Jim Tressel won't be happy to read this.
Ohio State has lost the BCS National Championship game the last two seasons. In fact, they are the only team to ever lose the BCS National Championship game. Yes, it’s only been played twice, but Ohio State has only ever lost it. Congrats to the SEC, who have the only two teams to ever win it.
But here we are getting ready for 2008. Should Ohio State be allowed in the title game once again?
Sure, they are allowed by the rules, but will the voters (Coaches and AP and Harris) actually rank them No. 1 or No. 2 and give them the nod for the game? The computers are blind to this process (or at least should be, they are a computer and don’t have this human emotion).
It’s entirely possible that Ohio State ends up No. 1 or No. 2 in the BCS Rankings, where none of the pollsters put them as No. 1 or No. 2 but the computers give them such a high ranking that it’s enough to pull them up, despite the human wishes.
Let’s say that Ohio State is the only undefeated team at the end of the regular season. With a win over expected quality of teams like USC who could finish in the top 10, it would be hard to say no, especially if they are the only undefeated team.
But in a field of one-loss teams, with one or fewer undefeated teams, it would be a selection by the pollsters. Personally, I wouldn’t rank Ohio State as No. 2 in this case: Even if I thought they were the second best team in the country for 2008. They’ve had their chance—and, well, you know the results.
It seems then that the only way Ohio State makes it in to the game is if they’re a clear choice: As one of two undefeated teams (or the only one), or the only one-loss team with fewer than two undefeated teams.
So what are the chances of Ohio State actually being in the game this year? Don’t count on it.
In fact, here’s my bold prediction: Ohio State will not be playing in the 2009 BCS National Championship game. They won’t go undefeated. I see a one-loss season in a field of one-loss teams, and I can’t pick them as No. 1 or No. 2.