College coaching greats offer their own ranking

Updated: September 28, 2005, 9:42 PM ET
Associated Press

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.

Master Coaches Survey
Team Points
1. USC 400
2. Texas 383
3. Va. Tech 369
4. Florida 346
5. Florida State 332
6. Georgia 315
7. Ohio State 314
8. Miami 282
9. Tennessee 267
10. California 250
11. Michigan State 228, 12. Arizona State 199, 13. Notre Dame 181, 14. UCLA 169, 15. LSU 167, 16. Alabama 162, 17. Texas Tech 151, 18. Virginia 116, 19. Wisconsin 98, 20. Boston College 97, 20. Minnesota 97, 22. Purdue 70, 23. Louisville 51, 24. West Virginia 32, 25. Auburn 31

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:

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 game."

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."

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press