When it comes to the coaches' poll in either college basketball or college football, I tend to agree with Rick Pitino.
"The bottom line is coaches aren't paying attention," he said yesterday. "Nor should they. I'm not blaming the coaches. They give it to an assistant coach, most of them, and the assistant coach is breaking down 100 films and watching recruits."
"I have no respect for the coaches' poll."
The reason this is relevant is that the 14th edition of this season's coaches' poll was unveiled yesterday, and it did not include a Louisville team that had just defeated Marquette and Georgetown. While leaving U of L out of the poll was a bit perplexing, it's the omission of the Cardinals coupled with the retention of the Golden Eagles that has the most people in the Derby City upset.
Let's compare the two teams as they currently exist:
Overall Record: Louisville 18-6, Marquette 16-6
Big East Record: Louisville 8-3, Marquette 6-5
Road Record: Louisville 5-2, Marquette 3-4
Record Over Last Ten Games: Louisville 8-2, Marquette 5-5
RPI: Louisville 17, Marquette 31
Strength of Schedule: Louisville 10, Marquette 28
Head-to-Head: Louisville 71, Marquette 51; Louisville 71, Marquette 57
At least the coaches don't help decide the national champion in this sport.
The Associated Press poll, on the other hand, ranked Louisville at No. 23 and dropped previously ranked Marquette from the poll entirely. Still, as Brian Bennett tells us, there were those who inexplicably saw more in the Golden Eagles than they did in the Cardinals.
Ed Graney of the Las Vegas Review Journal had Marquette 20th and U of L not ranked.
Terry Hutchens of the Indianapolis Star had Marquette 22nd, U of L not ranked.
Matt McCoy of WTVN-AM in Columbus, Ohio, had Marquette 19th, U of L 25th.
Elton Alexander of the Cleveland Plain Dealer had Marquette 22nd, U of L not ranked.
Keep up the exemplary work boys, after all, it isn't like you're being paid to do this or anything.
Since the polls have absolutely zero bearing on this sport, my advice to all of you - in order to keep frustration to a minimum - is to come up with your own personal poll and use that during college basketball thoughts or conversations. Also, make up a funny name for said poll, just because it will make life that much more enjoyable.
For those interested, Louisville is currently ranked 17th in the "Poop and Pee International Poll of Champions." Marquette is unranked.