Former Clemson coach Tommy Bowden is one of 115 voters in the Harris poll for 2012.
The calendar has turned to October, and the unveiling of the BCS standings is near.
For college football fans, in short, this can be an infuriating time. College football’s national championship is decided by a handful of components -- active coaches, computers and the mix of personalities in the Harris Interactive top 25.
Part of the BCS standings since 2005 when the Associated Press pulled its poll out of the formula, the Harris poll may be the least understood of the postseason components.
Its 115 voters are randomly selected to represent each conference and the independents. Harris Interactive selects 10 voters each from a pool of candidates provided by each conference, bringing the total voters to 110. Candidates submitted by the four independents make up the final five spots in the poll.
But who are the voters? Harris releases a list of names of the panel, but not their relationship to college football, the conference from which they were selected, or the college or conference that nominated to the panel in the first place.
Through research, we have filled in the gaps with a quick description of each voter for 2012.
Here are a few of our observations on the panel.
The mix is as expected among former players, former coaches, current and former media members and college administrators.
Our breakdown is as follows:
39 former players. This includes football players who went on to broadcast careers but not former college football players who went on to become coaches or administrators. One Heisman winner, Army’s Pete Dawkins, is in the panel.
31 former administrators. This includes former commissioners, athletic directors and sports information directors. The most notable is former SEC commissioner Roy Kramer, who is considered to be the father of the BCS.
27 current and former media members for print, broadcast and online outlets.
13 former coaches. This includes Lloyd Carr (Michigan), Tommy Bowden (Clemson and Tulane), Rich Brooks (Kentucky and Oregon) and Jackie Sherrill (Mississippi State, Texas A&M, Pittsburgh and Washington State).
5 “others.” This includes a former head of officials (Tim Mills), a former television executive (Loren Matthews) and a director of college scouting for the Green Bay Packers (John Dorsey).
• Of the 115 voters, 29 have participated in the Harris poll every season since it began in 2005.
• The Harris poll features 15 new voters from last season including former Tulane quarterback Shaun King, former Indiana quarterback Antwaan Randle El, former Wake Forest quarterback Riley Skinner, former Minnesota running back Darrell Thompson and former Cincinnati and Florida State athletic director Bob Goin.
• Another new voter, Bob Condron, spent the last 28 years as the director of media services for the United States Olympic Committee. His last experience in college athletics was sports information staffer at SMU and Texas Tech in the early 1980s.
• Gary Hogeboom was a quarterback at Central Michigan and with the Dallas Cowboys, but he was also a contestant on Survivor: Guatemala in 2005.
Texas player 1966-68
Army player 1956-60
Reporter, The Tulsa World
Florida player 1993-96, CBS Sports Network broadcaster
Reporter, The Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer
Georgia administrator 1986-88, South Carolina athletic director 1988, Virginia coach 1976-81
Former columnist, The Nashville Tennessean
Ball State player 1990-92, Radio host, WGFX in Nashville
Tulane coach 1997-98, Clemson coach 1999-2008
Georgia Tech athletic director 1997-2006, Virginia Tech AD 1988-97, Marshall AD 1985-87
NFL.com analyst, Former Cowboys director of player personnel
Oregon coach 1977-94, Kentucky coach 2003-09
Clemson player 1990-93
Oklahoma player 1970-74
Broadcaster for Rutgers and SNY
Michigan coach 1995-2007
UNLV athletic director 1995-2001, Memphis AD 1982-95
Boise State player 2003-07, radio analyst BSU Sports Radio Network
East Carolina player 1977-80
Former USOC director of media services 1984-2012, former SID staffer at Texas Tech and SMU
Notre Dame athletic director 1981-87, Virginia AD 1971-80, ACC commissioner 1987-97
Former University of Nevada president, former NCAA president
North Carolina coach 1978-87, Kent State coach 1988-90
Miami coach 1971-72, Kentucky coach 1973-81
1958 Heisman winner at Army, former CEO of Primerica Financial Services
Central Michigan coach 1978-93
Minnesota athletic director 1995-2000, Executive Vice President, University of St. Thomas
Green Bay Packers director of college scouting, Connecticut player 1980-83
West Virginia player 1963-65
Toledo player 1969-71
Columnist, SpartanTailgate.com; Former columnist Lansing (Mich.) State Journal
BYU athletic director 1995-99
Reporter, Wyoming Tribune-Eagle
Southern Miss athletic director 1999-2011, former administrator at ULM, Florida and Duke.
Cincinnati athletic director 1997-2005, Florida State athletic director 1990-94
South Alabama athletic director 1984-2009
Oregon State player 1964-66
Utah player 1957-58
Purdue player 1977-80
Columnist, Mobile (Ala.) Press-Register
Central Michigan player 1976-79
NC State administrator 1984-2010
Auburn athletic director 1990-2004
Stanford player 1996-99
Former Baylor player 1990-93; Radio analyst, Baylor
Fresno State athletic director 2001-05
Texas player 1986-89
Reporter, The Oregonian
Don W. Kassing
San Jose State president 2005-08
Kent State athletic director 1994-2010, Cornell athletic director 1983-94
Reporter, The Kansas City Star
Reporter, The Philadelphia Daily News
Tulane player 1995-98
SEC Commissioner, 1990-2002
Radio host, KXDP in Denver
SMU player 1981-84
Colorado State coach 1993-2007
Auburn athletic director 1992-93, Washington athletic director 1975-91
Reporter, Newark (N.J.) Star Ledger
West Virginia player 1965-67
Kansas athletic director 1978-82, South Carolina AD 1982-88, Marshall AD 2002-09
Former ABCSports Senior Vice President
Notre Dame player 1992-95
Duke coach 1971-78, Cincinnati athletic director 1979-84, USC athletic director 1984-93
SMU player 1980-83
Radio reporter and host, Navy Radio Network
Former executive director of the NFL Referees Association, former Big 12 supervisor of officials
Troy player 1990-91
Cal player 1962-64
Texas Tech athletic director 1996-2011
Northern Illinois coach 1996-2007
Louisiana Tech athletic director 1994-2008
Reporter on East Carolina for Bonesville.net
Reporter, Chattanooga (Tenn.) Free-Press
Notre Dame player 1982-85; Radio analyst, Notre Dame
Ohio State player 1972-74
Sports editor, Idaho Statesman
Oregon State player 1966-68
Antwaan Randle El
Indiana player 1998-2001
Wisconsin athletic director 1989-2004
Radio host, AM870 East Lansing, Mich.
Radio host WKNR 850 in Cleveland
Former radio broadcaster, UAB
CEO of GlobalOptions Group, SEC Commissioner 1986-90, Former VP at TBS
*Terry R. Schmidt
Ball State player 1971-73
San Jose State coach 1990-91, Rutgers coach 1996-2000
Pittsburgh coach 1977-81, Texas A&M coach 1982-88, Mississippi State coach 1991-2003
Former columnist, The Tucson (Ariz.) Citizen
Wake Forest player 2006-09
Arizona player 1992-94
Reporter, The Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Daily News Journal
Former Central Michigan sports information director
Reporter, The Washington Times
Florida International coach 2002-06
Georgia Tech player 1982-85
Former TCU administrator and assistant coach
Minnesota player 1986-89
Connecticut athletic director 1969-87
Auburn player 1977-79
Iowa State athletic director 1983-93, Kansas State athletic director 1993-2001
Former Notre Dame sports information director
Jeff Van Note
Kentucky player 1966-68
Stanford player 1988-91
Former SMU administrator
Former Purdue sports information director
Hawaii coach 1988-95
Iowa State coach 1987-94, Washington State coach 1978-86
Radio host, KPEL in Lafayette, La., play-by-play announcer, Louisiana-Lafayette
Former columnist, The Daily
Alabama player 1971, former director for PGA Tour's Shotlink
Louisville player 1976-78
Reporter, Albuquerque (N.M.) Journal
Hawaii athletic director 1992-2002
*Indicates voters since first Harris poll in 2005
Bold indicates new voter in 2012
By David Fox