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College football rankings over time Wed, Dec 11, 2013
I was curious how college football rankings change over the course of a single season, so naturally I scraped a bunch of data from ESPN and made a graph: 


Specifically, I looked at the AP Top 25 and only plotted the teams that started the year in the top 10 spots (because looking at a plot of all 25 is a mess).  Here are some observations: 
  1. Half of the top 10 teams at the beginning of the year are members of the SEC.  That sounds about right.
  2. Half of the teams that started in the top 10 finished in the top 10.  Of the remaining five teams, four finished in the top 25.  What happened to you, Florida?
  3. Alabama and Oregon were ranked in the top two spots for 10 out of 16 weeks.  Neither team is playing for the national championship.  That goes to show you consistency doesn't matter.  Winning at the end matters.
  4. The two teams that are playing in the upcoming national championship game and who are ranked numbers one and two aren't included on the plot.  Florida State started the year at number 11, and Auburn didn't make the top 25 until week 8.  That's a little ridiculous.
In conclusion, I quite enjoy college football. #sports


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