College coaching greats offer their own ranking

NEW YORK -- The inaugural Master Coaches Survey, an advisory poll made up of 16 former college football coaches including Bo Schembechler and John Robinson, made its debut Wednesday.

The coaches will make their selections for the nation's Top 25 teams every week during the season, and the poll will be available on the Master Coaches Survey Web site: www.mcspoll.com.

In addition to Schembechler and Robinson, other coaches involved are: LaVell Edwards, Hayden Fry, Frank Kush, Dick MacPherson, John Cooper, Bill Mallory, Don Nehlen, John Ralston, George Welsh, Gene Stallings, Pat Dye, Vince Dooley, R.C. Slocum and Don James.

Andy Curtin, an Atlanta-based lawyer and former sports agent, came up with the idea after watching last season's Orange Bowl when
Southern California beat Oklahoma 55-19.

"After the last two BCS championship games, I thought change needed to happen," he said Tuesday. "I tried to determine what was wrong with the current system they're using. From my days as a
player agent, I knew the coaches who had the expertise didn't have
time to vote in an informed manner. The writers didn't have the
expertise and not much more of an opportunity to see multiple games on Saturday.

"So after thinking about the problem, I came up with a
solution. Why not use the most successful retired coaches to
actually watch games, then talk among themselves as a group before they vote on team rankings?"

The coaches relish the opportunity to become involved in the
sport again.

"For me, the thing that made me want to do this is that I could
see myself back in the game," Robinson said. "When we retired, we
all felt remote from college football. This brings me back in the

Added Schembechler: "When I was coaching, I couldn't be completely fair to the teams I didn't see. I would usually pass [voting in the coaches' poll] on to other people. I just didn't have time. Now, not only do we have the time, but we look at 20 game tapes each week. I know more about college teams throughout the country than I ever did when I was coaching."