Should Oregon start to worry?
Another week. Another commanding victory. Another solid No. 2 ranking in the two BCS-relevant polls. Yet, the Ducks might find themselves falling another spot in the BCS standings, slipping behind Kansas State to No. 4.
There is no question that the SEC will again occupy the top two spots in the standings when they're released Sunday at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, after Alabama eased past Tennessee and Florida impressively trounced South Carolina. But Oregon, despite destroying a decent Arizona State team on Thursday, might slip down from its No. 3 slot in last week's BCS standings.
Kansas State will probably gain enough cushion in the computers after blasting West Virginia to edge the Ducks this week. And at least for the short term, Oregon will not be able to do much to untangle from this predicament as it will host Pac-12 patsy Colorado next week.
But what about in the long term? Will a 13-0 Oregon team fail to make it to the BCS championship game?
The possibility certainly exists, and it's not even all that improbable. Kansas State is in the driver's seat to win the Big 12, and its chances of winning it without a loss are improving each week. The Wildcats have already beaten both Oklahoma and West Virginia and play three of their final five games at home. Their two road games are against a team without its top quarterback (TCU) and another without a defense (Baylor). K-State also doesn't have to deal with a conference championship game that serves as an additional roadblock.
And then there's the matter of Notre Dame, whose season basically comes down to two games - next week at Oklahoma and the final regular-season game at USC. Should K-State slip up in the final five games of the season, the Irish will swoop in to grab the poll points to close the gap on Oregon. With its superior computer rankings, Notre Dame also might sneak past the Ducks when other unbeatens stumble.
The projected BCS standings top 15:
1. Alabama, 2. Florida, 3. Kansas State, 4. Oregon, 5. Notre Dame, 6. LSU, 7, Oregon State, 8. Oklahoma, 9. USC, 10. Georgia, 11. Mississippi State, 12. South Carolina, 13. Florida State, 14. Rutgers, 15. Texas Tech.
(FULL ARTICLE @ SB NATION)