Why USC's Loss to Arizona Could Cost Oregon Spot in BCS Championship Game

T.J. McaloonContributorOctober 27, 2012

Oct. 27, 2012; Tucson, AZ, USA; Arizona Wildcats wide receiver Johnny Jackson (30) scores and 8 yard touchdown as USC Trojans safety Jawanza Starling (29) and safety T.J. McDonald (7) look on during the first half at Arizona Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-US PRESSWIRE
Matt Kartozian-US PRESSWIRE

Oregon is a great team that has a legit chance to finish the regular season 12-0. However, because of the conference’s poor record, it may cost them a chance at playing for the BCS championship. 

Point in case, today’s upset at Arizona as the Wildcats shocked the USC Trojans, 39-36. 

The loss to the Trojans not only ended any chance USC had at jumping back into the national title picture, but it hurt the Ducks strength of schedule that has held them back in the first two BCS standings.

When the Ducks opened the BCS standings, they were ranked No. 2 in both the USA Today Coaches and Associated Press polls. However, because of Florida beating two top-10 teams—then No. 4 LSU and No. 7 South Carolina—the Gators were moved ahead of the Ducks. 

Last week, when the second BCS standings were announced, the Ducks were moved down another spot because of Kansas State’s blowout victory on the road over then-No.13 West Virginia. 

Now with a number of undefeated teams losing, like Florida, you’d think it’d open the door for Oregon to make its way into the top three. 

You’d be wrong.

Even with their dominating 70-14 win over Pac-12 punching bag Colorado, the Ducks may get leaped over again if No. 5 Notre Dame beats No. 8 Oklahoma. 

Next week, when USC hosts Oregon, it would have been the Ducks first chance at beating a team that was ranked in the top 10. 

However, because of USC’s loss, Oregon will be lucky to be facing a USC team that’s ranked in the top 20. 

Looking down the road for Oregon, its only chance at playing a team that sits in the top 10 of the BCS standings is the final game against in-state rival Oregon State. 

However, even that game may not be enough to solidify a spot in the top two of the BCS standings. 

One-loss teams like LSU and Georgia each have an upcoming shot against the No. 1 team in the country, Alabama. 

LSU takes on Alabama next week at home, while Georgia will have to win-out to play Alabama, if the Crimson Tide make the SEC championship game. 

Plus, the Tigers and Bulldogs both have the strength of the SEC in their back pockets and a resume that has each team defeating a top-three team. 

However, let's say that Kansas State and Notre Dame continue to stay perfect. Each of these teams can claim a better resume than the Ducks as both have defeated a top-10 team and multiple top-15 teams. 

Now, if Oregon wants to stay in the hunt for a spot in the BCS championship game, Ducks fans have to do the unthinkable—root for Oregon State to keep winning.

However, USC’s loss will send a ripple effect through next week’s game, plus when the season ends in December. The upset at Arizona will keep the Ducks from having multiple wins over top-10 teams on their resume.