The BCS standings get more important with each passing week. With just one month remaining in the college football season, there is no question that the BCS bowl scene is as clear as ever as long as the nation's top teams avoid upsets moving forward.
|BCS Rankings Week 12|
|2||Florida State (9-0)||.962|
|3||Ohio State (9-0)||.893|
|10||South Carolina (7-2)||.558|
|11||Texas A&M (8-2)||.547|
|12||Oklahoma State (8-1)||.467|
|14||Fresno State (9-0)||.432|
|15||Northern Illinois (9-0)||.351|
|16||Michigan State (8-1)||.342|
|19||Arizona State (7-2)||.283|
|23||Miami (FL) (7-2)||.147|
No. 1 Alabama had a huge challenge on its hands in Week 11, hosting SEC rival LSU in one of the season's biggest games. The Tigers and quarterback Zach Mettenberger couldn't get the job done, however, as the Crimson Tide were able to continue their winning ways with a 38-17 victory.
While Bama continues to prove itself as the best team in the country, it can certainly be argued that No. 2 Florida State deserves some love atop the rankings as well.
Florida State took down Wake Forest—much to the surprise of nobody—but its resume heading into the game was already impressive. The Seminoles' dominant victory over Clemson a few weeks ago went a long way toward establishing them as title contenders, and they are most definitely in the driver's seat when it comes to earning a bid in the National Championship Game after Oregon's misstep.
The Ducks and Seminoles had been locked in a nip-and-tuck battle for the No. 2 spot over the past few weeks, but Oregon was unable to get the job done against Stanford on Thursday night. The Cardinal shut down quarterback Marcus Mariota and Oregon's high-powered offense to upset their Pac-12 rival. Stanford dashed Oregon's national title hopes late last season with a 17-14 win in overtime, and it was able to do so again this year by virtue of a 26-20 victory.
Although most agree that Alabama and Florida State are the class of college football right now, there are plenty of intriguing teams outside the top two as well.
No. 3 Ohio State continues to hang around after an idle week, and despite the fact that the Buckeyes have romped their past couple opponents and haven't lost since Jan. 2, 2012, they almost certainly need one of the teams in front of them to lose in order to play for all the marbles.
It's also tough to ignore No. 5 Baylor, especially after its huge win over Oklahoma on Thursday night. Heading into the season, the Bears weren't as highly touted as the teams currently ahead of them in the BCS rankings, but they have been dominant thanks to the No. 1 passing offense in the nation.
Baylor has quite a mountain to climb in order to get into national title contention, but there would likely be a lot more talk about the Bears in a different year. In fact, they probably would have played Notre Dame for the national title last season had they found a way to go undefeated.
In addition to the undefeateds, there are a number of one-loss teams attempting to separate themselves as well. Clemson, Missouri, Auburn, Oklahoma State, Michigan State and Louisville are all having spectacular seasons, but they are afterthoughts in many ways due to the dominance that is currently occurring at the top.
As is always the case, there is particular interest in the potential BCS busters. No. 14 Fresno State has really established itself as the premier team in that regard behind star quarterback Derek Carr. The Bulldogs have had several close calls along the way, but they dominated Wyoming 48-10 on Saturday and have moved up in the rankings significantly over the past few weeks.
No. 15 Northern Illinois is also worth watching out of the MAC. The Huskies made a BCS bowl last year, and they are on track to perhaps do it again this year by virtue of an undefeated record. The remainder of Northern Illinois' regular-season schedule is fairly easy, so dual-threat quarterback Jordan Lynch should have a field day. But a MAC title game is looming, potentially against a Buffalo team that gave Ohio State all it could handle early in the season.
Whatever the case, there are storylines abound throughout the BCS rankings with just a few weeks remaining in the season. It may not be the ideal system, and there are plenty of people excited about the institution of a playoff next year, but there is no question that the BCS provides plenty of intriguing discussions.
Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!