It's Monday night. It's been a little under 48 hours since Notre Dame beat Southern Cal to finish the season 12-0 and cement a spot in the national championship game. The sense of "what the bleepity fuck" really hasn't gone away yet. I wrote to a friend today: "(The season) has been more surreal and dreamlike than chest thumping. All season I've been waiting for the other shoe to drop. I was pretty nervous Sat night. Even when we won, it wasn't a triumphant "YES" moment but more of a 'hunh. whoa. wow.' kind of moment."
There'll be time enough for counting when the dealing's done, so let's move on to the poll:
Adios: Louisville (was 19, lost to UConn in OT), Rrrrutgers and my Scott Clark references (was 21, killed by Pitt. Pitt!), Mississippi State (was 25, lost to in-state rival Ole Miss, who came in 5-6).
Hello: Northwestern at 22* and Boise at 25. (We had a tie at #25 last week, meaning there were 26 teams in the poll. This week we're back to 25, so three depart and two join.)
Biggest movers: Very little movement in the Top Ten. Stanford is now 10-2 and moves up three spots to No. 8. Congrats to the tree or the bird or the color or the whatever the hell. Kent State and Northern both move up 5 points in advance of what should be an entertaining MAC championship game Friday night. Texas -5 for being schizophrenic. Little yellow pills are available for the 12 of you who took Texas with your "C" pick. (Kegs of cheap Milwaukee-produced beer are available for the 27 of us who took Wisconsin in that slot.) South Carolina and Oklahoma +2 for dispatching in-state rivals. Florida State and Clemson -3 for losing to in-state rivals. Statistical proof that losing really is worse than winning.
Best week: If you want to gain points this late in the season, you better have some red in your game. "Huskers Du" picked Stanford and Nebraska, who collectively got 6 points. Her other four teams were flat, but no matter. Plus-six takes the best of the week and gives her a bump from 14th to 9th.
Enough jibber-jabber, who's winning?
The top four players all lost points. But "Flying Cougars" had the least bad week, only -1, and retakes the lead with 95 points, one better than "I Hate Caillou" who makes a nice showing at +2. Top kid: "Thomas the Train." Top kitty: Mutchka. Top dog: "Silly Milly."
Gamewide: we collectively dropped a point and a half, down from 55.0 to 53.6. I'm barely below the Mendoza line with 53 points, still not even leading the household. I guess there's always the bowl season.
Standings. Team points.
There are really only a few games left to whet your whistle before bowl season. As mentioned, there's the MAC championship on Friday night, the Pac-12 championship (UCLA vs. Stanford) also on Friday, then the SEC, Big Ten and ACC championships on Friday. Texas vs. K-State should be a decent game but much less meaningful that two weeks ago.
* -- what are you doing to do. They are 9-3 in a crappy Big Ten. The only other Big Ten team even receiving votes is Penn State. The champion of the East division is 7-5 and received zero votes from any of the 60 voters. This is the Big Ten in 2012.