BCS Rankings: 5 Teams That Will Be Out of the Top 25 by Season's End
Another exciting week of college football has passed, as has the "Game of the Century" with the LSU Tigers proving victorious over the Alabama Crimson Tide in their own Bryant-Denny Stadium. The Tigers shocked more than 100,000 Crimson Tide faithful late Saturday night, but that wasn't the only BCS shocker in Week 10.
In the Top 25, there were several teams that fell.
The South Carolina Gamecocks fell to the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Nebraska Cornhuskers fell to Northwestern late in the game at Nebraska. Arizona State fell in a surprise upset against the UCLA Bruins, who are now in control of their own destiny in the Pac-12 South Division, and the Kansas State Wildcats fell after rallying to almost upset the Oklahoma State Cowboys.
With the polls set to be released later, there are several notable teams that—based on recent performance and schedule—could see themselves out of the Top 25 by season's end. There are five in particular that share this fate of Top 25 rejection.
The West Virginia Mountaineers are one of these teams.
Once the pride of the Big East, the Mountaineers have been set back by the likes of allegations by former coaches Rich Rodriguez and Bill Stewart, but have taken steps in the right direction with head coach Dana Holgorsen. They need a couple seasons to grasp and buy into Holgorsen's system and coaching staff personnel.
Once off to a good start, West Virginia has suffered some setbacks in the Big East, falling to the likes of Louisville and falling to third place in the Big East. The Mountaineers are effectively out of contention for the title and a BCS bowl bid.
With their recent performance in the Big East and an upcoming game with Pittsburgh, West Virginia may be on the outside of the Top 25 looking in come the end of the regular season and the final Top 25 rankings.
The most obvious choice, the Auburn Tigers have not been the same without any kind of Cam Newton and little to offer at the skill positions on offense—not to mention the lack of a defensive tackle like Nick Fairley in the middle of the defense to anchor their defensive line.
Yet the Tigers remained as the only three-loss team coming into Week 10.
But with the schedule they have left, coupled with their performance all season long, we will be seeing Gene Chizik's Auburn Tigers resting outside of the Top 25 polls soon with the likes of the Georgia Bulldogs and the Alabama Crimson Tide still left on the schedule.
Auburn has some serious work to do in the offseason if it even wants to compete in the SEC West division.
Since last season, the Texas Longhorns have not been the same.
While the Longhorns look to have a bright future with their superb running game and the second coming of the next McCoy-Shipley duo, this year is not their year—especially with the likes of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State becoming the rulers of the Big 12 this season.
The Longhorns have their moments at times, but they find ways to lose games due to their youth on offense and inability to compete with the upper powers of the Big 12. With the hot seat possibly increasing for head coach Mack Brown, the Longhorns need to do some serious thinking about what they have to work with going forward and if Brown will continue to be a part of it since this Longhorns team has not been the same since the departure of the first McCoy-Shipley duo.
The Arizona State Sun Devils, who became a threat in the Pac-12 South Division, shocked the division by falling against the UCLA Bruins on Saturday and putting the UCLA Bruins in the driver's seat for the Pac-12 South Division—not to mention a shot at the Pac-12 Championship.
The Sun Devils were noted for their solid offense, but their defense has been suspect, and was instrumental in their downfall against Rick Neuheisel and his UCLA Bruins (which has effectively saved his job once again). The Sun Devils' performance has been lacking despite their Pac-12 status, and this loss could come back to hurt them several more times. They could see themselves back out of the Top 25 before they really got settled in.
Perhaps the biggest shocker on this list is the Wisconsin Badgers, who once started out the season as one of many national championship contenders.
They have only gone on to win one out of their last three games, with those two losses coming on the last Hail Mary play of the game. Wisconsin has unfortunately let one loss beat them twice,and it's not guaranteed that they will necessarily win out the rest of their games based on their performance these last three weeks.
The Badgers are walking on a thin line, and despite having a good running attack and an athletic quarterback in Russell Wilson under center, they are walking a thin line in both the Big Ten race and the Top 25 poll. Should they falter, they will effectively end their season outside of the Top 25, unlike where they started to begin the season. Wilson needs to show he can finish a season strong, or the Badgers will have to begin their offseason quarterback competition with him leaving after the season.