UPDATE: Tom Murphy has issued a statement in which he, essentially, apologized for his vote. His statement says, in part: My error was in not having a greater appreciation for the well-trained game officials who spotted the gain and confirmed the call on the field. For that I apologize and confirm that I respect the decision of those officials and the outcome of the game.
The Ohio State Buckeyes outlasted the Michigan Wolverines in double-overtime on Saturday and, despite controversy, that result will live for eternity. However, one voter in the Associated Press college football poll chose to ignore it in this week’s voting.
Tom Murphy of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette was that voter, and the good folks at RedditCFB passed along his insane rationale on Sunday evening.
Murphy certainly is not alone in thinking that Ohio State did not cross the line to gain on J.T. Barrett’s now infamous run, but the voter’s assertion that he “appointed (himself) as the replay official and deemed Michigan the winner” reads like satire. It is at least possible that this was said with tongue firmly planted in cheek, but given that Murphy voted Michigan ahead of Ohio State, there has to be some basis for it in his mind.
Quite honestly, there is an argument to be made in the “best team” sense to vote the Wolverines ahead of the Buckeyes. After all, the two teams played to a virtual draw in Ohio State’s home stadium and, given that folks in Las Vegas generally assign a three-point cushion to the home team, it is at least plausible that Michigan is “better”. Still, this type of explanation for a vote seems abjectly crazy and Murphy has justifiably taken a beating over the internet as a result.
Ohio State won on the field and, because of that, the Buckeyes are in position to likely reach the College Football Playoff field. Just don’t ask Tom Murphy who should be ranked ahead of them.