Walker-Sports Top 25 Poll: Conference Championship Week
Now that all the turkey has settled down from the Thanksgiving weekend gorging, and all the dust has settled from the big rivalry weekend, we can now look ahead and see who has won and who will be playing for conference championships next weekend.
In addition to that, the latest installment of “I hate the BCS” has already begun, with the dysfunctional system putting its stamp on the Big 12 title. Thank God that the BCS does not factor into the Walker-Sports College Football Poll.
They broke the curse of the Iron Bowl on Saturday by shutting out Auburn. More importantly that proved to me, that Nick Saban has his team focused.
They were not overlooking lowly Auburn. Now, Alabama can set it sights to Florida and winning the SEC Championship.
Another week and the Oklahoma Sooners top the 60-point mark yet again. This is becoming old habit for the highest scoring offense in the country. Oklahoma is ranked second in this poll because of who they have beaten in the last two weeks, and the fashion they have done it in. Gator fans don’t get upset; your team will have their chance to prove themselves come Saturday at 4 p.m. EST.
The Gators destroyed the Florida State Seminoles in a monsoon on Saturday afternoon, can’t really say that came as a shock. Urban Myers has the most athletic team in the country and they are fast at every facet of the game. Saturday the Florida Gators will travel north to Atlanta and they will have a chance to prove themselves.
They were screwed by the BCS and they won’t get a chance to prove themselves in the Big 12 Championship either. I won’t lie Texas caught the short of the stick this year. Every year someone has to get screwed by the BCS and now it is the Longhorns turn.
The Trojans can thank Oregon State for clearing the way for them to win the Pac-10. Now only a collapse against UCLA will keep the USC out of the Rose Bowl. There is some clamoring that USC should get some consideration to play in the national title game. I hear them barking, but don’t agree, the USC defense is amazing, but this team is just not up to par with the other national powers. Enjoy the matchup with Penn State.
Time to enjoy the Utes second trip to a BCS game. Utah completed the perfect season and is no waiting on their opponent. It will be interesting to see which bowl they actually fall into.
7. Boise State
I am very worried that a two lost Ohio State team will jump Boise and steal a spot in a BCS game. Apparently Boise State is worried about the same thing that is why they destroyed Fresno State on Friday night to help boast their rankings with some style points. Ideally I’d love to see Utah and Boise State go at it in the Fiesta Bowl.
8. Penn State
They have wrapped up a Big 10 Championship, and to be honest a trip to the Rose Bowl would be a great way for Joe Pa to end his storied career. Too bad playing against USC is not exactly the BCS experience Penn State was looking for.
9. Ball State
Amazing season, great team, loads of talent. Too bad the best they can do is the Music City Bowl thanks to their conference. Well I’m sure Jason Whitlock will do enough complaining to keep Ball State in the media for a few extra weeks.
10. Texas Tech
The Red Raiders had a hell of a season, and survived an end of the season scare from Baylor. It looks like they will miss out on a BCS game as it is unlikely that three teams from the Big 12 will make BCS games. Some other concerns for the Red Raiders are the health of Graham Herald’s fingers on his non-throwing hand which will apparently require surgery.
11. Ohio State
A two lost season, and somehow they are still in the hunt to earn a spot in a BCS game. I think this is absolutely ridicules. Simply put, this was not Ohio State’s best season, and if they were to jump an undefeated Boise State team to play in a BCS game it would be a travesty.
12. Cincinnati Bearcats
The Bearcats have had a magical season that has flown completely under the radar because no one watches Big East football. It really is a shame when you consider that one of the few losses on this teams schedule came on the road at Oklahoma.
While Ohio State may be a two lost team that has a chance to make it to a BCS game, TCU may be the best two lost college football team in the country. Both of TCU’s losses came to BCS teams (Oklahoma and Utah). TCU also holds a quality win over BYU. All in all it really was a great season for this team.
For as good of a season TCU had, BYU’s season has to be considered a failure. Yes they will finish in the top 15 at the very least, yes the Cougars will likely play in a New Years Day game. But this was there year that was supposed to be characterized by perfection and a return to national prominence for BYU. At the end of the day, they fell short of that goal, and that is what this year’s BYU team will be remembered for.
Talk about shaking up the national picture. Oregon went into their rivalry game against BCS darling Oregon State, and they laid the smack down on their cross state rivals. While the win won’t get the Ducks into a BCS game, it is something to be proud of and it should lift Oregon into a New Years day bowl game.
16. Georgia Tech
Who said, the option attack does not work when you have to play from behind? Georgia Tech came from 16 points down on Saturday and destroyed Georgia. And while the Yellow Jackets won’t factor into the ACC title hunt, you can bet that Saturday’s victory will go a long way towards securing Paul Johnson's legacy and longevity in Atlanta.
17. Boston College
After a slow start, Boston College just kept plugging along, and now they find themselves in the ACC title game. Not bad at all, for a program that was not even in the hunt just a few weeks ago.
18. Georgia Bulldogs
This season was just disappointing for the Bulldogs. They started the season as the preseason number 1, and never got on track. Now the question lingers, how long will Mark Richt stay in Athens?
19. Oklahoma State
Mike Gundy did all he could this season. He put together a talented football team that should be a solid foundation for years to come. However, playing in the Big 12 South is no easy task. While the Cowboys can run up the score on most teams, they are still a long way from becoming an elite member of the Big 12. Just look at their losses to Texas, Texas Tech and Oklahoma.
Any season that Northwestern can finish the regular season ranked in the top 25 and have the opportunity to play in a bowl game must be considered a success. This season is a success for North Western.
21. Missouri Tigers
Talk about limping down the stretch. In a game that featured some of the worst weather I have ever seen during a football game, the Missouri Tigers laid an egg against rival Kansas. Now they have to gear up and play Oklahoma in the Big 12 Title game. While there is a chance the Tigers can play spoiler, I highly doubt it is likely.
22. Oregon State
So close, and yet the Beavers couldn’t close the deal. A trip to the Rose Bowl was there’s for the taking on Saturday and they got blown out of the water by Oregon. Now Oregon State needs help from UCLA if they want to make it to the Rose Bowl. To be honest, after their performance last weekend, they do not deserve a trip to Pasadena.
23. Michigan State
The Spartans had a good season, but in the end they just are not ready to be one of the elite teams in the Big 10. Now they have to wait and see where Ohio State will end up, before Michigan State can book their travel plans for New Years.
Who would have thought this team would have put together a good season? And they beat WVU at the end of the season yet again. Some how good ole Dave managed to save his job yet again.
Snuck right in the back door and at 8-4 there’s not a whole lot to say about this team. They should be thankful they play in the SEC and their conference carries enough clout to pull them along for the ride.
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