Jeff Gravley

Not much value in preseason picks, polls and all-conference teams

Posted July 19, 2013
Updated July 22, 2013

Preseason polls and all-conference teams are great to combat the hunger pangs we have for college football. They can also provide motivation for a team or player depending on how dissed they feel. This Sunday the media will cast their votes for a predicted finish in the ACC and it will create a conversation. But I wouldn't put any cash down based on a preseason poll. 

Virginia Tech and Florida State were picked to play for the ACC championship last year. It wound up being the Seminoles opposite Georgia Tech with FSU taking the title. Last year the SEC media thought LSU and Georgia would play in the conference title game. The Tide topped Georgia to claim the title.

I agree with selecting teams in a preseason conference poll. I'm not a big fan of a Top 25 poll until after the 3rd week, but I understand the reason why there is a weekly poll and have even voted in it. But I don't give a hoot about a preseason all-conference team and I especially don't give a rip about a watch list of 35 players up for one of the national awards!

Individuals change from year to year and so do teams.

So just because your team isn't picked to win the league, that doesn't mean it won't happen. Some have a better chance than others and you know that, I don't care how big of a fan you are of your team. 

This is the poll that I will turn in to the ACC on Sunday and boy does it seem odd to be adding Syracuse and Pittsburgh to the mix!


  1. Clemson
  2. Florida State
  3. NC State
  4. Maryland
  5. Wake Forest
  6. Syracuse
  7. Boston College


  1. Miami
  2. Georgia Tech
  3. North Carolina
  4. Virginia Tech
  5. Pittsburgh
  6. Duke
  7. Virginia



This blogpost is closed for comments.

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  • WRAL Sports Jul 22, 4:51 p.m.

    A correction has been made on this story. Thank you for pointing out the error.

  • BattlingBishop 5 Jul 22, 6:38 a.m.

    Preseason polls are way overrated, always have been. If they don't win the NT in a playoff format, it's not legitimate. Just another mythical title.

  • gtr Jul 22, 12:59 a.m.

    I agree about the "value" of preseason polls; they rarely accurately predict the outcome of the... View More

    — Posted by Gunnstigator

    Hockey doesn't really serve as a good example. Home ice really doesn't mean much at all, and as long as you make the playoffs, you have just as much of a shot as anyone.

  • gtr Jul 22, 12:54 a.m.

    All I know is that if NC State finishes 3rd in the Atlantic, then that is one WEAK division.

  • 4tarheels Jul 21, 8:12 p.m.

    Jeff, Did the media actually pick LSU to beat Alabama in the conference Championship? Since... View More

    — Posted by Honesty first

    Poor Mr. Gravely doesn't seem to know his SEC divisions. Embarrassing for a sports anchor. Where is Tom Suitor when you need him?

  • nctaxguy Jul 21, 6:11 p.m.

    Only a media member who spends more time worrying about tearing down the athletic program of the school that is the rival of their alma mater than learning who's in each division in the SEC would make such an asinine statement regarding LSU and Bama playing each other in the SEC Championship game.

    Try again you Wolfpecker hack!

  • Objective Scientist Jul 21, 3:08 p.m.

    It seems in today's society we "can't wait for ANYTHING"!!! The media is so focused on "scooping" one another and "being FIRST to report something that accuracy is often the "sacrificial lamb". Anytime anyone is going to make an "announcement" we always know what is going to be announced before it is formally announced!!! Why even bother with the formal announcement - just excecute a press release and be done with it! What purpose, other than fodder for conversation, debate/arguments, perhaps the occasional "fistfight" even, is served by all the preseason "stuff". Regarding sport - ANY sport - there are so many factors that can change and/or that are truly UNPREDICTABLE - that impact an individual athlete's performance, a teams performance in any one game, in any one season - that it is truly "foolhardy" to even attempt to "predict" anything. All sport fans know that you can look at player matchuups, history of the athlete, the team, the program, the coach, etc. and conclude that a particular team will "most assuredly win over another particular team. However, we also know that sometimes the "underdog" wins!!! That is WHY we play the game!!! I pay NO attention to the preseason "stuff" - I truly ignore it - it is meaningless!!! Those that like to do and get all "worked up" talking about it/debating it... no problem. However - it is NOT for me!!!!

  • 4tarheels Jul 20, 10:15 p.m.

    You wanna get rid of preseason polls? Start firing writers who get them wrong.

  • TarHeels 23 Jul 20, 9:45 p.m.

    Preseason polls mean nothing...just ask Gottfired.

  • Honesty first Jul 20, 6:29 p.m.

    Jeff, Did the media actually pick LSU to beat Alabama in the conference Championship? Since they are in the same division, that is impossible. That is why Alabama played UGA.




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