BCS Standings 2011: Five Team Rankings That Just Don't Make Sense

Georgia ByrdContributor IOctober 17, 2011

South Carolina is battling losses of two key players
South Carolina is battling losses of two key playersStreeter Lecka/Getty Images

Overheard in a fictitious bar on a Sunday night in College Town, U.S.A.

“These BCS computers just don’t make any sense.”

College football debates and cheap shots are no doubt flying over the BCS rankings like birds going south for the winter. 

Here are some conversation starters about the new list of BCS rankings to carry to the office water cooler this week.

• The South Carolina Gamecocks (No. 14): It hardly makes sense for a team who just lost their star running back to a season-ending injury (Marcus Lattimore) and their first-string quarterback to team dismissal to hang in at this respectable BCS ranking.  Perhaps we need to tell the computer a thing or two.  

The Gamecocks—traditionally a team that fizzles as the season comes to an end—barely escaped a loss in Starkville this past weekend.  Against Mississippi State—a team that has not won an SEC game this year—the Gamecocks were sloppy and inconsistent. The future could take a turn for the worse this weekend as they travel to Knoxville to meet a hungry Volunteer team looking for a must-win. These Gamecocks may have a lot to crow about now, but they’ve still got quite a bit of football to play, including a season-ending date with their arch-rivals, the Clemson Tigers (No. 7).

• The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (No. 22): It just doesn’t make sense that a one-loss team could make its BCS debut near the bottom of the list.  Losing by a mere three points to a 4-2 Virginia team, Paul Johnson’s Yellow Jackets were definitely struggling this past weekend, however, this team is second overall in the nation’s rushing with 347.9 total yards! 

Give them some credit for outscoring their opponents by big numbers, including a win over Kansas 66-24 and North Carolina 35-28.  Look for the Jackets to dominate on Saturday in Miami and get ready for an ACC showdown with No. 7 Clemson on October 29 at home.

The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets are a one-loss team
The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets are a one-loss teamScott Cunningham/Getty Images

• The Arkansas Razorbacks (No. 9): How did the Arkansas Razorbacks slip into the BCS top 10?  Against Alabama, they struggled and lost 38-14, at times playing like a Kent State or a North Texas.  Although they came back and defeated Texas A&M in a close one (42-38), the Hogs beat an under-skilled Auburn 38-14. 

At first glance, the Razorbacks’ strength of schedule isn’t impressive and this Saturday, they meet a weak Ole Miss at home.  Can the Razorbacks stand up to national contender LSU on November 25?  Watch them fall.

• The Penn State Nittany Lions (No. 21):  Penn State is still in the hunt for a respectable season and there’s nothing Joe Paterno would rather see than a higher BCS ranking.  But how can it be? 

Thus far they’ve beaten several non-impressive teams in low-scoring games: i.e., Indiana State (41-7) Temple (14-10), East Michigan (34-6), Indiana (16-10), Iowa (13-3) and Purdue (23-18).  Their only loss is against Alabama (27-11).  It doesn’t make sense that these wins would render them a Top 25 slot in the BCS rankings.  Go figure.

• The Texas A&M Aggies  (No. 17): With close losses to Oklahoma State (29-30) and Arkansas (38-42), the Aggies killed Baylor 55-28 this past weekend.  With 35 first downs and 681 total yards of offense, the Aggies seem like a much better team than their ranking.  Against Baylor, they had no penalties and were 10 of 13 on third-down conversions.  It seems this team is ironing out its kinks and should be ranked higher.  It just doesn’t make sense.