Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Battle for No. 4

It was a remarkably uneventful night in the world of BCS. After BYU was beaten by TCU on Thursday, there was not a single upset this weekend among team ranked in the top 10 of the unofficial BCS standings. The most exciting game Saturday was, well, the Red Sox's 4-2 victory over Tampa Bay in Game 6 of the ALCS.

Besides Alabama's 24-20 squeaker over Ole Miss, every top 10 team won by at least two scores. Some won by absurd margins, such as USC's 69-0 demolition of Washington State.

And what a costly blowout for the Trojans.

Despite the complete-game victory that was played mostly by scrubs (such as it is) in the second half, the Guru projects that USC will drop to No. 6 in the first official BCS standings. The top three spots will be occupied by three unbeaten teams - Texas, Alabama and Penn State, in that order - followed by Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

The Guru expects the Trojans to drop to No. 6 because simply playing the woeful Cougars hurt USC's computer rankings. In addition, some voters will drop USC in the polls because either they consider other teams played tougher opponents (particularly Oklahoma, against a ranked Kansas team) or they perceive that the Trojans ran up the score, despite all evidence to the contrary.

The setback may prove temporary, however. The top of the polls are still very fluid with a host of one-loss teams jockeying for position, in addition to the five BCS conference unbeatens. USC does need to be concerned, though, as they might not face another ranked team the rest of the season.

The Guru's projections for the first official BCS standings, with clusters indicated:

1. Texas, 2. Alabama, 3. Penn State, 4. Oklahoma, (5. Oklahoma State, 6. USC, 7. Texas Tech), (8. Utah, 9. Georgia, 10. Florida), 11. Ohio State, 12. Boise State, 13. LSU, 14. South Florida, 15. Texas Christian.

The first BCS official standings will be unveiled Sunday during the NFL postgame show on FOX.


Anonymous said...

Ok, perhaps others have already commented on this, BUT ....

The guys who make up the BCS formula are kind of dumb!!

OK, several years ago, it was pointed out many times how wrong it is was to use the "ordinal" numbers for the Human polls. The human polls certainly don't have "equally spaced" teams, and it certainly possible, (in fact probable), that #4 can be much closer to #3 than to #5, or even that #5 could be closer to #10 than to the #4.

SO, to the BCS's credit, they changed to use the "points" and to normalize the points and use percentage of possible points, which makes lots more sense.

GOOD JOB BCS - you recognized the mistake of using Ordinal numbers and fixed it in a very simple and straightforward manner ...

NOW, we add a few more computers into the mix, and need to average those, so what does the BCS formula do? USES THE ORDINAL NUMBERS AGAIN!! IF the ordinal numbers were a mistake in the human polls, they are a mistake in the computer polls as well. And, I would think that it's not hard to have a normalized points system for the computers either. The answer is right there staring them in the face!!

Why would the "fix" the ordinal problem in the human polls, and then repeat it in the computer polls?

Ute said...

Good point, anonymous. I agree.