Saturday, November 6, 2010

Death Valley Not So Sweet to Alabama

The top of the upcoming BCS standings will appear to be unchanged, but in fact, everything has changed.

Alabama's loss to LSU - coupled with Oklahoma's loss to Texas A&M and Nebraska's close call against Iowa State - means it's highly unlikely that a one-loss team will get to the BCS title game this year. The Bayou Tigers have the best shot, but they're going to need help.

The team that's closest to an undefeated season now is TCU. After throttling previously unbeaten Utah by 40 points, the Horned Frogs only have to navigate past a dangerous San Diego State team and hapless New Mexico to finish 12-0. The Frogs' excellent computer rankings, coupled with their expected improvement in the polls, suggest that they will not fall below No. 3 in the BCS standings and that they stand a good chance to play in the BCS title game.

Boise State, on the other hand, saw its BCS title game chances continue to fade. The Broncos will fall further behind TCU in the standings, and at the moment are in danger of not even making it to a BCS bowl game.

The BCS bowl lineup, if the season ends today, should look like this:

BCS championship game: Oregon vs. Auburn
Rose Bowl: TCU vs. Wisconsin
Sugar Bowl: LSU vs. Ohio State
Orange Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. Oklahoma State
Fiesta Bowl: Nebraska vs. Pittsburgh

The projected BCS standings:

1. Oregon, 2. Auburn, 3. TCU, 4. Boise State, 5. LSU, 6. Wisconsin, 7. Nebraska, 8. Stanford, 9. Ohio State, 10. Michigan State, 11. Oklahoma State, 12. Alabama, 13. Oklahoma, 14. Iowa, 15. Missouri.

47 comments:

Underdog Rally said...

I think that LSU will soon answer the question of whether or not a 1-loss AQ team would jump Boise if both win out. LSU's computer rankings are going to be quite a bit higher, so Boise would have to stay ~1.5 full spots ahead in the pols.

Nebraska will be close too, especially if they notch an extra win in the big 12 championship (#wins being so highly valued).

What are the rules on playing a 13th regular season game (i.e. USC)? I wonder if teams like Boise/TCU would benefit, since the computers reward #wins so highly.

Anonymous said...

It is absolutely disgusting that the Big East and ACC get a bid regardless of losses to Sisters of the Blind, Knibb High's junior varsity, etc.

Dale said...

Re 13th game: If you play a game at Hawaii, you can play a 13th regular season game. Naturally, most teams opt for a 7th home game.

Anonymous said...

U do know Missouri lost again tonight right?

CuseFanInSoCal said...

Given the dismal performance of teams that didn't win their conference's automatic BCS bid (or at least tie for it and lose on an obscure tiebreaker ala 2002 Ohio State), I'm fairly certain LSU will not get enough support from the pollsters to jump Boise or TCU unless they win the SEC, and they need a lot of help to do that; Auburn needs two losses. And even with a Big 12 title in hand, I don't think Nebraska will; losing to Texas and overtime against Iowa State just is too much to overcome.

If pollsters are paying attention, Stanford should be the top 1-loss team. Who knows if they are.

Anonymous said...

wait, someone explain how Oklahoma State gets in over Stanford? that doesn't make any sense, Stanford's only loss was to Oregon and they are in a power conference, they should be the other at-large...

Anonymous said...

and what about Ohio State on that Stanford argument too? again makes no sense how Stanford isn't in over both Ohio State and Oklahoma State

Anonymous said...

If Utah loses again (which I predict they will) and Baylor loses again (probable) TCU might end the season with 0 wins against ranked teams.

Odds are pretty decent that Boise State will end the season with at least one ranked team win (VT). Possibly two depending on how far Nevada drops after losing to Boise State.

Something tells me Boise State will have the better computer ranking before the end of the year.

Anonymous said...

if the season ended today, Michigan State would be in the Rose Bowl not Wisconsin because of the head-to-head tie-breaker.

Anonymous said...

wisconsin will be in the rose bowl because wisconsin iowa ohio st and mich st tied at top. mayb just 3 are tied. but since it is a 3 (or 4) way tie.. highest bcs ranking goes. i.e. wisconsin

Bizarro Ocho said...

Lets stop the 1 loss team argument unless TCU or Boise loses. There is a new Flavor of the Week and we hear about how great they are then they lose and then another one takes their place. Try winning your games and you won't need an excuse.

Anonymous said...

TCU and Boise State still makes no sense. Forget about putting them in a major conference like SEC, Big 10 or Big 12 and see how they fare. Change it around and give me your opinion on this. Put Alabama in either one of the MW Conf. or WAC and see how the Tide fares. My guess is they run the tables and put up tremendous numbers, but yet they are in a major conference and already have 2 conference losses - and this from the defending national champs. When will people wake up and realize trying to pick 2 teams to play in a single game is the most idiotic system around. Pick 8 or better yet 16 to play in a playoff

Anonymous said...

A lot of ignorance on display in these comment.

1. Oklahoma St. in this projection is NOT an at-large bid, they are the Big 12 Champion.

2. Stanford will NEVER get an at-large bid because they don't have the fan following to get one.

3. The first tie breaker for Big Ten champion to the Rose Bowl is head-to-head (then overall, followed by BCS ranking). Therefore by having Wisconsin in the Rose he is predicting MSU will lose to PSU in the last game of the season.

T.J. 3 said...

Explaining Oklahoma St gets in over Stanford is easy. Guru is correct in that it would come down to Orange bowl having a choice between Oklahoma St or Stanford.

Recall this year, if the Rose Bowl loses one of it's tie-ins to the National Championship game, it has to take the highest Non-AQ team, which at this point is TCU. So that takes the other Rose Bowl slot from Stanford, which if not for this stipulation, would take Stanford in a heart beat.

The Orange Bowl used to have ties with the old Big Eight. This happened a couple years ago, when the Orange Bowl took Kansas State over several other qualified teams. Add in the travel cost and time for Stanford fans vs travel cost and time for Oklahoma State fans, Orange takes Okie State at this moment. If they lose to Oklahoma or some more bizarre things happen, the point is moot.

T.J. 3 said...

No, Oklahoma State is the at-large. The Fiesta has the tie-in with the Big XII champion (unless they lose the Big XII champs to the title game)

Anonymous said...

The first tie-breaker in the Big Ten is head to head only if there are two teams tied for the top spot. If there is a three-way tie for first, then WI still has the ability to jump MSU for a BCS bowl spot with both teams winning out. While WI did look bad when they played at East Lansing earlier this year, WI also has a win in Iowa City where MSU looked awful just last week.

Anonymous said...

If Wisconsin and Michigan State both win out then MSU goes to the Rose Bowl regardless of BCS ranking. There could be 3 team tie with Wisconsin, MSU, and OSU. OSU is eliminated because Wisconsin beat them and MSU did not play them. Then it comes down to head to head where the nod goes to MSU. If Iowa is there not OSU the same scenario plays out because of Iowa's loss to AZ.

Anonymous said...

he BiTg Championship game winner and loser will not both go to a BCS game, so your Nebraska and OSU prediction will not happen.

Anonymous said...

"If Wisconsin and Michigan State both win out then MSU goes to the Rose Bowl regardless of BCS ranking. There could be 3 team tie with Wisconsin, MSU, and OSU. OSU is eliminated because Wisconsin beat them and MSU did not play them. Then it comes down to head to head where the nod goes to MSU. If Iowa is there not OSU the same scenario plays out because of Iowa's loss to AZ."

This is totally wrong. If 3 teams tie at the top and 2 did not play each other (i.e. MSU and OSU) then the tie breaker goes to highest BCS rank...which will likely be OSU considering they still have Iowa left.

Anonymous said...

Big Ten

Scenario #1
Michigan State wins out
Wisconsin wins out
Ohio State wins out

Michigan State, Wisconsin, and Ohio State are all 7-1 in conference and 11-1 overall.

Team with the highest BCS ranking goes tot he Rose Bowl.

Scenario #2
Michigan State wins out
Wisconsin wins out
Ohio State looses to Iowa

Michigan State and Wisconsin both 7-1 in conference and 11-1 overall. Michigan State goes to the Rose Bowl by virtue of beating Wisconsin head to head.

As a Michigan State fan...GO BADGERS! GO HAWKEYES!

Anonymous said...

I would rather have wiscy in the Rose Bowl, but does Michigan St. not have the edge over them? And as far ad the second team coming out of the big 10, is the bcs obligated to take a 2nd place wisconsin over ohio st. or can they select as they choose? One last thing, I am not seeing any Stanford love at all. Stanford to the Orange over Ok St.

Anonymous said...

"A lot of ignorance on display in these comment.

1. Oklahoma St. in this projection is NOT an at-large bid, they are the Big 12 Champion."

Ok st. as the conference champ to the orange bowl...really bud?

Anonymous said...

" means it's highly unlikely that a one-loss team will get to the BCS title game this year" -- as Yoda might say, there is another: Auburn. If AU loses to bama but wins the SEC they might have a shot.

Anonymous said...

Big Ten tiebreaking rules:

http://www.bigten.org/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/102204aad.html

As I understand it:

- 3 way is resolved by (1) head-head (if 1 of the 3 beat the other 2), then (2) overall record, and _then_ (3) by BCS rankings.

So:

If OSU beats IA
- 3 way tie WI/OSU/MSU
- No way to resolve by head-head
- Still tied for overall record
- BCS rankings determine winner
- Either WI goes or OSU gains enough by beating IA to go to Rose Bowl

If IA beats OSU
- 3 way tie WI/IA/MSU
- No way to resolve by head-head
- Overall record eliminates IA
- Head-head for 2-way eliminates WI
- MSU goes to Rose Bowl

Cheers.......

Anonymous said...

You dudes have way too much time on your hands. Isn't there a website where you all can pretend to be chicks or something?

Anonymous said...

I dont think ohio st. will jump enough even with a win over iowa because iowa almost lost to indiana and yes they would take wiscondin over osu in the sugar if msu goes to the rose bowl considering wisconsin made osu look like shit. Of all the teams in the big ten at the moment wisconsin has been playing the best and are probally the best all around team. The bcs wants the best game possible and sorry but a auborn vs wisconsin would be a much better game then osu vs auborn.
P.s i am not a wisconsin fan i am a psu
Fan and im just stating the facts

Anonymous said...

Instead of arguing about who should be ranked what, we should all be fighting for a playoff system. I know it's not as fun as speculating how many losses TCU or Boise would have if they didn't play in cup cake conferences but the players and fans of every school in the country deserve it.

Alexander said...

Whats really great about the "bcs" is that undeserving teams, like pitt and VT, get an automatic bid to a bcs bowl game. As an Alabama fan im of course bias as to finding a way my team can regain national spotlight. However, a undefeated Boise State team twi years rynning is in danger of playing a mediocre bowl because of this wonderful buy-in the big conferences...

CuseFanInSoCal said...

If TCU plays Oregon in the BCS title game (this happens if Alabama wins the Iron Bowl and TCU and Oregon win out -- which is not at all unlikely), and Stanford is the next-best Pac 10 team and BCS eligible (also likely; Cal, ASU, and/or Oregon State would need a lot of luck to beat Stanford), they would likely go to the Rose Bowl against the Big Ten representative.

Anonymous said...

I understand the issues of Stanford travelling, but I'm curious about how a two-loss Oklahoma makes a BCS bowl game. It's ranking would move up as it runs the table, but would tank downward after a second loss to Nebraska in the Big 12 Title game.

It's basically saying that a two-loss Big 12 team that likely would be outside of the top 10 (if all the other things above break right) would ace out both one of the unbeaten BCS Busters *and* a much higher ranked one-loss Pac 10 Stanford.

Despite the bad optics of that, one can see them blowing off the lower ranked of the Boise/TCU pair. But I don't see them blowing off Top 10 Stanford to reach down to OSU. There are likely back room, unwritten agreements between the Big 6 Conferences and the Bowls that got the Rose Bowl *and* the Pac 10 to accept a BCS Buster into the Rose Bowl while also protecting the Pac 10 to get the BCS payday if they were clearly higher ranked over non-host at large team.

By "host", I mean what LSU or Arkansas would be in the Sugar Bowl if Auburn goes to the BCS Title Game: the traditional SEC rep in the Sugar Bowl. The Pac 10 and other Big 6 Conferences don't begrudge that.

But a two-loss OSU getting a non-host at large bid over a much higher ranked one-loss Stanford simply because the Rose Bowl had to give up their host spot to a BCS Bust... I just don't think the Big 6 and Bowls collectively allow that. Even if it means one of the bowls has to take the weaker traveling Stanford. None of the conferences want to be in that position of getting screwed on a payday they clearly deserve. Toss ups between a close one-loss or close undefeated teams are part of the game, and while they hate it they do roll with the punches there. But OSU instead of Stanford... really hard to see.

Anonymous said...

Thanks to the guy who posted the link re Big Ten tiebreakers. I didn't see how MSU could get to the Rose Bowl, but that cleared it up. It seems strange that an OOC loss could cost Iowa a trip to the Rose Bowl, but there are a lot of strange things about the BCS!

Anonymous said...

Honestly the system we have is not fair to 1 loss BCS teams nor undefeated NON BCS teams. How can you say that TCU deserves to be ahead of LSU? LSU has played 10x the competition that TCU has played this season. Look at the schedule. LSU played Auburn, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi St, North Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virgina. And they still have to play Ole Miss, Arkansas & possibly a sec championship game. For me it is clear that if they win out they should get the nod over TCU. Yes they lost to Auburn but that game was very close. TCU played Utah and Oregon St. Nothing else on their schedule has merit.

Anonymous said...

For those so quick to judge TCU's strength...Oregon has only played 2 teams that have a winning record and only 1 that is currently in the top 25. Real murderer's row right there.

As for complaints about the "system" from fans of AQ schools...this was your system, we never wanted it. Sorry for taking advantage!

The Guru said...

Love that last comment, priceless.

Just want to point out that the Big Ten tiebreaker by a commenter here is correct. The Oklahoma State pick in my scenario is an at-large bid. Nebraska goes to the Fiesta as the Big 12 champion.

PJG said...

Since everyone agrees the BCS is broken and essentially is a "beauty contest." Until we get a proper playoff system like every other sport here's a suggestion: Evaluate teams by how efficient they are. In other words, rank the teams on how well they play (win/loss record, strength of schedule and statistics) against how much resources they have (football budget, ranking of incoming recruiting class, maybe even size of fan base.) Ideally this would be the only ranking qualification in both the human and computer polls, but even if it was just a component of either or both sets of polls, I think it would spur what I believe 'amateur' and college sports should ultimately and even exclusively be about; the pursuit of excellence, not necessarily dominance. Leave that to the pros and their driven pursuit of almighty dollar. Evaluating teams based on efficiency and ultimately excellence would also be much more patriotic and exemplify the values that American was founded and built upon. Doing more with less, creating an environment where everyone is free to succeed and establishing a level playing field where everyone knows and plays by the same rules... What do you think? Nixon went to China, the Berlin Wall came down, why not this?

PJG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Silly thought about the automatic qualifier:


If (and I'm quite aware how big an if it is) Boise State and TCU end up finishing 1-2 in the BCS poll, the automatic qualifier would still have to be awarded if a team qualifies, correct?

I know that only the champions of the five other conferences are eligible for the AQ, so Utah would be out. If Central Florida runs the table and ends up at least 16th in the final poll (and the Big East champion ranked below it), wouldn't the BCS be required to take UCF as the automatic qualifier?

Anonymous said...

if Boise finishs 4th or 3rd in the BCS aren't they automaticly required a BCS bowl?

of does TCU at @3 veto that?

CuseFanInSoCal said...

The only time ways BCS rules would ever require more than one non-AQ team to get a bid are

1) Both #1 and #2 in the final BCS rankings are non-AQ schools. Even if the next-best non-AQ was #3 in the BCS rankings, it still would not get an automatic bid.

OR

2) The two team per conference rule eliminates enough of the BCS top 14 that only non-AQ teams remain after the AQ spots and the first two at-large bids are filled.

Even last year, where both Boise and TCU did get bids, this was not required; Virginia Tech could have been selected instead of Boise by the rules (though because VT was just barely eligible and the Fiesta Bowl was picking, Boise got the spot).

Non-AQ teams do not get an automatic spot for finishing #3 or #4; only AQ conference teams do.

Anonymous said...

Neither Boise or TCU plays squat. They would lose 2 or 3 games in the Big 10.

Anonymous said...

It amazes me how these espn cronies push these small schools. It's all about getting something different in the title game.

You can say it's not their fault that they play a crappie schedule but the bottom line is that it's not Wisconsin or Standford's fault either. A one loss big 10 team is much more deserving than Boise or TCU.

The media has pushed both teams all year long and their ranking is nothing more than the product of media hype. They would be physically dominated in the big 10.

Anonymous said...

Do you really think that the Boise QB would have time to sit back a pluck feathers in the sec? He would be out for the season after week 2.

Anonymous said...

The big 10? Let's be serious. Unless they hose down the field and drive over it with a tractor (lsu v. penn st 2009?), the Big 10 and its group of slow farmboys with last names like Polusky can't compete with anyone who can run under a 5.00 40. MSU/OSU/Wisco all have weaker schedules than TCU, per the Sagarin ratings, and would get wrecked by TCU or any team with actual speed.

I have no problem with an undefeated SEC team above TCU, but the whole thing is a joke until every team gets an equal crack.

Anonymous said...

Sargin ratings don't mean squat. In the Big 10 you have teams like ohio st., wisconsin, iowa, mich. st., mich, penn st. ect... do you actually think that TCU's conference gives them the opportunity to play this type of competition? Outside of Utah (who hasn't beaten anyone) the MWC is a complete joke. Honestly, the WAC is better than the MWC. In fact, TCU & Boise's schedules are so weak you can't even attempt to make an analysis on how good TCU & Boise really are.

Anonymous said...

"he BiTg Championship game winner and loser will not both go to a BCS game, so your Nebraska and OSU prediction will not happen."

if the bcs bowls want them, then yes, they will both play. i still think stanford gets the nod with a heisman candidate Luck.

Anonymous said...

"The bcs wants the best game possible and sorry but a auborn vs wisconsin would be a much better game then osu vs auborn."

i very much disagree with this. cam newton vs. pryor? any network would be salivating over this match-up. let's face it, michigan st. is the team that no one wants out of that trio.

Anonymous said...

Ha! You almost had me thinking you were serious for a minute with your Big 10 "tough competition" talk.

Good one. You should just use Big East next time though so that it's obvious you were being sarcastic. There's a few dingbats out there who actually might believe you (RE: the Big East being tough).

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