This article was copied from the Times-Picayune Sports Desk Log.
LSU ranked No. 5 in first Harris Poll
Sunday, September 25, 2005
By Ted Lewis

The first Harris Interactive College Football Poll was released Sunday, and it doesn’t look much different from the other rankings.

Like the USA Today coaches poll, which remains in the BCS formula, and the Associated Press rankings, which withdrew from the BCS this year, Southern California is the overwhelming choice as the No. 1 team.

The Trojans received 110 of 113 first-place votes in the Harris Poll, 60 of 62 in the coaches’ poll and 57 of 65 in the AP.

Texas was No. 2 in all three.

But there were variations after that. Most notably LSU came in fourth in the coaches’ and AP polls and fifth in the Harris.

The Tigers, whose game against Tennessee was delayed until Monday because of Hurricane Rita, were third in the coaches and AP polls last week. But this week voters dropped them behind Virginia Tech in the coaches’ and AP polls and both the Hokies and Florida in the Harris.

Otherwise, there was only one difference in the teams in the Top 10. Michigan State is No. 10 in the Harris Poll and No. 12 in the coaches’ poll. And Tennessee is No. 9 in the coaches’ ranking and No. 12 in the Harris.

Only one of the 114 panelists in the Harris poll didn’t vote – and that was because he was displaced by Hurricane Rita.

“We felt it went well,” said BCS spokesman Bob Burda. “We didn’t expect the Harris poll to be much different than the others because people tend to use them as resources.

“You certainly don’t see anything in our poll that’s out of line.”

That’s not quite true.

Winless Idaho received five points from one voter.

“I guess we’ve got an Idaho fan out there somewhere,” Burda said. “We’ll have to look into it.”

The first release of the BCS standings, which also include six computer rankings, will be made following the games of Oct. 22.

Lewis vote: Ted Lewis is a voter on the Harris Interactive poll. Here is his ballot for this week: 1. Southern California; 2. Texas; 3. Virginia Tech; 4. Florida; 5. LSU; 6. Ohio State; 7. Michigan State; 8. Georgia; 9. Tennessee; 10. Notre Dame; 11. Florida State; 12. Miami; 13. Alabama; 14. Minnesota; 15. Arizona State; 16. Wisconsin; 17. UCLA; 18. Purdue; 19. Iowa State; 20. California; 21. Texas Tech; 22. Michigan; 23. West Virginia; 24. Louisville; 25. UTEP