Before the season, Grant Teaff, the executive director of the American Football Coaches Association, asked Steve Spurrier not to rank Duke No. 25 in his preseason Coaches Poll, as the South Carolina head coach typically did, and Spurrier obliged.
Now, Duke is back in the Coaches Poll—in the fifth week of the season.
The Blue Devils earned one vote at No. 25 in the latest poll, the first time Duke has been in the “others receiving votes” category after the preseason poll since… well, we have no idea. The last time Duke was legitimately ranked was in 1994, when it went to a bowl.
We’ll work on getting some more information about the vote but, in the meantime, any guesses to the mysterious coach? For the record, the coaches don’t reveal their ballots until the last week of the season. Our guess? Spurrier, of course. Here’s a link to a list of voters, and feel free to drop any guesses in the comments section below.
UPDATE: Just asked Cutcliffe about it on his weekly teleconference. His comments:
“It might be a good friend or it may be Coach Spurrier who did it again, as he did in the past,” Cutcliffe said. “Those things don’t mean a lot, other than if somebody is sincere in the vote, that there is some respect that is being earned. All that is short-lived if you don’t take care of your business. We’re more interested in just becoming a better football team.”
—by Ben Cohen