Sunday, November 02, 2008

College Football Weekend: Top 10 & BCS Projections

After taking a “few too many weeks” off, this writer is now in the last week of coaching middle school football (sadly, a record-breaking 6-0 season may be followed up with an 0-6 unmitigated disaster) and decided to return to college football speak.

Specifically, that of the BCS.
And to think…we might not need to drop the C this year.
Yeah, sure.

Now remember…
Any Division I-A team is eligible for at-large consideration. The BCS has never changed its automatic qualifiers -- the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the final standings; the champions of the Big East, Big Ten, Southeastern, Pac-10, Big 12 and Atlantic Coast Conferences; Notre Dame if it finishes in the top eight; and a non-BCS team that finishes in the top 12, or in the top 16 if they're ahead of a BCS champion.

Remember as well…
No more than two teams from any conference, no questions asked. (Sorry Big XII fans)
No plus-one game either. However, with the addition of the “BCS Title Game”…we at least have 10 teams and not 8 invited to the party.

With that being said, we know the BCS gets released sometime late this afternoon/early evening on FOX.

I don’t particularly feel like “guessing” what that outcome will be. Instead, here’s the PHSports Top Ten, followed by our BCS Bowl Projections. Don’t worry; they’re based on real-life standings and not our Top Ten. You can breathe now.

PHSports Top Ten Rankings:
1) (9-0) Alabama Crimson Tide
2) (9-0) Penn State Nittany Lions
3) (9-0) Texas Tech Red Raiders
4) (7-1) Florida Gators
5) (8-1) Texas Longhorns
6) (8-1) Oklahoma Sooners
7) (7-1) USC Trojans
8) (8-1) Oklahoma State Cowboys
9) (9-0) Utah Utes
10) (8-0) Boise State Broncos

On the Cusp: TCU, Ohio State, Missouri, Ball State, Georgia, & UNC

BCS Bowl Projected Conference Champions: (as of today)
…get ready for a laugh…

ACC -- Maryland
Big East -- West Virginia
Big Ten -- Penn State
Big 12 -- Texas Tech
Pac-10 -- USC
SEC -- Alabama

Top At-Large Candidates:

Utah (highest non-BCS automatic qualifier)
Boise State (second highest non-BCS automatic qualifier)
TCU (third highest non-BCS automatic qualifier)
Ohio State (top two-loss team beloved by the computers)

Shocking, right?

Of course, it’s borderline crazy to predict Maryland (3-1 in the ACC) in the ACC. However, the truth is that conference is only getting one team into the BCS. Ditto for the Big (L)East. As for the SEC, Georgia & LSU seem outsiders now – outside of an SEC Title Game upset – with Bama and the Gators on a collision course. You also have to remember the “two per conference” rules with the stacked Big 12. Texas Tech gets two ridiculous tests in a row after beating Texas in Lubbock (Ok. State & @Oklahoma) AND the rest of the conference still has several key showdowns. Meanwhile, Pac-10 supremacy is on the line with Cal vs. USC next weekend.

As for the non-BCS schools…

It’s not too unlikely that Boise State goes undefeated and returns to the BCS. Utah has a much tougher road, although they do host both TCU and BYU in the next month. The Utah/TCU matchup almost assures only one of them can get in; however, it’s not unlikely that BYU sneaks back into consideration with a strong stretch.

I can easily foresee a realistic scenario in which Boise State, BYU, and TCU are in the BCS top 12. Especially if a few favorites hold key and the “middle of the pack” can’t keep up.
Whether that’s a good or bad thing, remains to be seen.

How about this “BCS lineup”:

Orange Bowl:
Maryland Terrapins vs. West Virginia Mountaineers

Sugar Bowl:
Texas Longhorns vs. Florida Gators

Fiesta Bowl:
Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. Utah Utes

Rose Bowl:
USC Trojans vs. Ohio State Buckeyes

Note: I’ve always found the Rose Bowl to be a mockery of “pageantry and tradition”. They’ll choke us with the all-too-typical Pac 10/Big 10 rivalry game; instead of USC/Boise State.

BCS National Championship Game:
Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Penn State Nittany Lions

There’s much more on the radar; however, that’s all I’m giving out today.

No comments: