BCS Conference Feeds

Mid-Major Conference Feeds

* News Feeds Undergoing Construction

College Football Nation thanks you for your patience.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Ramifications of Oregon, Oklahoma Losses

If the season were to end today, LSU would face Kansas for the national championship, and most people would have no problem with that. After all, Kansas is the only legitimate undefeated team (sorry Hawaii, but your signature victory this year over 6-4 Fresno State doesn't do it for me) and LSU is the strongest of the once-beaten squads. However, odds are pretty good that Kansas will trip up either against Missouri or in the Big XII title game, leaving the BCS door wide open again.
Let's entertain the possibility of one or both of the top two teams losing a game in the next couple of weeks. Who would replace them in the championship picture?

1) Missouri (10-1): I could live with this. If the Tigers defeat Kansas and win the Big XII title, it would be hard to discredit their accomplishments. Of course, a Missouri-LSU championship game would be awfully confusing ... Tigers, Tigers everywhere!

2) West Virginia (9-1): If the Mountaineers advance to the title game, with a nonconference schedule consisting of Western Michigan, Marshall, Maryland, East Carolina, and Mississippi State, this would only further bolster my argument from earlier this year. How could this team be ranked ahead of Ohio State or Arizona State? Granted, I'm not impressed with these two teams' out-of-conference schedules, either, but at least their in-conference schedule isn't laughable. I don't care how many Big East teams were ranked at some point this year ... this conference isn't very good. The Top 25 has been a revolving door, anyway. The entire Big East conference has been padding its record and reputation by playing mediocre out-of-conference games, and the media is rewarding them for it. It's thinking like that of Jason Whitlock, who said at the beginning of last year that he was ranking West Virginia #1 because they were the most likely to run the table, that makes the current system so defective.
West Virginia needs to be the sacrificial lamb that saves college football. Vote them out, fellas.

3) Ohio State (11-1): The Big Ten isn't that strong this year, but the Buckeyes almost ran the gauntlet, losing narrowly to a very strong Illinois squad. However, it is unlikely West Virginia will lose to Connecticut or Pittsburgh, so the Buckeyes may have to settle for the Rose Bowl.

4) Arizona State (10-1): The Sun Devils have a huge game against Southern California coming up. Victory over the Trojans might give this program a lift in the polls. ASU was leading WVU in the computer rankings going into this week, so if they could narrow the game in the polls, they might leapfrog the Mountaineers.

Of the four major contenders to supplant LSU or Kansas, three of them would qualify as legitimate, but it is the illegitimate contender who has the best shot at New Orleans. Once again, the BCS is starting to smell rotten as we approach December.


GrayDave said...

You are down on WVU and up on Ohio State yet the Buckeyes played Youngstown State, Akron and Kent State. How is that tougher than Maryland and Mississippi State?

Anonymous said...

However, West Virginia did not have to face Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Illinois, Penn State, and Wisconsin. The Big East may have a number of ranked teams, but can we honestly believe that South Florida, Connecticut, Rutgers and Cincinnati are legit? I take the strength of the Big Ten over the Big East any day. Besides which, Ohio State didn't back down from playing its main rival, Michigan; what happened to the annual battle between West Virginia and Virginia Tech. If the Mountaineers are going to dodge their rivals out of fear of losses, they don't belong in the title game.

GrayDave said...

I believe WVU lost the Tech game when they left for the ACC. If you look at the Big East you see South Florida won in Auburn, U Conn lost by 1 point in Virginia, and Cincinnati beat Oregon State. Also, WVU's one loss came on the road while Ohio State lost at home. Ohio State beat a bad Michigan team and also had games against Northwestern and Minnesota. I would love to see regular season games between top teams in different conferences but it doesn't look like that is going to happen, so you have to look at other things like last year's bowl games where the Big East went 5-0. WVU doesn't deserve the championship game over Missouri or Kansas but I think they do belong above Ohio State.

Gerry said...

The Big East's 5-0 bowl record last season is as much a product of their weak bowl tie-ins as anything else. The Big East will continue to be looked upon as somewhere between the level of a mid-major conference and one of the big 5 until their teams stop playing out-of-conference schedules that even make Ohio State blush.