 5, Radford 4, VMI 2, Coppin State 1.

By Dan Steinberg  |  December 18, 2006; 3:33 PM ET
Categories:  College Basketball  
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If we didn't have Mason on our ballot last week, and we didn't have Mason on our ballot this week, do we have to explain anything?

Posted by: FS | December 18, 2006 3:45 PM | Report abuse

My top 10 was unchanged from last week, which could just mean I was an idiot two weeks in a row. I thought about bumping up Navy a spot until I realized that Delaware Valley is a DIII team coming off a 5-20 season in something called the Freedom Conference.

Posted by: Eric Swensen | December 18, 2006 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Liberty got 22 votes? Yes, it has 6 wins, but three were against Non-Div I opponents. And can someone explain how Liberty played St. Francis-PA twice in a 12 day span?

Posted by: Ned | December 18, 2006 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Since there is debate on what news should get the most press on the DC Steinbog. Why dont we have a local poll of the Area teams (college and professional).

So for this week it would be:
1) Caps
2) Hershey Bears
3) Wizards
4) Terps
5) Skins
100) George Mason

Posted by: Joe DaytoDay Juneau | December 18, 2006 3:59 PM | Report abuse


Thats exactly right. I've got no 'splaining to do cause Mason has not defiled my Poll yet.

Posted by: Marc | December 18, 2006 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I'm incredulous about the Mason backlash.

I've ranked Mason 9th the past two weeks, right above American and Navy. Because I've looked at the teams Navy and American have played, and I don't believe for a second that Mason couldn't perform just as well against the likes of Longwood, Mount St. Mary's, NJ Institute of Technology and Morgan State (American's big wins) or the equally impressive Delaware Valley that apparently nearly took down Navy. Navy's DI wins include a 2 point win over Longwood in overtime on the road and a 4 point win in double overtime against Howard at home.

FS, Marc, and Monsieur Juneau- who are you guys voting in ahead of Mason?

Posted by: bryc3 | December 18, 2006 4:49 PM | Report abuse

my comments get about as much props as coppin state. BOO urn! and boo williams!

Posted by: thigh master | December 18, 2006 4:55 PM | Report abuse

The very idea that anyone would rank Maryland and especially Virgina ahead of Georgetown shows just how idiotic the voters behind the poll truly are.

Posted by: Bleeding Hoya Blue | December 18, 2006 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Possibly true, Hoya. But bear these facts in mind:

1) The "also receiving votes" category of the AP poll goes Virginia, Maryland, Georgetown.

2) It's very early, but the RPI says Maryland is the best locally, Virginia is second, and G'town is, ahem, sixth.

3) Many of my voters know how to spell Virginia.

Kidding, kidding. Can't wait till Wednesday.

Posted by: Dan Steinberg | December 18, 2006 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I don't have Mason in my Top 10 because I think you have to reward teams for winning games. GMU doesn't have a bad loss,nor do they have a good win. Give them some credit for winning on the road, but close losses to Bucknell and Creighton are still losses to unremarkable teams. If they win either of those games, they could be #8. Win both and they are probably Top 5.

I also think Va. Tech and VCU should be rewarded for good wins. Teams 3-7 are very close, but I think Va Tech should be ahead of GW and Georgetown ahead of ODU because of the rest of their results even though the head-to-head indicates otherwise.

Posted by: Bill Fitzgerald | December 18, 2006 5:24 PM | Report abuse

My beef with Mason is that they almost lost to Radford and their other wins are over a not so good Hampton, FL International, and barely over Cleveland State. Even last year they didn't really dominate the CAA. So until they start rolling off some wins I'm going to vote Gary Neal above them. And G-town lost to ODU so they do not deserve to be any higher then they are now.

Posted by: Marc | December 18, 2006 5:31 PM | Report abuse

If anyone wants the correct rankings, just let me know. Happy to oblige.


Posted by: Reader Glenn | December 18, 2006 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Watch out Navy - Washington College is another DIII school. Here we come...

Posted by: WC Alum | December 18, 2006 7:22 PM | Report abuse

I got a "this page can't be displayed" message after submitting my poll and was too lazy to try again. Maybe my absence created the poll shake up. I like to think so - every vote(r) counts....

Posted by: Jon | December 18, 2006 8:00 PM | Report abuse

I was just looking at the AP and ESPN/USA TODAY polls and noticed Virginia has 39 points in the AP, but NOT a single one in ESPN/USA Today...hmm.

Posted by: Mark Cunningham | December 18, 2006 9:34 PM | Report abuse

a coleman collins missed dunk is the difference between 4th and 5th for VA Tech.

Posted by: pete | December 18, 2006 11:25 PM | Report abuse

so the terps who beat msu, st. john's, and the illini (all away) should be ranked below a georgetown team that lost to ODU and oregon at home? yeah, we lost to notre dame, but notre dame went on to beat #6 alabama and boston college is pretty good. does georgetown even have one quality win? you've obviously been bleeding a little too much hoya blood to honestly think that georgetown deserves to be rated ahead of virginia or maryland.

Posted by: liz | December 19, 2006 12:40 AM | Report abuse

Georgetown at #1? Pfft. I voted them Sixth.

Posted by: FS | December 19, 2006 8:58 AM | Report abuse

I'm with FS and Marc- no explaining by me re: Mason. They haven't been in my top 10 YET.

As for G'town, I'm (kinda) with FS again-- they're 5th and staying there unless GW loses to someone really crappy, or the Hoyas beat someone decent from a good conference (outside the SEC's Vanderbilt whose wins are as groundbreaking as G'Towns... and LOST to Wake Forest).

Posted by: smperk | December 19, 2006 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and, what happens with next Monday's Poll?

Posted by: smperk | December 19, 2006 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Good to see UVA ranked somewhere.

Posted by: Eddie C | December 19, 2006 11:08 AM | Report abuse

The Poll does not take vacation for Christmas! If anything the comments will be enhanced by holiday beer.

Posted by: Marc | December 19, 2006 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Delaware Valley College may not have much of a men's basketball team, but unless SEPTA has changed things, it has a rail transit stop on the R5 commuter line from Doylestown to Philadelphia -- which is more than George Mason University can claim (despite having its name on the Orange Line terminus several miles from the campus).

Posted by: Vincent | December 19, 2006 3:46 PM | Report abuse

"So for this week it would be:
1) Caps
2) Hershey Bears
3) Wizards
4) Terps
5) Skins"

Is 4) Terp women, Terp men, or a joint entry?

Posted by: Vincent | December 19, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Next time do your homework Steinberg.

First, the AP poll is cr*p. Who votes in it? Writers. In other words, frustrated jocks who figure the next best thing to making a team is writing about it, because they can show how much smarter they are than everyone else. The ESPN poll, at least, is voted on by coaches, who actually know something about the game. And to their credit, Virginia doesn't even get one vote.

It really is amazing to me that in a year where G'town is clearly on the ascendency, everyone is eager to rip them down. Have they had some tough games and some silly loses? Absolutely, but when you look at where Oregon is now, that lose is easier to understand. So, we come back to where we were before -- with Georgetown on the rise.

Posted by: Hoya Blue | December 19, 2006 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Note to Georgetown fans: You've lost THREE games. That's more than UVa and Maryland combined. Who have you beaten so far? Anyone? UVa and Maryland have both beaten ranked teams. Get over yourselves. Go beat a good team, let UVa and Marryland accrue some losses, and then start whining.

Posted by: FS | December 19, 2006 4:33 PM | Report abuse

in an effort to fuel the mason vs. delaware valley college fire, i figured i'd steal some good stuff from their website. only i can't, because it's currently down.

i think that says just about everything that needs to be said about the prowess navy's basketball team.

Posted by: bryc3 | December 19, 2006 5:03 PM | Report abuse


If Virginia and Maryland are so damn terrific, why aren't they ranked?

'Nuff said.

Go play with the other children and let the adults continue their conversation.

Posted by: Hoyas Rule | December 19, 2006 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I don't think anyone was arguing that Maryland and Virginia deserved to be ranked in the national poll. pretty sure they were arguing that UMD who beat MSU, illinois, and SJU and UVa who beat arizona were better than georgetown who's best win comes over esteemed basketball powerhouse Vanderbuilt deserve to be ranked higher than GU in a LOCAL HOOPS POLL. I think everyone will give GU their props when they you know, win games.

Posted by: liz | December 19, 2006 6:31 PM | Report abuse


I retract everything I ever said and I think everyone should vote for Georgetown as number 1. every time a team is ranked number 1 in this local poll, they lose the next week. UVa just lost to Appalachian State. Ouch.

Posted by: liz | December 19, 2006 6:36 PM | Report abuse

wow ... big week for app state ... a national championship and beating the hoos ...

terps back at #1

Posted by: littles | December 20, 2006 1:11 AM | Report abuse

Hoya Blue:

It may be called the ESPN Coaches poll, but they are usually filled out by sports information directors or their interns - speaking as a former sports info employee. And coaches usually only know about their own team and the team they play next. You think Gary Williams is staying up late to watch west coast games?Bottom line, none of these polls has a shred of credibility. That's why we play games.

Posted by: Jeff | December 20, 2006 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Hoya Blue, get back to us when Georgetown schedules GWU and Maryland.

Posted by: Vincent | December 20, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

What was that about "wait til UVA and Maryland start accruing some losses" -- the 'hoos have certainly begun the trend with back to back losses against Appalachian State and (5-6, not quite the Andrew Bogut days) Utah.

Posted by: Jack | December 20, 2006 2:33 PM | Report abuse

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