Opening the mailbag: How could you forget Ricky!

Happy Friday.

To the notes.

Kenny from Florence, Ariz., writes: You must be as blind as the rest of the Pac-10 media leaving Ricky Elmore (who DID lead the Pac-10 in sacks) off your all conference team, right?

Ted Miller: First, making these teams is never easy. There are always reasonable arguments to support guys who got left off.

I picked California's Tyson Alualu and Washington's Daniel Te'o-Nesheim as my two first-team All-Pac-10 ends over Elmore, who led the conference with 10.5 sacks.

Alualu finished third on the Bears with 60 tackles, which was the most among conference defensive linemen. He also had 7.5 sacks, 10 tackles for a loss and two forced fumbles.

Elmore had 43 tackles, which ranked seventh on his team, with11.5 tackles for a loss and one forced fumble.

There seem to be three sets of numbers out there for Te'o-Nesheim. The Huskies official website credits him with 11 sacks and 14 tackles for a loss. The Pac-10 credits him with 9.5 sacks and 12.5 tackles for a loss. The NCAA with 10 sacks and 13 tackles for a loss.


In any event, Te'o-Nesheim also had 37 tackles, which ranked seventh on his team. But this put him over the top with me: Five forced fumbles.

All three have good resumes, but based on the overall numbers -- and the scuttlebutt I pick up during the season -- Alualu and Te'o-Nesheim get the nod.

There's also this: Both of them are seniors. Elmore is a junior.

So we'll see him next year.

Jared from Portland writes: It seems to me that having the BCS rankings use the Coaches poll is a bad Idea. For one, the coaches are biased and benefit themselves when they rank their teams high. For example see Brian Kelly as the only coach to cast a No. 1 vote for Cincinnati. Point two is that while head coaches have a great understanding of how good other teams in their conference are, I don't think they know about the rest of the country. How many ACC games do you think Mike Riley watched this season? Why doesn't the BCS use the AP Poll which is written by guys whose job it is to watch and analyze college football 24-7?

Ted Miller: I'm with 'ya completely.

It's absurd that the sport information director, er, coaches vote is included in the BCS standings.

Back in ancient times -- you know, pre-BCS -- there wasn't a whole bunch of money at stake, so the voting wasn't viewed with as much skepticism.

Now, just imagine a coach sitting there knowing if he votes Team X two or three spots higher -- and demotes Team Y a couple of notches -- it might mean an extra $4.5 million for his conference.

That's why the coaches vote needs to remain transparent.

As for the AP poll, it pulled itself out of the BCS formula after the 2004 season.

Polls in themselves are nothing more than beauty contests that are laden with various sorts of regional biases and inconsistent methodology. Most voters spend a lot of time on their ballots and do their best. But some don't.

It's the system we have and I have little hope of it changing dramatically anytime soon.

So learn to love it.

Chris from Eugene, Ore., writes: How about the job Coach Greg Roman did for Stanford. Toby G is good, but they really did one amazing job running the ball. It always seemed Gerhart would have about 10 plays a game in which he was untouched for 5 yards downfield. Oregon, USC, ND and UW DC's had no answers and at times you wondered if it mattered who was running the ball.

Ted Miller: A good point. Stanford's young offensive line -- only one senior -- was dominating at times this year, and Roman and Tim Drevno deserve a lot of credit for that.

A lot of folks -- media and fans -- were wondering if the O-line would fall off when Chris Dalman left unexpected last year. It didn't.

Aaron from Miami writes: Why is it that voters (for all-conference teams, Heisman Trophy, etc...) are allowed to turn in the ballots before all the games have been played? I ask this because the Ducks only have one first team all-Pac 10 member. I would be curious if that would have been the case if the ballots were sent in after the Civil War. Would Masoli be first team ahead of Canfield, would it have been James ahead of Rogers? Maybe not, but it would have been nice to see. I don't want to take anything away from those two players they had amazing years and are very deserving (even after the Civil War was played), but the Ducks won the conference by two games!!! Also I have a feeling that this trend is going to end up giving the Heisman Trophy to an undeserving Colt McCoy (did you see that last game) because voters sent in their ballots early.

Ted Miller: The "why" is convenience and efficiency.

And let's face it. There are some folks who are going to vote for "their" candidate, no matter what the numbers say. Those are the sorts who got their ballots in early.

As for my take: I think all awards and honors should not be voted on before the final game. It's an award for the season, and the season is 12 games long. Waiting an extra day or two for results shouldn't be a big deal.

By the way, I think Gerhart should win the Heisman, but I'd stop well short of saying Colt McCoy is "undeserving."

Tom from Palo Alto writes: Thought you'd enjoy some number-crunching I've done on recruiting across the country -- it really validates the tough job Washington, Wazzou, Oregon, and Oregon State have.

Ted Miller: For the recruiting obsessed, Tom's considerable work will be very interesting.