Poll talk: Arkansas should be ranked higher than USC

·2 min read

We know that coaches are fond of saying, early in the season, that their team hasn’t accomplished anything. They’re trying to be humble, they’re trying to make sure their players aren’t overconfident and soft. We get it.

Sometimes, though, a coaching staff’s motivational method can actually coincide with accurate analysis.

It’s true in USC’s case: The Trojans really haven’t done anything. No one should be throwing a parade that USC beat Stanford. This was expected. It was supposed to happen. Nothing more.

Stanford is not a high-end win. Not today. A decade ago, yes, but not in 2022.

If rankings are done properly, they will value the caliber of wins on a team’s resume each week. Through two weeks, there is zero doubt that Arkansas has a better resume than USC.

Yet, as Razorbacks Wire has noted, Arkansas is multiple spots behind USC in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll and the Associated Press Poll.

Cincinnati, whom Arkansas beat in Week 1, is a better team than both Rice and Stanford. South Carolina might be good, or it might be bad, but the Gamecocks are definitely better than Rice. Are they better than Stanford? We don’t really know. Nevertheless, Cincinnati clearly elevates Arkansas’ profile over USC through two weeks.

Maybe Cincinnati could be overrated, but you obviously can’t say Rice is better than Cincy. Stanford and South Carolina is close to a toss-up, with probably a slight lean to South Carolina in a hypothetical if the two teams met this upcoming weekend.

If we are evaluating the quality of work each week — which is how rankings should be done — there is zero question Arkansas should be ranked above USC.

Will Arkansas be a better team than USC at the end of November? That’s a different question. Will USC justify a high ranking over the course of the season? That’s a different question.

If we’re talking about right now, and nothing else, Arkansas has to be ranked ahead of USC.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire