After 13 weeks of the college football season, the BCS Bowl picture is starting to take shape, but another wacky week could drastically change things in the blink of an eye.
No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Florida State remain the top two teams in the nation, and both are undefeated. If it stays the same, there's no doubt these two squads are on a collision course to battle for the BCS National Championship on Jan. 6, 2014.
As far as the other teams in the top five are concerned, we can get a pretty good idea of where they will land based on their current situations.
Let's break down where Ohio State, Auburn and Missouri all stand going into Week 14 in regard to the BCS Bowl picture.
|2013 BCS Bowl Projections|
|BCS National Championship||Alabama vs. Florida St.|
|Orange Bowl||Clemson vs. Wisconsin|
|Sugar Bowl||Auburn vs. UCF|
|Fiesta Bowl||Oklahoma St. vs. Fresno St.|
|Rose Bowl||Ohio St. vs. Stanford|
No. 3 Ohio St. Buckeyes
If neither the Seminoles nor the Crimson Tide lose a game from here on out, the Buckeyes will be representing the Big Ten in the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
The Buckeyes haven't lost a game the past two seasons and it remains to be seen if anyone can knock them off until it actually happens. Until it does, we have to assume Ohio St. will run the table and easily slip into this bowl game.
Their likely opponent, the No. 8 Stanford Cardinal, will be awaiting the Buckeyes as the Pac-12 representative should they go ahead and win their conference in the coming weeks.
Such a scenario will allow for one of the better matchups in BCS bowl play, with both squads bringing a top-notch defense with the Buckeyes owning the advantage on the offensive end.
No. 4 Auburn Tigers
Auburn will have a tall order in trying to reach the BCS National Championship Game as they must go ahead and beat Alabama in Week 14. Even if they accomplish such a feat, the Tigers won't be guaranteed a spot in the big game and will need losses from both Ohio St. and Florida St., as well as an SEC title.
Don't count on such an occurrence, and if the inevitable happens and Auburn loses to 'Bama this week, the Tigers will be in line to get a crack at the Sugar Bowl with 'Bama going to the national title game.
Auburn's opponent will come from an at-large bid and teams like the No. 19 UCF Knights and No. 16 Fresno State Bulldogs are each a solid bet to get the coveted bid.
Regardless of their opponent, there will be few teams that can be placed in the Sugar Bowl that can hang with this talented Auburn squad.
No. 5 Missouri Tigers
Believe it or not, the Tigers still have an outside shot of making a run at a national title, although they will need some serious help to get there.
The Tigers will need Alabama, Florida St. and Ohio St. all to lose at some point and Missouri will have to run the table themselves and hope Auburn also falters in the process—which could potentially happen in an SEC Championship Game between the two. Also, Missouri may have a crack at 'Bama in the SEC Championship Game.
While it is possible, it's highly unlikely Missouri will be that lucky. Still, Missouri has a chance to get into a BCS bowl game, but will need to finish better than Auburn. Considering Alabama will beat Auburn this week and go on to top Missouri in the SEC Championship Game, it isn't looking good for the Tigers at the moment.
Should things go badly for the Tigers and they finish behind Auburn, Missouri will be forced out of the BCS and into a lesser bowl. No doubt a depressing finish to what has been an incredible season for the Tigers.