Week 14 Collective Rankings (& Fronting)

The Semi-Detached Pundit Collective (SDPC) returns after a week off; I think we’re all catching up after the Week 14 Cluster-fuck. We’re holding steady at nine power-ranking pundits (PPPs?) and, of course, On Soccer’s Scariness ratings (both Week 13 and 14) show up again introducing an element of predictive science - the impact of form on rankings - to the proceedings. I’ll link, as always, to The DCenters Freezer, despite the risk posed by introducing “anti-rankings” to the rest of the rankings.

Some things that occur to me appear after the numbers - and there are some interesting elements in here.

Here are the sources for this week’s SPDC rankings. I always forget to say this, but I'd encourage people to read the commentary; it tells you a lot about the author:

It’s a Simple Game
Sideline Views (Luis Bueno)
Sideline Views (Andrea Canales)
My Soccer Blog
MLS Underground
SI - Ryan Hunt
Fox Soccer Channel

Now, on to the numbers:

1. Houston Dynamo, 1.0 (last week: 2/3 - 2.4; SR: 1)
2. DC United, 2.8 (6th - 5.1; SR: 4)
3. FC Dallas, 3.3 (5th - 4.9; SR: 3)
4. New England Revolution, 4.0 (1st - 2.3; SR: 7)
5. Red Bull New York, 4.7 (2/3 - 2.4; SR: 10)
6. Kansas City Wizards, 6.6 (4th - 4.4; SR: 9)
7. Columbus Crew, 6.9 (8th - 8.0; SR: 2)
8. Chivas USA, 7.4 (7th - 7.4; SR: 8)
9. Toronto FC, 9.2 (9th - 8.4; SR: 5)
10. Los Angeles Galaxy, 10.0 (13th - 12.3; SR: 6)
11. Colorado Rapids, 10.8 (10th - 10.0; SR: 12)
12. Chicago Fire, 11.8 (11th - 11.7; SR: 13)
13. Real Salt Lake, 13.0 (12th - 12.0; SR: 11)

- Houston is the new, and undisputed, #1 - no shock there.

- Speaking of new and undisputed, Real Salt Lake racked up perfect “13s” for the first time in a while...congratulations, Mr. Kreis. And as ESPN pointed out, Kreis earned a contract extension for this. Um, wow.

- And, somehow, between today’s SPDC rankings and Week 12’s, LA climbed rather abruptly out of the basement...and I think they owe Brian Hall big for this.

- Opinion is split on a couple teams - KC and New England to name a couple - but no team has divided the punditry like Red Bull New York. They rank as high as #2 (Canales) and as low as #8 (me). (I suppose here’s where I should mention the Revs are nearly as baffling: I’ve got them at #2 while Bueno plugs them in at #7...in any case...) I think the scariness figure for Red Bull says a lot about their recent, very bad form; not to start an argument, but I’m wondering if people are clinging to early season memories when rating the New York franchise. Another possibility would be that I’m the outlier.

- By the way, anyone else see the pattern in the above-named teams? Yep. All three are Eastern Conference teams.

- The past two weeks’ big movers? Crap. Take yer pick and note they go both ways. That said, TFC's slip is a little surprising given they've finally showed a spark on the road.

- Except on the bottom: six of the nine pundits in the survey view rank the Rapids, the Fire and RSL, 11, 12, and 13, respectively (and I’m one! Yeah, me!). None of these teams moved a whole lot, which kind of confirms the suckiness.

- Since I started the bastardry above with the comments about New York, below are the weirdest choices made in the other pundits’ work, as judged by me (and, for those named, please feel free to stick up for your choice; it will make us all smarter):

Me, first: The implied homerism of my Revs’ pick; the Red Bull pick.
WVHooligan: Holy shit. He matches the collective exactly. Read him.
SI: Also pretty sane...the asshole.
Fox Soccer: KC at #8 and Columbus at #5, the latter is particularly odd.
Bueno: New England at #7? Red Bull at #3?
Canales: Red Bull at #2? Arguably, DC at #5?
ESPN: Red Bull over Dallas throws me a little...
My Soccer Blog: This man loves TFC (#7) and doesn’t think much of KC (#9).
MLS Underground: Not exact, but matches the collective closely.

I'll start the defenses: I think Red Bull's dive is real - e.g. that there's something wrong. The Revs, on the other hand, will do fine...and I kinda hate them for it. That is all.

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