That’s the poll, commentary from voters is here.
The fact that Florida edged out Georgia has made one member of the UGA contingent, T. Kyle King of DawgSports, predictably grumpy since he was one of the most enthusiastic proponents of the Bulldogs being preseason #1 and the best team in the conference this year.
Well, having UF at the top doesn’t make sense if the polls are your reference point, but keep in mind the SEC media pretty solidly picked the Gators to win the SEC East. Kyle also makes the point that if you look only at the box score, it’s hard to come up with the idea that Florida was more impressive.
As I said in my ballot, it’s extremely difficult to gauge differences in blowouts against overmatched opponents. Coaches have different agendas, they use players in different ways, and ultimately the contests themselves aren’t much more than scrimmages that get to count in the win column.
A few things went in Florida’s favor here. First, the Gators were on live TV in the southeast and the Bulldogs were not. Second, Georgia’s highlight package from this weekend wasn’t as impressive as watching Florida’s parade of long plays. Plus, Florida’s backup defense kept Hawai’i’s backup offense from scoring more than Georgia’s backup defense allowed Georgia Southern to score.
The biggest reason I’d guess is that Florida answered some of its offseason questions. Yes, there are good running backs finally and yes, the secondary can cover someone. They weren’t definitive answers, no; those won’t come until SEC play. However, Georgia didn’t have the chance to answer any of its questions to any degree because it played a I-AA team and any and all success against one immediately gets dismissed.
The fact the Gators got to answer criticism helped its case. Overall, early season polls really aren’t worth worrying about.