Louisville has not earned the No. 10 ranking in the BCS.
Sure, the Cardinals are undefeated. But their schedule has been ridiculously easy. Presently, there isn't a single ranked opponent on it.
The biggest problem against Louisville is the Big East, which you could argue the MAC has outperformed the Big East at this point in the season. Toledo beat previously unbeaten Cincinnati two weeks ago, and Kent State beat previously unbeaten Rutgers last week. Both those teams immediately dropped out of the Top 25.
An undefeated Big East team could make the case that it deserved to be in the Top 10, or even near the top, of the BCS rankings. For that to happen, though, the team would have had to play a tough non-conference schedule.
Louisville's non-conference slate is headlined by a 6-3 North Carolina team, which isn't all that bad. But the other three teams are Missouri State (an FCS team), Southern Miss (0-8) and Florida International (1-8).
Cardinals fans can argue that that up to this point, the team has beaten everybody on their schedule, and that's all they can do. That should be celebrated, but it doesn't earn Louisville serious BCS consideration.
This is the result of factors beyond the Gamecocks' control, namely Marcus Lattimore's gruesome injury. The running back is a big reason South Carolina has gotten its No. 8 ranking.
Unfortunately, they're not going to be able to count on him for the rest of the year. Granted, their defense is very good. But the Gamecocks team as a whole without Lattimore is much weaker, and that should be reflected in the rankings.
A 7-2 record is very respectable, considering South Carolina's schedule, but in their biggest tests of the season (at LSU and at Florida), the Gamecocks fell short. Fans will have to wait until the Clemson game to see what South Carolina is made of without Lattimore.
Before then, though, this is a team that should be on the outside of the Top 10 looking in.
A pattern seems to be emerging, as the lowest teams in the BCS Top 10 have the biggest question marks.
Every year, college football experts laud the prospects of a Seminoles team, only to have them flame out. 2012 was not much different. While Florida State did reach No. 3 after a 5-0 record, the Noles lost, 17-16, to NC State.
Much like Louisville, Florida State is a victim of its own conference and scheduling. Beating Clemson is a nice feather in the cap, but the ACC is not a strong football conference. The Seminoles did themselves no favors, though, when they put both Murray State and Savannah State on the schedule.
A win in Blacksburg next week would help to boost Florida State's credentials. Despite Virginia Tech's struggles this year, a win over the Hokies would be enough to actually warrant the Seminoles' place in the BCS Top 10.
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