<
>

How we voted in ESPN.com's Top 25

Neither Adam nor I vote in the Associated Press poll, but we do have a say in ESPN.com's weekly national Power Rankings. Here's what we said this week:

Adam's ballot

1. Alabama

2. Oregon

3. Florida State

4. Georgia

5. LSU

6. West Virginia

7. Kansas State

8. Florida

9. South Carolina

10. Notre Dame

11. Texas

12. Ohio State

13. Oregon State

14. USC

15. Clemson

16. TCU

17. Louisville

18. Stanford

19. Oklahoma

20. Mississippi State

21. Rutgers

22. Nebraska

23. UCLA

24. Northwestern

25. Baylor

Brian's ballot

1. Alabama

2. Oregon

3. Florida State

4. Georgia

5. LSU

6. Notre Dame

7. Kansas State

8. West Virginia

9. South Carolina

10. Florida

11. Texas

12. USC

13. Ohio State

14. TCU

15. Clemson

16. Oklahoma

17. Oregon State

18. Mississippi State

19. Louisville

20. UCLA

21. Nebraska

22. Northwestern

23. Stanford

24. Rutgers

25. Cincinnati

Our top 5s are identical. Adam then goes with West Virginia, while I have Notre Dame. A clear case of offense versus defense there. Our placement of the three Big Ten teams is also pretty close. I moved Nebraska ahead of Northwestern this week because of the Huskers' win over Wisconsin, which I feel is better than anything the 5-0 Wildcats have done yet this year.

Here's where rankings get tricky, though. Adam has Nebraska ahead of UCLA, even though the Bruins beat the Huskers. And UCLA's lone loss was to Oregon State, which beat Wisconsin by the same margin -- three points -- as Nebraska did. And yet Oregon State is ranked No. 13 by Adam. So it's a tough call. The AP voters have Nebraska four spots ahead of UCLA, which must make Bruins fans crazy. But it's hard to do the "this team beat that team, so it can't be ranked behind the team it beat" logic after a certain point. For example, I have Stanford 11 spots behind USC, even though the Cardinal beat the Trojans. Fair? Probably not, and I felt bad doing it. But you have to drop Stanford for losing to Washington, and should USC also fall because of that?

It's not easy. Feel free to criticize, but you'd better be ready to give your own Top 25 before doing so.