Ranking the 5 Most Likely BCS Title Game Matchups and How They Could Happen
Yes, Alabama fell from the ranks of the unbeaten, thanks to a great team effort from Texas A&M and spectacular play by Johnny Manziel.
Even so, they still have a shot at reaching the BCS title game.
That's what this list is about—which BCS title game matchups are most likely.
Oregon, Kansas State and Notre Dame could all finish undefeated, with Georgia or Alabama trailing immediately behind with one loss. Or, chaos could break loose and each of the undefeated teams could lose a game.
Who knows? Alabama proved that nobody is unbeatable.
In ascending order, the following matchups are the most likely to take place for the 2013 BCS title game.
5. Georgia vs. Oregon
Oregon: vs Stanford, at Oregon State, Pac-12 Title game
Georgia: vs. Georgia Southern, vs. Georgia Tech, vs. Alabama(SEC title game)
Barring a far-fetched series of events, such as an Auburn win in the Iron Bowl, Georgia will face Alabama in the SEC title game.
The winner has a real shot at still making the BCS title game, even with a loss.
Notre Dame must still face USC, and even if they win out, could be jumped in the BCS rankings as they have no conference title game and the winner of the SEC title game would get a huge boost in the rankings.
All it would take for the Bulldogs to sneak in would be a slip-up by Kansas State or Notre Dame, and a win over Alabama. It's not exactly guaranteed, but still a very real possibility.
Oregon's path is just as difficult, but they control their own destiny and have the firepower to beat every team they face the rest of the way handily.
4. Alabama vs. Oregon
Alabama: vs. Western Carolina, vs. Auburn, vs. Georgia (SEC title game)
Oregon: vs. Stanford, at Oregon State, Pac-12 title game
Oregon's road to the title game is not easy, but it's certainly doable for a team that repeatedly rolls over opponents with no regard for their dignity.
I fully expect to see them in the BCS title game. As for Alabama, again, all is not lost. In spite of their loss to Texas A&M, they have two easy opponents left before season's end (sorry Auburn fans) and then find themselves facing Georgia in the SEC title game.
If the Tide win out, they might have enough pull with the voters and computers to sneak past an undefeated Notre Dame team. All it would take at that point for them to reach the national championship would be a loss by either K-State or Oregon.
The Ducks are less likely to lose, so this matchup remains a possibility. However, if you wish to survive more than a day in the state of Alabama, I would recommend you not mention the name "Manziel."
3. Oregon vs. Notre Dame
Oregon: vs. Stanford, at Oregon State, Pac-12 Championship
Notre Dame: vs. Wake Forest, at USC
The Ducks face three ranked opponents before the end of the season, so imagining them falling behind another team in the BCS rankings if they win out is difficult.
No team has come close to slowing them down, and in case you haven't surmised this as of yet, I believe them to be the best bet to make the title game at this point in the season.
Notre Dame, a team that will likely be part of the BCS rankings (with a win over USC), would pretty much seal the deal as a top-three team at season's end, and would jump into the top two if Kansas State finds a way to lose.
The Irish have beaten every team that has been placed in front of them, even if they haven't blown them out, and will continue their winning ways for at least two more games.
2. Kansas State vs. Notre Dame
K-State: at Baylor, vs. No.17 Texas
Notre Dame: vs. Wake Forest, at No.18 USC
There are plenty of rumblings among Notre Dame haters that the Irish don't deserve their ranking and will be absolutely stomped on by SC when the teams meet to finish the season.
Stop it. If the Irish finish the season without a loss, that will be more than at least 120 other FBS teams have done this season.
Sure, there have been close games, ugly games and games they should have lost, but still they are undefeated, and will remain that way. So get over the SEC love and recognize that the Irish are undefeated, unlike anybody in that conference.
The matchup with SC will be a tussle, but this defense is loaded with playmakers, and the Trojans offense has proven less explosive than we expected. A win over USC, especially if the Trojans remain in the BCS rankings, would make it very difficult for a one-loss SEC team to jump the Irish in the rankings.
K-State does not face a conference title game, and they will continue to roll through the Big 12 conference schedule to the undefeated record.
As long as they win, they will be in the title game.
1. Oregon vs. Kansas State
Oregon: vs. No. 14 Stanford, at No. 11 Oregon State, Pac-12 Championship Game
K-State: at Baylor, vs. No. 17 Texas
As we learned when Alabama fell to Texas A&M and Wonder Boy Johnny Manziel, anybody can lose.
That said, these two teams are going to be Nos. 1 and 2 in all the polls this week, and while both have tough challenges ahead of them, it's difficult to see them losing at all the rest of the way.
Oregon continues to steamroll every opponent they face, Kenjon Barner is making a push for the Heisman Trophy, and nobody has been able to slow down the Ducks yet this season.
The road to the title game is still littered with ranked teams for the Ducks, with Stanford, Oregon State and then the Pac-12 South division champ waiting to take them on.
It's a difficult road, but Oregon's offenses has yet to be slowed, much less stopped, and barring Johnny Manziel suiting up for one of those teams, the Ducks will win every game for the remainder of the year.
K-State's road is a bit easier.
Baylor can put up points, but has struggled to stop anyone on defense and has lost five games already in the conference.
The Wildcats wrap up the season against Texas, which presents some unique challenges, but the Wildcats are clearly the better team.
With no conference title game in the Big 12, should Collin Klein lead the Wildcats to an undefeated season, they will finish in the top two of the BCS rankings and be assured of a spot in the BCS championship.