BCS Rankings Week 12: 10 Most Likely BCS Championship Games
There are only three more weeks until the final BCS Standings are released on Dec. 5.
Two teams will be invited to play for the BCS Championship in Glendale. There was some uncertainty a few weeks ago, as several No. 1 teams fell before Oregon and Auburn appeared as the clear top two teams in the country.
There are still two other undefeated teams (TCU and Boise State), as well as several one-loss teams, all hopeful for BCS Championship berths.
There will be a fare amount of scoreboard watching in the next few weeks.
Who will be playing for the crystal football? Here are the 10 most likely BCS Championship games after this week's standings.
10. LSU vs. Oregon
LSU has no chance at the SEC Championship, as their loss to Auburn sealed their fate in the SEC West.
However, their only loss was to the Tigers, and they find themselves in a position that Georgia was in back in 2007.
The Bulldogs were arguably the hottest team in football at the end of 2007. But they did not qualify for the SEC title game due to a loss to Tennessee and eventually were penalized after chaos ensued the final weeks of that season.
LSU would need Auburn to lose at Alabama and to South Carolina, as well as the one-loss teams of the Big 12 and Big Ten, to ensure that they would not be poll jumped.
In the early years of the BCS, several non-conference champions have played for the title. Due to the controversy of that scenario, pollsters have taken into their hands to not allow it again.
If all of this happens for LSU, they may not have a choice.
9. Wisconsin vs. Oregon
In a matchup that the Tournament of Roses would love played in Pasadena, the traditional Big Ten vs. Pac-10 game would be played for all the marbles in Glendale as Wisconsin would take on Oregon.
There is no Big Ten championship game. But if Wisconsin wins their remaining two games, they will finish as the highest Big Ten team in the BCS Rankings.
If Ohio State wins out as well, they will be assured of at least a Rose Bowl berth. The Badgers would need a lot of teams to lose some games.
With Oregon surviving their scare against California Saturday, they are more likely than Auburn to finish undefeated and hold on to their No. 1 spot. Therefore, barring a major upset by Arizona or Oregon State, the Ducks will find themselves in Glendale.
8. Oklahoma State vs. Oregon
Oklahoma State's computer ranking is impressive enough that if they were able to beat Oklahoma and get revenge against Nebraska in the Big 12 Championship Game, they could reach the BCS Championship.
Obviously, the Cowboys would need a lot of teams to fall in front of them like most teams on the outside looking in. But the Big 12 Champion would have an edge on the Big Ten's top BCS contender due to the computer average.
They would move up enough in the polls if all those teams lost to counterbalance the gap in the polls with their average.
It would not be a reach to say this would be far from a defensive struggle if these two teams met.
7. Nebraska vs. Oregon
Nebraska gets the edge over Oklahoma State due to the Huskers' 51-41 win heads up against the Cowboys.
Nebraska's only hiccup this season was a stunning home loss to the disappointing Texas Longhorns. Nebraska was a trendy Big 12 pick preseason and a dark horse to reach Glendale.
Although their loss has hurt their chances, Nebraska still has an outside chance of reaching the game.
Nebraska has a very-potent offense to go along with a stout defense. It would be intriguing to see the Blackshirts try to take on the dynamic Oregon offense.
6. TCU vs. Boise State
These darlings of the media and BCS Busters would face off for the third straight year, as they would meet in Glendale once again.
This time for the title of National Championship.
BCS higher-ups would not be opposed to this scenario. It would help their claims that the BCS is a fair system and that every team has a chance to make the championship.
While it would be a very good football game between these two elite teams, most of America (including myself) would want to see just one of these teams make it and take on one of the BCS conference teams for a National Championship.
5. TCU vs. Auburn
The last time two teams from these conferences matched up in a BCS game, the SEC went home with its tail between its legs as Utah dominated Alabama in the 2008 Sugar Bowl.
Auburn and TCU are two of the most balanced teams in college football, and many would definitely tune in to see Heisman front-runner Cam Newton take on the vaunted TCU defense.
No one has been able to slow down Auburn yet. It would be interesting to see if Gary Patterson's Horned Frogs would be up to the task.
4. TCU vs. Oregon
TCU struggled for about two quarters all season, and have paid for it in the polls.
After trailing against San Diego State at home early, then holding off a furious Aztec rally late, the Horned frogs dropped in both polls behind Boise State.
They remain No. 3 in the BCS, but time will tell if they can stay ahead by Dec. 5. If so, there is a great chance they will play Oregon in a trip back to Glendale.
Can the TCU defense, which has been the best in football several times over the course of the season, slow down LaMichael James and the Duck offense? It will likely be up to the voters if given the chance to pick between TCU and Boise State.
3. Boise State vs. Auburn
Boise State has moved ahead of TCU in the pecking order for next team in if Auburn/Oregon loses because of the recent swing in the polls.
Although TCU still maintains a higher computer ranking, Boise State may make up a lot of ground due to their showdown with No. 18 Nevada and the success of Virginia Tech, who has not lost since Week 2 vs. James Madison. If Boise State blows out Nevada, there is no doubt in my mind they will clearly be ahead of TCU.
Kellen Moore and Cam Newton would make for an impressive quarterback duel. Boise State has impressed all season long both offensively and defensively, and a matchup against Auburn may draw more ratings then people think.
SEC against WAC for the National Championship? Maybe.
2. Boise State vs. Oregon
These two teams kicked off the 2009 season with a bang, as Boise State upended the Ducks on the blue turf 19-8.
A punch and 20-some odd games later, these teams could be destined for a rematch in Glendale.
Boise State has found success in Glendale with Fiesta Bowl wins over Oklahoma and TCU. Kellen Moore and the Broncos are a tested bunch, and would no doubt be intimidated by the spread attack of Oregon.
Would these two have a low-scoring affair like their game in 2009, or would the offenses put on a show in Glendale? Both these teams are better than their previous year's squads and would put on an entertaining National Championship regardless.
1. Auburn vs. Oregon
These two teams have been at the top of the polls for nearly a month.
Despite some close calls, they have shown no signs of giving up those spots before Dec. 5.
Auburn has overcome the off-the-field distractions regarding quarterback Cam Newton and have navigated their way through the SEC to come within two wins of Glendale. Oregon has put the drama of the Jeremiah Masoli saga behind them to score their way to No. 1 in the country.
These teams know how to score. At the end of the night, this could result in the highest BCS Championship in history. These teams represent the best conferences in college football this season and have the top two Heisman candidates in Newton and LaMichael James.
It would be a fitting end to the college football season to see these two teams play for it all on Jan. 10 in Glendale.