Several dates with bowl-projection implications should be circled on college football fans' calendars after the release of the 2013 BCS rankings.
Here are the initial rankings, according to ESPN, and the four most important matchups the rest of the regular season.
|Week 9 BCS Standings|
No. 7 Miami at No. 2 Florida State on Saturday, Nov. 2
Florida State has defeated Miami three straight times, but the bitter in-state rivalry will carry more postseason implications than it has in years this November.
The Seminoles have overwhelmed their opponents so much, winning games by an average margin of 40.9 points, that they’re No. 1 in the computer rankings. The U is back, but it’s far less dominant than Florida State—winning games by an average margin of 25.0 points—and it will need an extraordinary effort to pull off this upset.
No. 3 Oregon at No. 6 Stanford on Thursday, Nov. 7
Oregon hasn’t missed Chip Kelly. It boasts the No. 2 scoring attack in the nation, averaging 57.6 points per game. But while the Ducks have shown offensive dominance, Stanford is ranked No. 3 in the nation in points scored and surrendered.
The coaches think that Oregon is the second-best team in the nation and Stanford eighth, but in the Cardinal’s house, the more balanced (less thought-of) team could realistically shake up the championship picture with a win.
No. 10 Texas Tech at No. 8 Baylor on Saturday, Nov. 16
This game only maintains its championship relevance if Texas Tech and Baylor stay undefeated. No. 15 Oklahoma will play both teams, and No. 19 Oklahoma State will also take on the Red Raiders.
If each team takes care of business, this could go down as one of the most exciting games of the year. Baylor boasts the No. 1 offense in the nation and has scored at least 69 points against all but one team. Texas Tech hasn’t shown that type of firepower, but its No. 2 passing attack—averaging 416.4 yards per game—is more than capable of keeping up in a shootout.
No. 1 Alabama at No. 11 Auburn on Saturday, Nov. 30
This showdown’s importance also may vary depending on if the Crimson Tide and Tigers stay perfect from now until the end of next month. Auburn doesn’t face a ranked foe, but Alabama has a date with No. 13 LSU, which defeated Auburn by the score of 35-21 earlier this year.
Of course, the team who’s won the Iron Bowl has won the national championship the past four years, so no one in their right mind would doubt that this matchup will have postseason significance.
David Daniels is a breaking news writer at Bleacher Report and news editor at Wade-O Radio.