Golden Gate Sneaks Up to #3; Crows Still Tops

I’m glad to see someone is paying attention.

Last week’s poll seemed to bring a lot of opinions as to where teams should have been, especially towards the top of the poll.  And that’s good.  That’s the point of this whole thing is to drive a conversation and get people talking.

Another three weeks is under our belt, and while many of us were watching people jump and swim and run and flip and do all sorts of stuff for some chocolate covered gold coins that you wear around your neck, there was a lot of footy going on and it affected the positions.

Chg

Rnk

Club (1st Place Votes)

Points

--

1

Austin Crows (9)

180

--

2

New York Magpies

167

+ 1

3

Golden Gate Roos

157

- 1

4

Los Angeles Dragons

155

--

5

Denver Bulldogs

148

--

6

Dallas Magpies

126

+ 1

7

Calgary Kangaroos

118

- 1

8

Orange County Bombers

114

--

9

Sacramento Suns

99

+ 2

10

Boston Demons

91

--

11

Columbus Jackaroos

90

- 2

12

Houston Lonestars

88

--

13

Quebec Saints

75

+ 1

14

Chicago Swans

63

- 1

15

Minnesota Freeze

60

--

16

Ohio Valley River Rats

46

+ 3

17

Portland Steelheads

25

--

18

Baltimore/Washington Eagles

18

in

19

San Diego Lions

14

- 1

20

Seattle Grizzlies

13

 

To the surprise of no one, Austin remained the unanimous #1 team, with New York number 2.  The Crows have picked up all 54 available first place votes so far, and with six weeks left in season 2016, a “perfect” season in the polls seems very likely.  The Magpies had their best showing of the season on the poll, as seven out of nine pollsters gave them second place votes.

But then a bit of a surprise.  Many people were shocked to see that, despite winning the Western Regional trophy, Golden Gate ended up behind Los Angeles despite the Roos beating the Dragons in Salem.  As is so often in the USAFL poll, shifting teams around them sometimes have peripheral effects, and in this case Golden Gate was the benefactor.  Denver’s win may have played a role in the shift, as well as OC’s continuing decent. 

In any event, the Roos moved up to third while the Dragons slipped to fourth, despite getting two wins each over Orange County and San Diego in the period’s three week span.  There’s been a lot of back and forth between the teams as to who is better; they’ll have a chance to settle that on the field this Saturday when Golden Gate heads down to Los Angeles in what is the undisputed game of the round.

Denver and Dallas remained in 5th and 6th, the ‘Doggies in part thanks to their big win over Minnesota this past weekend while the Magpies remained idle.   Calgary moved up a notch to 7th as Orange County’s freefall continues, dropping for the third straight poll down to number 8.  The Bombers went 1-3 in the SoCal Cup this polling period, picking up the first win of the season, but the three losses were enough for the expert panel to push them down another notch.

Sacramento remained in 9th place, while Boston’s two victories were enough for the panel to jump them up two spots and their first appearance in the top 10.  The Dees leapt over Columbus who stayed in 11th, while the Houston Lonestars did a backwards jump two spots to replace Boston in 12th.  It would be unfair to say that the fall is squarely because of the loss to the steelheads, as Boston, Columbus, and Houston are separated by just three votes, so jostling is inevitable.  Teams 9-12 are the ones expected to challenge for the D-2 crown, and their closeness indicates how open that rush is.

The Quebec Saints stood pat in 13th, but Chicago did not; the Bloods went up a spot into 14th, forcing Minnesota back to 15th.  Ohio Valley’s loss to Columbus at home didn’t hurt them any as they kept in 16th.

The biggest jump of the poll went to Portland as they flew up three spots to 17th.  The win over Houston at home was part of the reason, the scattering of votes at the bottom of the table helped too.  Places 18 through 22 were separated by just three votes.  Baltimore Washington held firm in 18th, San Diego made their second appearance in the poll jumping into 19th, and Seattle won the head-to-head votes tiebreaker over Fort Lauderdale to remain in at #20.  The Squids fell off the Top 20 poll for the first time ever, and were the biggest drop of the week falling back a total of four spots.

WHAT’S ON TAP: NEXT POLL – September 7th

This Saturday is my birthday.  Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaay.  There are also a few very important games on the calendar; the biggest being Golden Gate at Los Angeles.  The Dragons trying to get revenge on the Roos for the result in Salem, while G.G. will want to assert themselves as the best team in California.  San Diego at Orange County will be important too, and will possibly be a season defining game for both teams.

The final slate of games, on August 27th, leading into the Labor Day break is a big one.  Austin and Houston head to Denver for a three-way battle against the Bulldogs.  The Doggies will also want revenge for a regionals loss, as they were just nipped at the end by the Crows in Indy back in June.  Sacramento and Portland will have huge D-2 implications, and Baltimore-Washington travelling to Philly is a possible D-3 preview.

With two months from Nationals now, every game is big.

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