Bowl Games Predictions 2013: Breaking Down BCS Landscape Entering Week 14

Tyler Brooke@TylerDBrookeSenior Analyst IINovember 24, 2013

TALLAHASSEE, FL - NOVEMBER 23: Kelvin Benjamin #1 and Kenny Shaw #81 of the Florida State Seminoles celebrate Benjamins's touchdown against the Idaho Vandals during the first half at Doak Campbell Stadium on November 23, 2013 in Tallahassee, Florida. (Photo by Jeff Gammons/Getty Images)
Jeff Gammons/Getty Images

With the Week 14 BCS standings officially coming out on Sunday night, the BCS bowl picture has changed quite a bit.

Over the past few seasons, we've seen some incredible upsets in the last few weeks of the season.  This past week was certainly no exception, as the Baylor Bears and Oregon Ducks were both beaten quite easily by conference rivals.

Now, with those losses and a surprising jump in the rankings by one team, the stage for the BCS bowl games looks quite different.  Below is a look at the most recent BCS standings, followed by the most likely scenarios for each BCS bowl game based off of current rankings and what each team will likely do for the rest of the season.

Week 14 BCS Rankings
RankTeamAVG
1Alabama.9881
2Florida State.9697
3Ohio State.9200
4Auburn.8236
5Missouri.8077
6Clemson.7726
7Oklahoma State.7615
8Stanford.6665
9Baylor.6456
10South Carolina.6101
11Michigan State.5780
12Arizona State.5052
13Oregon.4950
14Northern Illinois.4620
15Wisconsin.4448
16Fresno State.4124
17LSU.3737
18Oklahoma.3380
19UCF.3364
20Louisville.2522
21Texas A&M.2243
22UCLA.1921
23USC.1779
24Duke.0885
25Notre Dame.0674
Projections for BCS Bowl Games
Bowl Game
Alabama Crimson TideBCS National ChampionshipFlorida State Seminoles
Ohio State BuckeyesRose BowlStanford Cardinal
Clemson TigersOrange BowlMichigan State Spartans
Auburn TigersSugar BowlUCF Knights
Oklahoma State CowboysFiesta BowlNorthern Illinois Huskies

The BCS National Championship Game is still preparing for a big-time matchup between the Alabama Crimson Tide and Florida State Seminoles.  In order for them to make it to the big game, both teams will have to win out, and it really doesn't matter if the games are ugly.  

With Baylor's loss, the Ohio State Buckeyes are now the only other undefeated team coming out of a top-tier conference.  Assuming that they're able to keep their impressive win streak alive and pull out a victory in the Big Ten Championship, they will be heading to the Rose Bowl to play the Pac-12 champion.

Nov 23, 2013; Columbus, OH, USA;  Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback Braxton Miller (5) breaks a tackle by Indiana Hoosiers cornerback Tim Bennett (24) in the first quarter of the game at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowksi-USA TODAY Sports
Trevor Ruszkowksi-USA TODAY Spor

The Pac-12 Championship Game will likely have the Stanford Cardinal taking on the Arizona State Sun Devils.  With Stanford currently ranked higher, it will most likely be the team that takes the conference title.

A game between Braxton Miller and that Stanford defense would be a very intriguing matchup.  Both sides bring a lot to the table, but this would certainly be Miller's biggest test by far.

If Florida State goes to the national championship, that would leave its spot as the ACC champions up for grabs in the Orange Bowl.  The Clemson Tigers are currently right behind the Seminoles in the standings, which means that they would be the replacements.

As the first at-large bid, we would likely see a Big Ten team, which would either be the Michigan State Spartans or Wisconsin Badgers.  Currently, the Spartans are the top team in the Big Ten Legends Division and have one of the best defenses in the nation, allowing just 12.5 points per game.

However, the Spartans will have to play the Buckeyes in the Big Ten Championship Game, and if they don't play well, it could be the Badgers who take their spot in the Orange Bowl.  Still, I think the Spartans will play well enough to head to the bowl game.

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - NOVEMBER 2:  Nick Marshall #14 of the Auburn Tigers looks downfield for a reliever against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Razorback Stadium on November 2, 2013 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.  The Tigers defeated the Razorbacks 35-17.  (Photo by
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Next up is the Sugar Bowl, which puts the SEC champions against another at-large team.  With Alabama heading to the national championship, another SEC school would go in their place, and that team would be either Missouri or Auburn.

Both of those teams will be playing Alabama before the season is over, which makes it tricky to determine which one will go.  However, since Auburn is ranked higher in the current rankings, I have them going, at least for now.

As the AAC champions, the UCF Knights would earn an automatic bid to a BCS game, giving them a spot in the Sugar Bowl.  They would obviously be big underdogs against Auburn, but we've seen crazier things happen in these games.

Finally, the Fiesta Bowl would feature the Big 12 champion and the last at-large bid.  With their big win over Baylor, the Oklahoma State Cowboys are now on top of the conference. 

The big jump in the rankings was for the Northern Illinois Huskies, not because of how far they moved up, but because they moved ahead of the Fresno State Bulldogs.  This gives them an opportunity to go to the Fiesta Bowl, but if they fall, the Bulldogs will be right there to snatch the bid up.

These are certainly some interesting matchups, and with what we've seen from these teams this season, these games could be very intense.