Pac-12 Football: 7 Reasons Stanford Could Get Screwed by the BCS
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Stanford is currently the best team in the Pac-12. They are undefeated and going strong, but it wouldn't be surprising to see the BCS screw the Cardinal.
We've seen it before with teams like Boise State, and the 2001 Oregon Ducks. It appears as though this could be Stanford's year to get the shaft.
The following is a breakdown of Stanford, and a few reasons why the Cardinal may not be happy with the BCS come January.
Andrew Luck is considered the best player in the country.
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Stanford boasts the fifth-most efficient offense in the nation. They average 45.8 points a game and have an average winning margin of 36 points.
This is, in no small part, thanks to their quarterback Andrew Luck, who is considered to be a runaway-favorite to win the Heisman.
Stanford's offense is playing at an incredible level. They've been blowing out opponents, and they should be considered a top-five team right now.
Chase Thomas has been a star on defense for the Cardinals.
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The Cardinals have the fifth-best defense in the nation. They have allowed an average of just 11.8 points in their first six games.
I don't care who you play, a team that has a top-five defense and offense after six weeks of football is top-five football team. Yet, Stanford sits at No. 7 in the BCS poll.
It appears as though the stars are aligning for Stanford to get screwed, and here are a few of the reasons why the Palo Alto school will get jipped by the BCS.
East Coast Bias
Why is Virginia Tech always considered good?
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Stanford play in the Pac 12 with schools along the west coast of the country, this puts the start time of Stanford's games at 8 p.m. or later.
This leads to the rankers usually seeing only the score of Stanford's games, not the game itself. Numbers do tell a story, but they don't tell the whole story.
It's impossible to judge how great a team is if you only see their scores. Since a majority of the rankings specialists focus on the East Coast, Stanford is at a clear disadvantage because of their geographic location.
Andrew Luck stayed for his senior year so that he could earn his degree.
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Do you think Cam Newton could have gotten into Stanford? The answer is no, not even close.
Stanford has a very strict policy with regards to the admission of their students. The Cardinal have some of the toughest academic admission requirements for student-athletes in the nation.
Because of this, Stanford coaches are subjected to an extremely narrow and limited pool of high school athletes that they can recruit from. Unlike USC, the football program cannot open the doors for admission in Palo Alto.
With a lack of big-name recruits, no one really knows to look out for Stanford. They don't bring in top high school athletes, so their players hold no weight nationally. This is a huge disadvantage that leads to people discounting the Cardinal come January.
Perceived Weakness of the Pac-12
The Pac-12 gets no respect.
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To be perfectly honest, I don't understand where this mentality comes from, but other parts of the country hate the Pac-12.
The Pac-12 is viewed as weak conference, with no credible teams. Interesting, seeing as going back to 2001 Pac-10 teams are 10-4 in BCS bowl games. In that same time the Big 10 has a 6-14 record in BCS Bowl games.
The Big 10 is always one of the most overrated conferences in the nation, and it is a shame that the Pac-10, now Pac-12, is perceived to be so inferior.
If a Big 10 team steals a BCS spot from Stanford, and loses their bowl game, I may just go crazy. But it wouldn't be surprising.
Notre Dame has a football tradition.
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Stanford does not have a tradition or history of great football teams. They've had their moments, but those moments come and go.
Notre Dame is one school that is synonymous with college football. When you hear Notre Dame, you think college football. The same can't be said for Stanford.
The reason the top 25 looks somewhat similar every year, is because some teams are just meant to be there. And it is not always justified. Viriginia Tech is a great example of this.
Virginia Tech always seem to find their way into the top 20 of the BCS. Yet they've lost nine of their last 15 bowl games. A winning percentage of 40 percent is not too impressive if you ask me.
The BCS and polls like football history, though. This is where Stanford will most likely get hurt.
Jim Harbaugh Is Gone
Jim Harbaugh has taken the NFL by storm.
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When Jim Harbaugh left Stanford to test his abilities in the NFL, he took with him the public perception that Stanford could be a top team.
It's hard to argue that this shouldn't have been the case, look at the job that Harbaugh has done with the 49ers. They're 5-1 in their first six games, and they keep finding ways to win football games.
That being said, Stanford is still a formidable team among the college ranks. Andrew Luck is arguably the best quarterback this country has produced in a decade. He simply doesn't make mistakes.
At the end of last year, Stanford was the best college football team in the country. They would have annihilated Oregon, Auburn or anyone else they played. That is simply a fact.
But the BCS doesn't care about that. Big names are what carry weight in the BCS and without Harbaugh, Stanford only has Andrew Luck. One quarterback can get you places, but it won't help you much in the BCS.