The new rankings are here! The new rankings are here!
It was a big shakedown weekend across the country and the polls -- Coaches // Media-- reflect that fact. The wide differences between the human polls and what the computers are showing have started to dissipate with a few notable exceptions. Pertinently:
- The stodginess inherent in the function of human polls is still underrating Cornell.
- Math's lack of ability to consider Shamel Bratton's indefinite suspension is probably overrating Virginia for the time being.
- North Carolina would apparently need to commit genocide to fall out of the top-10.
- The RPI is still missing the boat on Maryland because the RPI is stupid.
To the poll aggregation! (Some quick thoughts follow after the jump.)
LAXPOWER: These are the LaxPower ratings. These ratings are based on solid math, similar to Jeff Sagarin's rankings. Importantly, they consider margin of victory and where a game was played.
RPI: This is stupid person math. I include these rankings only because the NCAA is full of stupid people and they still use this stupid person math as a major piece of their stupid tournament selection criteria.
EFFICIENCY: This is just a ranking of a team's efficiency margin, as adjusted for strength of schedule. These are similar to Ken Pomeroy's rankings, but slightly different. (Pomeroy uses win expectation as the basis of his ratings. We each, however, use the same foundation (efficiency).)
AVG.: Average of the "math" rankings.
COACHES/MEDIA: These are the human polls, as voted on by humans. These humans have different jobs, though: One set judges humans while clad in university-issued apparel; the other set of humans judges others simply to sell ink and paper. These polls are from March 21, 2011.
AVG.: This is the average the Earth-human polls.
DIFF.: The difference between the "math" polls and the human polls. A negative value means that "math" is rating a team higher than the things that are carbon-based; the inverse means that the things made out of 75% water are rating a team higher than the things not made out of any water.
AVG.: Average of the math and human polls. This is how the table is ordered.
The media believes that Duke and Maryland are better than the Big Red; the coaches think that the Devils and North Carolina are stronger than the boys from Ithaca. I'll listen to an argument about Duke being better than Cornell, but it's straight trash if you think either of those other ACC schools could beat the Big Red right now.
Cornell has the most efficient offense in the country. Their defense is right around the top-15. Since their two-goal loss to Virginia, the Big Red have knocked off Yale, Stony Brook, Dartmouth, and Pennsylvania. Stop punishing Cornell for losing to Virginia and Army and sliding back in the polls. The Big Red are playing like -- and have played like -- a top-five team.
The large ranking difference still remains for the Tar Heels. Why? Carolina's defense is suspect and the math tools are showing that and making an appropriate slotting. The media are a little more in-line what the computers are seeing, which is good. The coaches? I'm not sure how you can make an argument that Carolina is the fifth-best team in the land right now with a defense that is the bottom-third or thereabout nationally.
I think the humans are right here. Without Shamel Bratton the Cavaliers just aren't as potent.