Monday, November 18, 2013

Will Ohio State's Lead Over Baylor Last?

What does a lead of .0013 in the BCS standings mean?

That's the margin by which Ohio State kept the No. 3 spot in the latest BCS standings over Baylor—defying our projections, but just barely. As the 2013 regular season heads toward its final three weeks, the gaps between top teams will be closely scrutinized as they take on more meaning.

Ohio State's lead would've vanished had just three coaches (out of 62) switched their votes between OSU and Baylor, or six Harris voters (out of 105). In combination, had just four or five people (out of 167) changed their minds then the Bears would've been ahead of the Buckeyes.

Or, had the AP poll been part of the BCS instead of either the Coaches or Harris polls, Baylor would've been comfortably ahead at No. 3. The Bears jumped OSU in the AP poll after a come-from-behind 63-34 win over Texas Tech while the Buckeyes needed late scores to pull away from Illinois, 60-35.

It's just about certain that Baylor will be the No. 3 team in the next BCS standings if it can defeat No. 10 Oklahoma State next Saturday. The Bears will gain enough in the computers (a mere one-place improvement in one computer is all they need) to make up the .0013 deficit, but most likely they'll also pick up a few votes by defeating a Top 10 team.


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