BCS Standings 2012: Predicting Final Top 25 for the 2012 Season
Since the BCS rankings have been out for a few weeks, everyone in the nation has been obsessing about them more than usual. The reason for the concern this year is the fact that we still have four undefeated teams: Kansas State, Notre Dame, Alabama and Oregon.
As the season continues through its final month of play before the bowls, teams are jockeying for position both in their respective conferences and nationally.
With a few weeks still remaining, here is a look at what you will likely see in the BCS rankings once the regular season is over.
No. 25: Toledo
As quickly as Toledo came into the BCS picture, they were quickly erased from it with their loss to Ball State. Despite the loss, Toledo still has a big game against Northern Illinois remaining.
With a win in that game and their final game of the season, the Rockets may squeak back into the rankings by the end of the year.
No. 24: Rutgers
It may be easy to overlook Rutgers at times, but once you see their defense, you understand how this team is doing as well as it is. At 7-1, the Scarlet Knights still control their own fate in the Big East as they still have a head-to-head game against Louisville remaining.
While the defense will make it tough, the Scarlet Knights will likely lose to the Cardinals and remain around No. 24 in the BCS rankings.
No. 23: Louisiana Tech
Louisiana Tech is currently at 8-1, and their only loss was a shootout with Texas A&M a few weeks ago. Due to the great start, the Bulldogs have risen up the BCS rankings.
Late in the year, the Bulldogs have a huge test as the WAC title goes up for grabs in their game against Utah State. While it appears that all the talent is there for a win, look for the Aggies to pull off the upset.
No. 22: Oregon State
After rising into the Top 10 a couple of weeks ago, Oregon State has fallen on tough times, and with games against Stanford and Oregon, the Beavers are not done falling.
With two more losses likely coming from those games, expect the Beavers to almost fall completely out of the BCS rankings.
No. 21: Stanford
Stanford has one of the toughest schedules down the stretch as they go up against Oregon State, Oregon and then UCLA.
With this kind of schedule remaining, the Cardinal will likely go 1-2 in this stretch, which will cause them to fall down the BCS rankings.
No. 20: Utah State
Utah State may be one of the best mid-major teams in the nation that nobody is talking about. The Aggies are currently 8-2, and they only have one game remaining that is cause for concern—their road date with Louisiana Tech.
Assuming the Aggies can get past that game, they should finish the year at 10-2, win the WAC and have a season that this program can begin to build on.
No. 19: Texas Tech
As we head toward the final stretch, Texas Tech has had its fair share of challenges, but even after two straight losses, the Red Raiders look ready to bounce back.
Currently at 6-3, the Red Raiders have games against Kansas, Oklahoma State and Baylor remaining, all three of which are extremely winnable games.
No. 18: Mississippi State
After a great start to the season, Mississippi State has gotten roughed up by tough competition, and that will continue this week. After losing to Alabama and Texas A&M, the Bulldogs now face LSU in what will likely be their third straight loss.
Once this stretch is over, Mississippi State ends with two winnable games that can get them right back into the BCS top 20.
No. 17: Texas
Texas has done a nice job of flying under the radar. The Longhorns have continued to pick up steam, and they appear to have found answers on both sides of the ball.
Look for the Longhorns to continue to win and rise up the polls until they lose their final game of the season to Kansas State.
No. 16: USC
The interesting part about USC is that they already have three losses, and the way that the season is going, the Trojans could be heading toward a fourth.
While the national title is no longer a possibility, the Trojans can win out and head to the Pac-12 title game, but will fall short in the Pac-12 South versus UCLA.
No. 15: Texas A&M
With the exception of their upcoming game against Alabama, the Aggies have a fairly easy schedule the rest of the way. While they will likely lose on the road to the Tide, they will not be penalized that badly for losing to the No. 1 team in the nation on the road.
After Alabama, Texas A&M will earn two more wins to climb back up into the top 15.
No. 14: UCLA
UCLA has shot up out of nowhere to take control of the Pac-12 South, and if they can find a way to win out, they will be heading back to the Pac-12 title game for the second straight year.
Going forward, the big challenge for the Bruins will be beating USC. With the offensive weapons that UCLA has, look for them to pull out the win and head back to the conference title game.
No. 13: Nebraska
Nebraska has done a nice job of navigating their schedule and remaining out in front in their division. If the Cornhuskers can find a way to win out the rest of the way, they will head to Indianapolis to play in the Big Ten title game.
As the Cornhuskers continue to win, look for their BCS ranking to rise and a Big Ten title to help elevate them into the top 15.
No. 12: Oklahoma
Oklahoma currently sits at 6-2, and the rest of their schedule does not appear as daunting as it did at the start of the year. The rest of the way, the Sooners face Baylor, West Virginia, Oklahoma State and TCU.
All four of these games are ones that the Sooners should win, but expect them to struggle along the way and have a 10-win season be put in jeopardy.
No. 11: South Carolina
Despite losing Marcus Lattimore, the beat went on for South Carolina. The only limiting factor that the Gamecocks will face going down the stretch is the lack of a conference title appearance.
The Gamecocks will do a nice job of climbing the rankings into the final week, but expect a loss to Clemson in the final week of the season to drop them back down.
No. 10: Louisville
Louisville lived the life of the most underappreciated team in the nation. The Cardinals were able to run the table, but the issue that they ran into was the fact that the Big East was the worst BCS conference in the nation, and they were never taken seriously throughout the season.
Despite the ranking, the Cardinals did finish the year with their second straight conference title and a trip to a BCS game.
No. 9: Clemson
Despite how well Clemson was able to finish out the year, their loss head-to-head against Florida State is what eventually kept them out of the ACC title game.
The loss also cost the Tigers in the rankings as Florida State was able to go on and win the conference title and pass them in the BCS rankings.
No. 8: Florida State
Florida State did a nice job bouncing back from their loss to NC State and continued to climb through the rankings. As they head into their final week of play, the Seminoles will struggle again in a loss to Florida.
With the loss, Florida State drops back down to the No. 8 spot and falls short of the preseason expectations.
No. 7: Notre Dame
After a magical season leads them to their final game against USC, the dreams of the Irish will come to an end as Matt Barkley solves the Notre Dame defense.
With the loss, the Irish will fall to No. 7 in the nation and fall short of making the trip to the national championship.
No. 6: Georgia
Georgia had an outstanding season this year as the Bulldogs picked up big win after big win and went to the SEC title game. After winning out to end the season, Georgia went up against Alabama and did not get blown out, but never was a threat during the game.
Losing to the No. 1 team in the nation did not hurt the Bulldogs' ranking as they only fell to the No. 6 spot in the nation.
No. 5: LSU
Due to the fact that LSU never fell far from either of their losses, LSU was able to win out after their loss to Alabama and stay in the Top Five of the BCS rankings.
Last year was an outstanding season for the Tigers, but this year, despite the Top Five ranking, they fell completely short of both goals.
No. 4: Florida
Despite being left out of the SEC title game, Florida sat in the weeds and quietly kept on winning. By winning out through the end of the season, Florida was able to continue to climb and climb and found themselves ending the year as the top one-loss team in the nation.
No. 3: Kansas State
The good news for Kansas State is that they will have had a great season, going undefeated and winning the Big 12 conference. The bad news is that they will be the undefeated team on the outside looking in.
With the Ducks having a strong schedule down the stretch, plus a conference title game, Kansas State will be the team left out of the national title game.
No. 2: Oregon
Despite trailing Kansas State right now, Oregon has the schedule now working in their favor. After picking up wins over Stanford, Oregon State and then a UCLA team that made a run to the Pac-12 title, the Ducks edge ahead of the Wildcats and earn the second spot in the BCS rankings.
No. 1: Alabama
After surviving a huge test against LSU on the road, Alabama will settle down and get back to business. While the game against Texas A&M may be close early, the Tide will hang on for a win this coming week.
From the game against the Aggies and on, the Tide cruise into the SEC title game, and with a win, they secure the No. 1 spot in the BCS rankings.