BCS Rankings 2012: Who's Too High, Too Low, Just Right in Week 9 Standings?
The early parts of the season are in the past, meaning it's time to pay close attention to the BCS rankings.
Last week's release had a few surprises but was pretty standard for the most part, but this week's release had a few more head-scratchers. Clearly, some rankings don't take into account the difficulty of a team's schedule or the quality of each win.
So, without further adieu, let's see where the computers screwed up this week.
No. 25 Wisconsin
The Badgers don't have a single quality win on their schedule, and have struggled mightily against weaker opponents this season. Their wins have come against opponents like Minnesota, Northern Iowa and Illinois.
Call me old fashioned, but I like my top-25 teams to have beaten at least one good opponent by Week 9. Wisconsin has been extremely unimpressive all year and I find it hard to believe that no other team in the nation is worthy of a spot in the top 25.
No. 24 Ohio
Ohio's success has been one of the most pleasant surprises of the season and it's hard not too root for them. The Bobcats are 7-0 for the first time in a while and they have definitely earned their spot in the top 25.
Their schedule has been extremely weak this season, but they did beat Penn State to open the season. Because I'm so unimpressed with Texas, I wouldn't mind moving them up.
No. 23 Texas
Texas has had a rough couple of weeks and the reality of their schedule is beginning to set in. It played a tough game against WVU, who has also been struggling and got dominated by Oklahoma.
Texas has been scoring a lot of points but its defense has been getting gashed. You can just tell that they're not as good as their preseason ranking predicted.
Considering its lack of quality wins and its two losses, I would slide Texas back to 24 and move Ohio up.
No. 22 Michigan
It's hard to believe that Michigan was once considered a national powerhouse. Now the Wolverines sit at No. 22 with two losses and no chance at a national title.
They unexpectedly fell to the Fighting Irish earlier in the season, but we have now learned that ND is for real and Michigan got demolished by Alabama in Week 1.
Michigan still may win the Big Ten and make its way to the Rose Bowl, but right now it's correctly placed at 22 for the week.
21. Boise State
Since its disheartening loss to Michigan State to start the season, Boise State has been handling its business each week and has reinserted itself into the top 25.
The Broncos had to deal with replacing one of the most successful QBs in college football history in Kellen Moore and a first round draft pick in RB Doug Martin. So far they've done a solid job.
I think they have a very favorable schedule, but I like them more than Michigan so they're exactly where they should be this week.
No. 20 Texas A&M
Texas A&M is easily one of the scrappiest teams in the nation and any team that lines up across from them should know it's in a fight. The Aggies have been forced to play both Florida and LSU already and barely lost both games.
A&M was in it until the end against two of the best teams in the nation and it also has a solid win over Louisiana Tech to add to its track record. With this in mind, I would put A&M at No. 19 over WVU.
No. 19 West Virginia
Following an offensive eruption against Baylor, people all over the nation were buzzing about West Virginia and its high-powered offense. Since then, it hasn't been pretty.
The Mountaineers have dropped their past two games in hideous fashion and have officially exited themselves from any discussion of a national championship or BCS bowl.
Their defense is just too much of a liability at this point. Even if their offense does pick it up, they might not be able to outgun some of the teams remaining on their schedule.
Considering how bad their last two losses have been, I would put them a spot or two back.
No. 18 Clemson
Clemson had its fair share of struggles this season but recently have been putting up a ton of points on opponents. In their past three games the Tigers have scored a combined 130 points, and it's looked fairly easy for them.
Their biggest shot to land in the top 10 was when they played FSU earlier in the year. Now they are just playing to stay relevant and possibly win their conference.
With the exception of big games against NC State and South Carolina, the Tigers should be able to handle their schedule and may even sneak into the top 10 by the time the season ends if they play their cards right.
No. 17 Stanford
I don't think there are very many teams in the nation that would like to see Stanford on their schedule.
Despite falling to Notre Dame and Washington, they have beaten USC and just stomped a decent Cal team. Even their two losses were tough, hard-fought games that could have gone either way.
At first I thought they were ranked a little too high, but after looking at the teams around them and keeping in mind that Stanford beat USC, the Cardinal are right where they should be in this week's polls.
No. 16 Louisville
Like Rutgers, Louisville is another Big East team that looks solid, but hasn't really been tested yet. Their best win might be against Pittsburgh and we all know that's not very impressive.
Charlie Strong has done a great job in Louisville, but I feel like it's hard to put them at 16 when they really haven't played anybody.
If they continue to win games, especially against Cincinnati late in the year, they will continue to climb in the polls.
No. 15 Rutgers
Who would have thought that Rutgers would be ranked 13th in the nation in its first year without Greg Schiano? Nonetheless, the Scarlet Knights are undefeated and could be this year's surprise BCS team.
Their schedule is ridiculously weak and really doesn't ever become hard, but they do have a big showdown against Cincinnati that they could use to scale the rankings.
As of now, they really should be a spot or two back in the polls considering how favorable their schedule has been.
No. 14 Texas Tech
Texas Tech has made a great push in the past two weeks with solid wins over West Virginia and TCU. The Red Raiders did slip up against Oklahoma but other than that, they have looked pretty solid all year.
They have a huge game this week against Kansas State and they have to look at it as a way to really prove themselves to the entire nation on a big stage.
Despite only having one big win, I believe they should be ahead of South Carolina in the BCS rankings based on the work both teams have done this season.
No. 13 South Carolina
Like Florida State, South Carolina was in national title discussions just a few weeks ago. Following a huge win over then highly-ranked Georgia, the Gamecocks looked unstoppable but dropped their next two games against LSU and Florida.
Now they might not even make their conference championship game.
Granted, those are two really good teams, but 13 is pretty high for a team with two losses at this point in the season. I would only pull them back a spot or two, but I don't believe they should be up at 13.
No. 12 Florida State
Florida State was on top of the world a couple of weeks ago, but after a shocking loss to NC State, the Seminoles have come back down to earth and are now fighting just to win their conference.
Their only quality wins are over Clemson and Miami, but that's better than South Carolina who's right behind them at 14.
The 'Noles are right where they should be in polls considering they lost to an inferior team in NC Statebut have played pretty solid every other week. With the exception of a monster showdown against Florida, the Seminoles have pretty smooth sailing through their schedule and could prove late in the year that they're still a dangerous team.
No. 11 Mississippi State
I know Mississippi State hasn't played anyone yet, but the Bulldogs are undefeated through Week 9. The teams near them in the top 25 don't deserve to be ahead of them, so I guess they're just right at 11.
We'll find out what the Bulldogs are really made of in a few weeks when they play Alabama, Texas A&M and LSU all in a row. If they can push through this gauntlet of tough games, they might stumble into the national championship, but for now they're just a fun story.
No. 10 Georgia
Following an embarrassing loss to South Carolina and a bye week afterwards, UGA fans were finally given something to cheer about as its team pulled out a close game against Kentucky.
Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, I don't think they're as good as many expected them to be. It's hard to put them over Texas Tech at this point in the season. UGA hasn't recorded a win against a really solid team and they looked pretty shaky last night against a subpar Kentucky team.
They have a chance to rebound and start earning some respect this week when they play their arch-rivals in Florida. For now, I think they're a little too high for the very little they have accomplished so far.
No. 9 USC
Let's be honest—with the exception of Stanford, USC hasn't really played anyone. Even worse, they lost to Stanford. I guess the Trojans' most impressive win would be over Washington, but that doesn't make them worthy of a spot in the top 10.
Their schedule definitely picks up towards the end with games against Oregon and Notre Dame. Until then, USC hasn't shown me enough to deserve a spot at No. 9 in the top 25.
No. 8 Oklahoma
A few weeks ago, I wasn't so sold on Oklahoma. But after their thumping of Texas and their domination over Kansas last night, I believe the Sooners have earned a spot at No. 7.
Landry Jones has performed well thus far and their wins are just more impressive than Oregon State's.
I didn't think I would ever say this, but If Oklahoma can beat teams like Notre Dame and West Virgina towards the back end of its schedule, it could find itself in the national championship game.
No. 7 Oregon State
Oregon State has been great this year and has been real fun to watch but I'm not sold that it's the seventh-best team in the country. The Beavers really don't have a quality win with the exception of maybe Wisconsin, but even that was underwhelming.
Their schedule is just now heating up with games against Washington, Stanford and Oregon. If they get through these teams unscathed, then we'll talk. For now, they aren't real national title contenders in my eyes.
No. 6 LSU
Two weeks ago, it looked like LSU didn't even belong in the top 25. But after solid wins over South Carolina and Texas A&M, the Tigers now belong in the top five.
Their quality wins are against tougher teams than Notre Dame and they just beat two solid opponents in consecutive weeks.
Things were looking bleak in Baton Rouge, but LSU is a scrappy bunch and have reinserted themselves into the national title discussion they exited two weeks ago.
No. 5 Notre Dame
Don't tell Manti Te'o, because he's the last person on earth I'd want to upset, but the Fighting Irish are a tad bit overrated.
Their "quality" wins have come against teams that were overrated to start the season. Until their schedule amps up with teams like Oklahoma and USC, I don't think they have enough solid wins to be ranked so high.
They certainly belong in the top 10, but the top five is a bit of a stretch at this point in the year.
No. 4 Oregon
There hasn't been a single game this year that Oregon didn't look impressive. The Ducks have ran through every team on their schedule and their offense looks virtually unstoppable.
However, I understand why teams like Kansas State and Florida have jumped them in recent weeks. Simply put, both of those teams have more quality wins on their records and Oregon hasn't truly been tested yet.
Fortunately for the Ducks, that showdown against USC is getting closer and closer.
No. 3 Kansas State
Kansas State is another team many didn't see doing this well in 2012, but they sure did look good against West Virginia last night. They have a couple quality wins and have absolutely earned the right to be this highly ranked.
Colin Klein has inserted himself into the Heisman race, and if he continues to play like he did last night, Kansas State won't lose this season.
With the exception of Texas, the Wildcats have already beaten the strongest opponents on their schedule.
No. 2 Florida
I wish I could say I saw this coming, but I definitely didn't. Florida has come out of nowhere and is notching quality win after quality win this season.
The Gators just stomped a solid South Carolina team and have also taken out Texas A&M and LSU.
They have looked great all year and have earned the right to be No. 1 considering who they have beaten thus far.
No. 1 Alabama
Yeah, that's right, I said it.
Alabama is a complete team and has looked great all year, but it hasn't played nearly the amount of quality opponents that Florida has. Their best win so far is probably their demolition of Michigan in Week 1, but the Wolverines aren't nearly as good as we thought at the beginning of the year.
The Tide definitely deserve a chance to prove themselves against the tougher opponents on their schedule, but until now, Florida belongs at No. 1.