Well, we are almost within reach of the end of the 2011 college football season, and I am more confused now than ever.
After last week's "game of the century," I thought maybe the national title game was set in stone, which meant the two contenders were Oklahoma State and LSU, and Stanford was still in the hunt.
If that was the case, we are now a man down. Stanford losing to Oregon doesn't mean much for the top two teams, but for Alabama it means the world. Why? No. 1, it means the Tide will retain their No. 3 ranking in the BCS which is huge at this point in the season. No. 2, they are still contenders.
We have also lost another team who we believed was a contender in Boise State. Its loss puts it out, even though I didn't think it had too great of a chance anyways. Also with that loss to TCU, many of Boise's winning streaks were killed—including that record-setting home win streak in which Boise has dominated the blue turf.
Aside from the lost contenders, we have gained some pretty convincing contenders with one loss outside of Alabama.
Oregon and Oklahoma will jump into the top 5 most likely and immediately become title contenders. Oklahoma may have the edge between them though, considering the Sooners still have a shot at No. 2 Oklahoma State, and also that Oregon has already been beaten by the top-ranked LSU Tigers.
Alabama doesn't really have another tough opponent the rest of the season, so its only true chance is an Oklahoma State loss or an LSU loss to Arkansas. Oregon's only shot would be an LSU loss, an Alabama loss and an Oklahoma or Oklahoma State loss. Oklahoma has to hope it can win out and for Alabama to lose at least one more game.
If LSU loses to Arkansas, then it would be a three-way tie in the SEC west. So how would this be settled?
It would have to go to the seventh tiebreaker ruling, which would mean the highest BCS ranked team would win, and that if they were within five spots of each other, then it would go by head-to-head outcome.
So as you can see, the SEC west will be decided in the LSU- Arkansas game. Or maybe it was decided in the Nov. 5th matchup between Alabama and LSU? That question remains unanswered, but the main question is WHO WILL BE IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME?
BCS National Championship - LSU vs. Oklahoma State
Orange Bowl - Houston vs. Virginia Tech
Rose Bowl - Oregon vs. Michigan State
Sugar Bowl - Alabama vs. Cincinnati
Fiesta Bowl - Oklahoma vs. Stanford