BCS Rankings 2013: Who's Too High, Too Low in Week 13 Standings?
- Florida State
- Ohio State
- Oklahoma State
- South Carolina
- Texas A&M
- Michigan State
- Fresno State
- Northern Illinois
- Arizona State
- Ole Miss
Stanford's loss to USC Saturday night set up a shift atop the Week 13 BCS rankings, but even with the new changes, there is injustice as always in the standings.
Several teams are knotted together with similar resumes throughout the rankings, which we'll try to untangle here.
With Oregon, Auburn, Clemson and Missouri all slated with one loss, which of the four should come in the highest?
In the next tier, which of the two-loss teams should be higher than the rest? And finally, are noted "BCS busters" Fresno State and Northern Illinois overrated?
Click on to find out what's what in the Week 13 standings.
Note: All rankings, computer percentages, averages and poll numbers courtesy National Football Foundation, which is linked below.
Week 13 Ranking: 5
Oregon received a big boost in its bid for the Pac-12 title with Stanford's loss to USC.
But somehow, the Ducks also received a bump in the BCS standings. It made sense that UO moved up as the Cardinal fell back with their second loss.
However, Oregon shouldn't still be the top one-loss team. The Ducks really have just one impressive win, over No. 14 UCLA, and their lone loss looks worse, coming against a Stanford team that suffered both of its losses to teams that were unranked at the time.
Meanwhile, Auburn has just one loss to LSU, which is a near push with Oregon's defeat to Stanford. The Tigers have three quality wins against Ole Miss and Texas A&M, both currently ranked in the BCS, and against Georgia, which was ranked last week at the time of AU's win.
The situation is a bit messy, and their resumes are very close. But Auburn, a team that has been playing its best football of late, should be ranked ahead of an Oregon team that has been trending downward since the beginning of the season.
Low: Texas A&M
Week 13 Ranking: 12
Texas A&M should be the top-rated two-loss team.
While on the topic, the Aggies should also be ahead of one-loss Oklahoma State, but more on that later.
A&M has two losses on the season: by seven points to No. 1 Alabama and by four points to No. 6 Auburn. Comparing those losses to any other two-loss team in the country is no contest.
The Aggies have a better resume than both No. 11 South Carolina and No. 9 Stanford. The Gamecocks fell to unranked Tennessee (4-6) and Georgia (6-4), which just fell out of the rankings. The Cardinal lost to unranked Utah (4-6) and a USC (8-3) squad that just entered the rankings.
A&M also boasts the best player in the country, Johnny Manziel. With him in the lineup, the Aggies have a chance against any team in the nation.
Going forward, the Aggies will have two excellent chances to make a jump against LSU and Missouri to close the season.
High: Oklahoma State
Week 13 Rankings: 10
Oklahoma State was a popular pick to win the Big 12 Conference before the season, but that hasn't quite played out.
The Cowboys still have an outstanding shot at the conference title, but they haven't played like a Top 10 team—and their resume shows it.
OSU has one of the worst losses of any team in the BCS, as it fell to a West Virginia team that was just knocked from bowl eligibility last week by Kansas. Yes, Kansas. The Cowboys took care of business against KU, but they haven't beaten a single team currently ranked in the BCS.
Texas and Texas Tech were both ranked when OSU beat them but have since fallen out.
If Oklahoma State is for real, it can prove it this week at home against No. 4 Baylor. But for now, the Cowboys are just a bit overrated at No. 10.
Low: Ole Miss
Week 13 Ranking: 24
Ole Miss beat LSU but is ranked lower than LSU.
That fact is even more strange, considering the Rebels' three losses came to No. 1 Alabama, No. 6 Auburn and No. 12 Texas A&M.
The first two of those losses came on the road, and the third came by just three points at home.
LSU's three defeats are quality ones as well, coming to Alabama, Georgia and Ole Miss. However, those three defeats are definitively worse than the ones by Mississippi.
It's a bit picky, but the Rebels should come in one slot higher than the Tigers—and both should probably be higher than Oklahoma and Louisville at No. 20 and 21.
High: Fresno State and Northern Illinois
Fresno State Week 13 Ranking: 15
Northern Illinois Week 13 Ranking: 16
On the surface, it looks like Fresno State has passed the apparent "eye test" and has gained favor in the polls. The Bulldogs have had close calls, but their offense is as potent as almost any in the nation, which could be the reason for their No. 14 ranking in the Harris Poll and No. 16 ranking in the USA Today coaches poll.
Northern Illinois has gained favor in the computers, pulling an average of 12th between the six computer polls. That puts the Huskies higher than several AQ teams in front of them in the actual BCS, including UCLA, Michigan State, Texas A&M and Oklahoma State.
That high computer ranking for NIU is actually the root of the whole problem. After the Huskies were thrashed by Florida State in the Orange Bowl last year, many human voters don't feel as though they deserve another chance.
However, since this season appears destined to have a non-AQ team earn an automatic bid, the voters are offsetting NIU's high computer ranking by sending Fresno up in the polls. This is apparent because NIU came in nine spots lower than Fresno between the Harris and coaches polls.
With this vicious circle happening, both are ranked higher than they should be—and it is going to cost a more talented, more deserving AQ team a BCS berth.
Low: Wisconsin and Arizona State
Wisconsin Week 13 Ranking: 19
Arizona State Week 13 Ranking: 17
Hurt by the non-AQ fiasco are Wisconsin and Arizona State, which are both right in the BCS mix alongside Fresno State, Northern Illinois and Central Florida.
The two are ironically lumped together after their bizarre tilt in Tempe back in the second week of the season. While that grouping is logical, it isn't logical for the pair to be separated from other one- and two-loss teams like UCLA, Michigan State, Texas A&M and South Carolina.
The Badgers have two quality losses: to ASU and No. 3 Ohio State. That defeat against the Buckeyes came by just one touchdown in Columbus. Meanwhile, all of UW's wins haven't even been close.
The Sun Devils fell on the road against a No. 9 Stanford team that hasn't lost at home, and they lost a neutral-site game to Notre Dame by three points. Meanwhile, ASU boasts one of the nation's best offenses and is at the top of the Pac-12 South standings.
While stacked up against teams like Fresno, NIU and UCF that don't really boast a single quality win, there shouldn't be an argument. UW and ASU should be higher.