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Fun Stat Nerd Tidbit: Texas A&M

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The subject for today: preseason polls and the bandwagon effect.  Texas A&M is clearly what I'm calling "This Year's Nebraska," a team (probably a former power) who had a good year last year and is now expected to re-establish their elite bona fides.  So with that in mind...

Team Last Year's
F/+ Rk (Rec.)
F/+ Rk (Rec.) Preseason
2006 California 41st (8-4) 14th (10-3) 9 14
2007 Wisconsin 26th (12-1) 37th (9-4) 7 21
2009 Virginia Tech 22nd (10-4) 4th (10-3) 7 10
2009 Oklahoma State 20th (9-4) 37th (9-4) 9 NR
2007 Texas 17th (10-3) 21st (10-3) 4 10
2010 Nebraska 16th (10-4) 20th (10-4) 8 20
2006 Florida 16th (9-3) 1st (13-1) 7 1
2008 Clemson 15th (9-4) 29th (7-6) 9 NR
2008 Auburn 14th (9-4) 61st (4-8) 10 NR
2006 Oklahoma 14th (8-4) 13th (11-3) 8 8

One of these ten teams (2006 Florida) was ranked higher at the end of the season than in the preseason polls, three ended up unranked, and only four ended up performing better than they did the year before.  So basically, if you ranked lower than about 14th in F/+ last year and are ranked in the preseason Top Ten, odds are good that you're not living up to expectations.  Keep that in mind when thinking about Florida State (14th last year), Oklahoma State (15th), Nebraska (20th) and Texas A&M (24th).

(Then again, if you're ranked in the preseason top ten, the odds are pretty good that you're not living up to expectations no matter what, I guess. What was I talking about again?)