Monday, August 30, 2010

Why Boise State Has a Chance

Does Boise State really have a shot at playing for the BCS national championship? That $18 million question has to be answered in the affirmative: Just look at the preseason BCS standings, as simulated by the Guru.

The Broncos check in at No. 5, behind Alabama, Ohio State, Florida and Texas (in that order). It's significantly different from 2009, when Boise State opened the season No. 15 in the Guru's simulated preseason standings, and was shut out of the title game despite an undefeated regular season.

Granted, another unbeaten run does not guarantee anything for the Broncos, who nevertheless need lots of help. But in the event that Boise State is the only undefeated team, it's nearly assured to gain a spot to play for the title in the University of Phoenix Stadium at the end of the season.

Being highly ranked in the preseason poll makes a difference. While the Guru used the AP poll to simulate the standings, we already know that the Harris poll more or less ape both the media and coaches polls when it's first released in October. Opening the season high in the polls diminishes the chances of a team getting jumped and forces the teams ahead of it to be dumped behind after a loss.

Nearly the same scenario exists for No. 6 TCU, which actually has an easier schedule than Boise State, with just one opponent ranked in the preseason polls (Oregon State). Should the Frogs run the table and no BCS conference team stays undefeated, they could end up playing for the title in Glendale, too.

Yes, it's possible that a Boise State-TCU rematch in the desert is in the cards. And this time, it'd be for all the marbles.

The Guru's Simulated 2010 Preseason BCS Standings
(Click Here for full spreadsheet version, with every team included)

1. Alabama
2. Ohio State
3. Texas
4. Florida
5. Boise State
6. TCU
7. Oklahoma
8. Virginia Tech
9. Oregon
10. Nebraska
11. Iowa
12. Miami (Fla.)
13. Wisconsin
14. Penn State
15. LSU
16. Georgia Tech
17. Pittsburgh
18. Arkansas
19. USC *
20. North Carolina
21. Florida State
22. Georgia
23. Cincinnati
24. Oregon State
25. Utah

* USC is not eligible to be ranked in the coaches poll because of NCAA sanctions


Clark said...

I can see BSU or TCU having a shot at the NC game, provided things go right for them. What I can't imagine is the voters allowing both of them to get there. I expect the voters would panic that there wouldn't be a BCS conference team in there and suddenly a one loss team would make up tons of ground in the final weeks to get into the #2 spot.

Yes, I really do feel that the system is rigged.

Samuel Chi said...

Clark- I don't disagree with that assessment. The main problem with the BCS remains its lack of transparency. The coaches can hide their ballots for most of the season and a lot of the Harris voters simply don't have any credibility.

Andrew said...

TCU will not make it to the title game no matter what. And that is the way it should be. TCU could likely finish the season without one single win against a top 25 team, depending on where Utah and Oregon State both end up. TCU will also likely finish the year having only faced three top 40 teams. While teams like Florida, Pittsburgh, ALabama, Virginia Tech, Miami, Texas, Oklahoma, OSU and Iowa will all face at least 4 ranked teams and up to 8 top 40 teams.
The simple fact is that givin the same easy schedule, 6 of 12 SEC teams would be favored to finish the season undefeated. Being undefeated isn't very impressive when you play such an easy schedule. There are at least 30 teams that would finish 12-0 playing TCU's schedule.
Boise deserves a shot this year because it is the same team that beat TCU last year, beat pac-10 champ oregon last year and if they finish undefeated this year will have beaten virginia tech and oregon state too.
TCU is an overrated joke, who's most impressive win over the past three years is barely beating 8-5 Clemson in a very ugly game.

Pete P said...

Wow, Andrew, show you true feelings! What, a Baylor fan?

TCU currently has two conference foes ranked -- BYU and Utah --- both of which had impressive opening season wins. Oregon State could still win the Pac.

As such, it is likely and possible that TCU will have 3 wins over Top 25 teams at the end of the season.

Texas, after looking at the opening weekend games, may end up with only 2 total opponents in the final BCS Top 25.

And we all know that Boise will have, at best, 2 wins over Top 25 teams, that is if VT and Oregon State can rebound...

As to the rest of you diatribe, it is just silly....