Local Poll Week Five: Now It Gets Serious. Sort of.
A brief recap of what you might have missed if you decided to completely ignore college basketball for the past two weeks, plus some key points to bear in mind as we enter conference season:
1) Official unpaid local poll intern Boris lets us know that the average voter spends
18 26 minutes filling out his or her ballot. Boris thought this was good, but I figure if Joe Gibbs can spend 24 hours a day working on unsuccessful gameplans, we could at least put 20 30 minutes into our polls.
2) We seem to have misplaced about 25 percent of our voters. Maybe they never made it past New Year's. Once again, I'll open this thing up to new voters. Including The Hoya Fanatic, who believes all our poll voters to be overrated losers. Existing voters, feel free to invite your friends, spouses and baristas.
3) The Las Vegas oddsmakers have Maryland as the clear No. 1 in our area. Georgetown is the only other team on their Top 25 radar. I'll publish Vegas's full Top 25 on Wednesday. The Hoya Fanatic believes Vegas to be cursed by clouded judgment, regional biases, genetic insufficiencies, etc.
4) After about the top two, this poll continues to be very ugly. Like, Sam Cassell ugly. During my vacation, American and Navy both failed to prove they might actually belong on a Top Anything with wretched losses, Virginia Tech lost another heartbreaker (at Marshall), Virginia became unspeakable, George Mason lost yet another game it probably should have lost (at Drexel), the great hope that is VCU lost to Appalachian State, the great hope that is ODU lost at home to Winthrop, and so on. Which is probably why the Maryland women received a first-place vote this week. The Hoya Fanatic believes that vote was cast by Satan.
5) On the bright side, William & Mary won four straight, including three straight against area teams.
6) But the long and short of it is, the composition of the Top 11 didn't change for the third straight week. Man is this boring. At least the NBA now lets you embed player cards in blog items.
First-place votes in parentheses. There were 39 voters, but one left first-place blank and one had the MD women first.
1. Maryland (31)
--Thursday vs. Iona.
--Terps beat Siena, which was picked fourth in the Crayola Conference behind Periwinkle, Goldenrod and perennial powerhouse Raw Umber. (Bill Fitzgerald)
2. Georgetown (6) (10-3) 351
--Saturday vs. Notre Dame.
--Not sure who looked worse this weekend - Michigan's football or basketball team. It's a good thing that Tommy Amaker is only in his sixth year of "rebuilding" the program. (Nathan Fennessy)
3. Virginia Tech (9-4) 267
--Wednesday vs. Richmond, Saturday at Duke.
--I didn't think the loss to Marshall was that bad until I found out the Thundering Herd lost to UMKC! Thus, by the transitive principle, Mike Jones could beat Tech singlehandedly. (Jon Lauder)
4. George Washington (8-3) 264
--Wednesday vs. Fordham, Saturday vs. Marshall.
--If it weren't for Karl Hobbs having to deal with reporters asking stupid questions, GW would've easily defeated Air Force. (Eric Swensen)
5. Virginia (8-3) 220
--Wednesday vs. Gonzaga, Sunday vs. Stanford.
--They beat Arizona, remember? (Ira Weintraub)
6. Virginia Commonwealth (9-3) 199
--Wednesday at No. 10 Towson, Saturday at James Madison.
--Even with the loss to Appalachian State, I still can't drop them. Is there any local team winning right now? (Jon Lauder)
7. Old Dominion (8-4) 186
--Wednesday at Northeastern, Saturday vs. No. 8 George Mason.
--There's no such thing as a "good loss" to Winthrop, no matter what their record. (Jamie Paquette)
8. George Mason (6-5) 107
--Wednesday vs. William & Mary, Saturday at No. 7 Old Dominion.
--The loss to Drexel will look a lot better a few months down the line when Drexel become the new George Mason. (Adam Lewis)
9. Navy (9-5) 53
--Tuesday night at N.J.I.T., Saturday at Bucknell.
--Navy remains the odds-on favorite to win the Division III national title. (Eric Swensen)
10. Towson (6-5) 51
--Wednesday vs. No. 6 VCU, Saturday at Georgia State.
--No. 1 in the Suburban Baltimore Area Hoops Poll. (Sean McLernon)
11. American (7-6) 27
--Tuesday night vs. St. Francis (Pa.), Saturday at Lehigh.
--You don't give Longwood a rematch! They're like Rocky, if he was a tiny college from a sleepy Southern town instead of a palooka from Philly. (Jamie Paquette)
Also receiving votes: William & Mary 16, Maryland women 10, Howard 3, Richmond 3, Hampton 2, James Madison 2, VMI 2, Longwood 1, Loyola 1, Mount St. Mary's 1.
January 2, 2007; 6:49 PM ET
Categories: College Basketball
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