Given its context, the Ball State’ s 31-0 pasting of the Toledo Rockets hardly seemed that important - how big of a deal could beating a 1-4 team be. But after looking at today’s AP poll, you can see why the Cardinals’ win was so important: as the MUNCIE STAR PRESS notes, by staying undefeated, they were able to crack the Top 25 for the first time ever with a No. 25 ranking.
That news should make Ball State’s famous alumni happy, including David Letterman and…um, David Letterman. Actually, that’s not true: there are several other notable Cardinal alums, including Janet from Three’s Company and Jim Davis, creator of Garfield. News of the Cardinals’ cracking the Top 25 probably made him so giddy, that maybe we’ll see Jon Arbuckle talking to himself while wearing a Ball State sweater this week.
While the Cardinals don’t have a signature win, they do have victories over Indiana and Navy in their belts. But don’t hold your breath to see Ball State in a BCS bowl game any time soon: the Sagarin ratings have the Cardinals’ strength of schedule at No. 109, so it would take complete chaos for Ball State to have a chance - the college football equivalent of the money market meltdown.
But enjoy the ride while it lasts, Cardinals fans. And for the rest of us, expect to hear quite a bit about Ball State over the next few weeks: the combined records of their next three opponents is 7-15.
In other poll news: Missouri was able to use its thrashing of Nebraska to move past LSU into the No. 2 spot in the Coaches’ Poll, while Vanderbilt had the biggest gain, moving up to No. 13 after edging Auburn.