LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 11: Quarterback Matt Barkley, seen here thinking about Reddit while effortlessly throwing a touchdown pass with his perfect hands. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
The AP top 25 came out over the weekend. It made little sense, but this means nothing bad for you in 2012 because years that make no sense are immensely entertaining.
1. USC. The most sensible pick in the 2012 poll is by consensus a team with a mediocre defense, a new starter at left tackle, and no established running back. This is not insulting USC: this a fine pick for number one, and thus an insult in general to the field of college football teams legitimately considered contenders in 2012. Matt Barkley is also beautiful and perfect, and this is why Nick Saban hides in the corners of his office at night stabbing a picture of him and going I'LL MAKE YOU FEEL MY PAIN, YOU TALL BEAUTIFUL PERSON! YOU'LL FEEL UGLY! I'LL MAKE YOU FEEL UGLY!
2. Alabama. "It's hard to replace that many starters on defense and a Heisman-quality running back, especially with questions about their ability to stretch a defense at the wideout position." <---previews from 2011! Never cite actual personnel when it comes to a Nick Saban team, and just assume that in an even-numbered year someone else will win because those who make contracts with Satan only receive benefits in sinister-numbered years.
3. LSU. Voters wanted to move them down to six after Mathieu's departure, but Bama would only let them get halfway there.
4. Oklahoma. Further proof no one ever looks at depth charts, because Oklahoma's is so injury-riddled that it will literally start to bleed from the frame of your computer if you look at it in Chrome. But, um...Landry Jones and stuff!
5. Oregon. Less a belief in a football team's particulars, and more of a video game franchise because a.) new graphics every year, and b.) same reliable gameplay no matter who "QB 1" and RB 2" are. New Mascot Game feature includes 11 Chip Kelly's on a team! Aw, wook at the widdle legs a-pumpin'!
6. Georgia. A Mark Richt team with high expectations is the bluest meth of all.
7. Florida State. "104th rushing offense in college football in 2011, and did that playing in the ACC." "SOLD!"
8. Michigan. We would laugh, but they won 11 games last year with a defense made of mannequins and Greg Robinson's All-MAC all-stars. Ol' Pizzafarts is capable of this, and besides writing in "Denard Robinson" in the "why" column, we have no real answers as to how he accomplishes it.
9. South Carolina. The entire season rests on a strip of tissue 38 millimeters wide located in Marcus Lattimore's knee, and on Connor Shaw preventing the theft of the Declaration of Independence by a crazed Stephen Garcia.
10. Arkansas. If John L. Smith is your coach, colors are a more appropriate way of representing your team's value. Current color: deep orangey-yellow for piss that is both hot, and yet still disturbing in shade like a John L. Smith team should be.
11. West Virginia. [COMPLETELY BIASED CANNOT JUDGE SHOULD BE TEN SPOTS HIGHER IT'S NOT GAY IF IT'S WITH Y-CROSS AND STICK/DRAW]
12. Wisconsin. Numbers of beers in a pack/number of Wisconsin football in national rankings/#illuminattylite
13. Michigan State. You see how pollsters work, don't you? They all literally got to the teens, realized they didn't actually have the Big Ten's championship game participants in, checked for eligibility (good move in the Big Ten these days,) and then just sandwiched them in order of finish. This is literally what they did here, but it doesn't make this a bad spot for Michigan State. It just makes polls dumber than they should be thanks to a total lack of creativity.
14. Clemson. No one says enough positive things about Clemson's consistency on defense, and it's about time we do that. For instance, there was that time when they . And what about ? People forget about both of those things too often.
15. Texas. Deeply underrated here, most likely due to Case McCoy's tragic Brittle Bone Disease. LIke a bird's bones, the doctors say.
16. Virginia Tech. The novelty of Virginia Tech being underrated is fun, isn't it cartwheeling Bud Foster?
17. Nebraska. Consistently the best four loss team in the United States in the Bo Pelini era. That's something we can't take away from them, so sure, 17 sounds like a great, arbitrary place to put them.
18. Ohio State. Creeping feeling that a team ineligible for things (and not roster-ravaged like Penn State) will play like demons with nothing to lose, but then again 1994 Auburn is one of teams that lives under our bed forever, so we would think this.
19. Oklahoma State. A 12 win team at 19, even with a freshman quarterback, just bellows "underrated."
20. TCU. Just the spot where you put teams not in major conferences who are pretty good, even though TCU is totally in the Big 12 this year, and 50% of pollsters likely forgot this. Thus the seat in the balcony, TCU. (Please don't tell anyone, as this is deeply embarrassing to pollsters, TCU.)
21. Stanford. See "Oklahoma State, Pac-12 version."
22. Kansas State. All Bill Snyder does is win football games and stock his office with terrifying Pinocchio dolls. The Zodiac Killer was never found, and was active on the West Coast from 1968-1970. Bill Snyder coached in the state of California from 1967 to 1972. These facts are randomly arranged; make no connections between them.
23. Florida. LOLOLOLOLOLnope [dies]
24. Boise State. Lost their entire offense, and yet still the bones tingle with hints of underratedness. Or cancer. They feel the same way, we're told, but don't see a doctor, that's for pussies, bro. Take some Jack3d and you'll be fine.
25. Louisville. Dammit, we were THIS close to getting a preseason ballot without a Big East team, and will just have to wait until the end of the season for this sweet, entirely probably dream to come true.