Earlier this year it became known that the Rose Bowl (Big Ten champion vs. Pac-10 champion) will begin a new selection process. This process could catapult a new contender to the national spot light.
The new selection process will go as follows: From Jan. 2011 to Jan. 2014, if the Rose Bowl loses an automatic qualifier, such as Ohio State, to the BCS title game, the Rose Bowl would have to substitute with a non-automatic qualifier.
Also, a bowl choosing a replacement team may not select any of the following:
A. A team in the national championship game.
B. The host team of another BCS bowl game.
C. When two bowls lose host teams, the bowl losing the No. 1 team may not select a replacement team from the same conference as the No. 2 team, unless the bowl losing the No. 2 team consents.
What does this mean? To better understand it, let's break it down by predicting the outcome of the 2010 season.
The winner of the SEC receives an automatic bid to a BCS bowl game. If the winner of the SEC is undefeated or has an impressive win/loss record, they will most likely be invited to the BCS title game. So if Alabama runs the table for the second straight year, chances are they're in.
The early candidate to win the Big Ten is Ohio State.
If the Buckeyes win their conference title, they automatically receive an invite to the Rose Bowl; but if they manage to navigate their way to an undefeated season, they will earn a spot in the "Big Dance."
If Ohio State makes it to the national championship game, the Rose Bowl would be forced to pick a non-auto qualifier as the replacement. This would probably be another team with an impressive record, but a team that would otherwise miss out.
Boise State, TCU, and Utah are the teams that come to mind. According to Lisa Horne, this new clause will be effective for all BCS bowl games.
Texas Christian University routed their way to a to 12-1 record last year losing only to Boise State in the Fiesta Bowl. Utah finished the 2008 season 13-0, the nation’s only undefeated team that year. Boise State and Alabama were the only teams to finish with a perfect 14-0 record at season’s end last year.
So imagine a non- BCS team, by default, is awarded the chance to play in a major BCS bowl game; I can see this paving the way for a playoff system, or at least a Plus One, and if these teams start making their presence known in "The Granddaddy of Them All," the BCS will have no choice but to award them a shot at the title.
Let's face it, Utah vs. Alabama, Boise State vs. Oregon, and TCU vs. Utah, are all examples of what could happen when a non- BCS team wants to show their place in the world of NCAA football.
Signing off and Roll Tide,