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AP Voter Graham Couch Continues To Refuse To Rank Duke Because It Hasn't Played 'A True Road Game' - Reminder Neutral Court Games Matter More

Clemson v Duke

If this headline looks familiar it’s because Graham Couch continues to make the AP poll a laughingstock. Now, it’s not all Graham’s fault, the AP poll has always been a laughingstock because they have people who don’t cover the entire sport on there. It might also be because Kmarko went in on him not too long ago.

So it’s another Monday and this is Couch’s AP poll:

1.  Tennessee
2. Michigan
3. Gonzaga
4. Virginia
5. Michigan State
6. Texas Tech
7. Kansas
8. Auburn
9. Buffalo
10. Nevada
11. Kentucky
12. North Carolina
13. N.C. State
14. Florida State
15. Ohio State
16. Wisconsin
17. Marquette
18. Iowa State
19. Virginia Tech
20. Villanova
21. Oklahoma
22. Nebraska
23. Houston 
24. Mississippi State
25. Seton Hall

Notice a certain team missing? I mean the best team in the country no matter where you look – well, except Graham’s AP vote. Here’s his reasoning:

One more week without Duke: More than two months after the Champions Classic, the Blue Devils finally play their first true road games this week, two of them, even — at Wake Forest on Tuesday and then at Florida State this weekend. Think about that for a second: Two months, no road games. If you’re considering tweeting at me or emailing me about Duke being left off my ballot again, all I ask is that you also attach a copy of your email or letter to coach Mike Krzyzewski that explains your outrage over his scheduling practices. Because if you think what I’m doing out of principle is absurd, it’s not in the same realm as going half the season without stepping foot on another team’s campus. That we allow this in college hoops and don’t blink is ridiculous. 

Now, here’s the thing. Road games don’t matter nearly as much as neutral court games. It’s the dumbest argument in college basketball right now. Punishing teams for not playing road games. Well, let me ask you this. Where does the most important games take place? You know for about 6 weeks or so there are games played … wait for it …. on neutral courts.

Duke has played Texas Tech, Kentucky, Auburn, Gonzaga and San Diego State all on neutral courts. That’s five games away from home for those counting. That’s one less game than it takes to win the NCAA Tournament, which again, takes place on a neutral court. 4 of those 5 teams are NCAA Tournament teams. That means a whole lot more than going to Wake Forest.

And his whole reasoning about look at what happened to the likes of Kentucky, Kansas and Nevada this past weekend. Give me a break. Who cares? You can’t use some hypothetical when making a top-25 about what you think will happen to Duke on the road. Because, again, it doesn’t matter. That’s ultimately what it comes down to. Road games don’t matter. If you lose on the road it’s not the end of the world. You get a bit of a pass. If you win on the road, great. But, neutral court games are the ones that matter to me.

Or, you know, beating the shit out of teams like Kentucky and Auburn and coming back against Texas Tech. Oh, also every analytic projection having Duke as the best team. Or watching the game and realizing yep this is the most talented team in the country.

I hate the AP poll.