There was yet another shift near the top of the BCS rankings after one more Top Five team suffered a damaging loss in Week 12.
A week after Stanford surprised many with a gritty win over Oregon, the Cardinal dropped their second game of the season, this time at the hands of USC. This caused a shift throughout the Week 13 BCS rankings.
Here is a look at the full standings.
|2||Florida State (10-0)||.9661|
|3||Ohio State (10-0)||.8869|
|10||Oklahoma State (9-1)||.5890|
|11||South Carolina (8-2)||.5883|
|12||Texas A&M (8-2)||.5394|
|13||Michigan State (9-1)||.4646|
|15||Fresno State (9-0)||.4134|
|16||Northern Illinois (10-0)||.3729|
|17||Arizona State (8-2)||.3414|
|18||Central Florida (8-1)||.3033|
|23||Southern California (8-3)||.1070|
The Trojans have had an eventful year, with a poor start leading to the firing of head coach Lane Kiffin. However, Ed Orgeron took over the job and finally has the team playing to its ability.
At the end of a tough defensive battle against Stanford, kicker Andre Heidari knocked in a 47-yard field goal with 19 seconds left to all but seal the 20-17 win.
This was not only the biggest victory of the week in college football, but it was also a significant moment for Orgeron, who said the following, according to the school's website:
It was a tremendous effort by the organization and the coaching staff. For some reason on Monday was a belief that we were going to prepare as well as we could and find a way to win the game. I'm awfully proud of our men. This is something we've wanted for the past Trojans and coaches that fought hard. This is for the Trojan Family.
By earning a signature win, he might have done enough to secure the head-coaching job permanently. The Trojans are now 8-3 (5-2 Pac-12) and are riding a four-game winning streak.
Alabama's biggest threat right now is __________.
Still, the other half of the story is Stanford's disappointment. The squad now falls to 8-2 and No. 9 in the BCS, which puts them out of contention for a national championship.
While the Cardinal are the only top team to lose in Week 12, a few others struggled to victory. Surprisingly, one of those was No. 1 Alabama, which squeezed by with a 20-7 win over Mississippi State.
Running back T.J. Yeldon rushed for 160 yards in the win, but four team turnovers limited the offense and prevented a blowout.
Of course, the Crimson Tide had an easy time compared to rival Auburn. The Tigers blew a 20-point lead in the fourth quarter against Georgia to fall behind by one point in the final minutes. Fortunately, an amazing heave from Nick Marshall to Ricardo Louis went for 73 yards for the game-winning touchdown.
However, the rest of the high-profile teams had relatively easy times with their Week 12 opponents.
Jameis Winston and Florida State remain at No. 2 thanks to a 59-3 victory over Syracuse. No. 3 Ohio State won big as well, beating Illinois 60-35 behind 246 rushing yards and five total touchdowns by Carlos Hyde.
Baylor also remained unbeaten with a 63-34 win over the fading Texas Tech Red Raiders, moving the Bears up to No. 4 in the standings.
These teams continue to be the top contenders for a spot in the BCS Championship Game, but there are still a few one-loss teams that refuse to drop out of the conversation. This includes Oregon, Clemson, Oklahoma State and Michigan State, all of which earned victories this weekend.
Missouri fits in this category as well but the Tigers were idle this week.
The biggest thing this group can take away from Week 12 is that schools at the top are capable of losing any time out. Even those further down the rankings right now can still move up in the coming weeks with plenty of football still to be played.
Until then, fans and players will continue to look at the BCS every week and hope for every single point on their way to the top of the standings.
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