BCS Rankings: Ranking the Subpar Big Ten and the Major Conferences
With Wisconsin losing to Michigan State last night, it seems as though the Big Ten once again lacks that superior team who could play for the BCS National Championship.
Over the years, Big Ten football has slipped a bit from the glory days and no longer has the depth that it used to have.
The conference is very top-heavy with two or three legitimate contenders in the country, along with some mediocre teams and some very bad teams.
Luckily for the Big Ten, the Big East exists. Otherwise, they may be lingering at the bottom of the list of major conferences in college football.
No. 6 Big East
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The Big East has long been the worst automatic-qualifying conference in college football, and that is no different this year.
West Virginia was thought to be the conference's one elite team this season, but they proceeded to go to the Carrier Dome and get blown out by Syracuse to prove us all wrong.
Other than the Mountaineers, the conference is full of mediocre and bad teams that beat up on each other.
The winner of the conference is likely to have four or five loses, yet they still get a berth to a BCS bowl.
Last season, at 8-4, the Connecticut Huskies gained a berth to the Fiesta Bowl and went on to get blown out by Oklahoma.
It is clear that Big East teams cannot really compete with the rest of the country, and with Pittsburgh and Syracuse leaving for the ACC, they may be on the verge of losing their automatic-qualifying status if they can't find replacements—something that I don't think the BCS would mind.
No. 5 ACC
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With the Clemson program playing how it is, it seems as though the ACC is on the rise—but they are not there just yet.
When the ACC brought over Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College from the Big East, they expected their football to take a big jump, but that has not been the case.
Out of the three, the Hokies are the only ones who have enjoyed any type of prolonged success.
Florida State was supposed to be the team to beat this year in the ACC, but they couldn't hack it with teams like Oklahoma. Clemson has risen to the top and given them a legitimate National Championship contender, something the ACC hasn't had since the early 2000s with the dominant Seminole teams.
After losses to Oklahoma and Wisconsin, the Tigers should be ranked No. 4 in the new BCS rankings in great position to challenge for the BCS National Championship.
With what Dabo Swinney is doing at Clemson and Al Golden seems to be doing at Miami, the ACC may be on the rise in the next couple of years.
No. 4 Big Ten
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After Wisconsin lost to Michigan State last night, it appears that there are no elite teams in the Big Ten, only a few very good ones.
The Badgers were supposed to be the team to challenge for the National Championship out of the Big Ten, but that is no longer the case after the loss.
For a while now, the Big Ten has been stuck in a rut of mediocrity with a very top-heavy conference.
Ohio State had been the only real elite team for years and years until being joined by Wisconsin recently.
After the first two or three teams at the top, the Big Ten gets really bad.
Teams like Indiana have lost to Ball State and North Texas, embarrassing losses for a team from a BCS conference.
The Big Ten needs teams like Michigan and Penn State to return to prominence.
For now, it looks like we will have another year without a National Championship contender from the Big Ten.
No. 3 Pac-12
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The Pac-12 has been on the rise in recent years with the emergence of two of the elite teams in college football—Oregon and Stanford.
It used to be a one-man show with USC, but the Ducks and Cardinal have made the Pac-12 a legitimate conference.
The conference is a bit top-heavy, but once USC rids their NCAA sanctions, Lane Kiffin should return the program to prominence to give the conference three legitimate BCS National Championship contenders each year, something not a lot of conferences have.
No. 2 Big 12
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Despite almost being torn apart by conference realignment, the Big 12 remains one of the country's top football conferences.
If Nebraska didn't jump for the Big Ten, the conference may even be able to challenge the SEC for the nation's top conference.
As with the last ranking, the conference has two teams in the Top Five and five in the Top 25, a feat only matched by the SEC.
It is rare to see a conference with so many good teams, but there are only two teams in the Big 12 that you can play and almost guarantee a win—Iowa State and Kansas.
Texas Tech's win over Oklahoma last night shows how good the conference is from top to bottom as the Red Raiders are near the bottom in conference rankings.
No. 1 SEC
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With a little pressure from the Big 12, the SEC remains college football's top conference.
The recent dominance shown by the SEC is unprecedented, as teams from the conference have won five straight BCS National Championships and look to be headed for their sixth this season.
In the rankings, the SEC currently has five teams in the Top 25, including the nations top two teams—LSU and Alabama.
With the addition of Texas A&M and likely Missouri, the conference is only going to get better while weakening its toughest competition in the Big 12.
Expect the SEC to remain supreme as the king of college football for many years to come.