Did anyone pick Kansas State to be a BCS contender back in August?
Didn't think so. But here we are at the end of November, and the Wildcats are right in the thick of things in the Big 12. Depending on the results of Bedlam in Stillwater, the Wildcats could find themselves in a tie atop the Big 12 at season's end.
While the Wildcats were defeated by both the Sooners and Cowboys, the Wildcats were able to avoid any embarrassments to teams like Texas Tech or Iowa State.
With only a modest boost in rankings, the Wildcats could easily find themselves headed for New Orleans to play in the 2012 Sugar Bowl.
Unfortunately for K-State fans, the opponent is going to be one of the very best teams in the nation.
Usually the SEC champion appears in the Sugar Bowl, except when playing in the BCS title game. Since that's happened for the last handful of years, we usually see the SEC runner-up in the Sugar Bowl. Wrong again, at least for this season.
As distasteful as it is, the BCS rankings will likely put two SEC teams against one another in a déja vu contest. It's nothing to whet the appetite of college football fans across the nation that a sloppy field-goal-fest was the warm-up game to the national championship.
But that leaves us with a second at-large team for the Sugar Bowl and the second selection for the Pac-12.
The Stanford Cardinal have spend the entire season floating around the Top 10 in the polls, and while never really impressing the world like last season, the Andrew Luck-led team has been unswervingly solid in its play for most of the year.
The Pac-12 North will come down to the head-to-head tiebreaker between Oregon and Stanford, so the Cardinal will miss out on a chance to play in the first-ever Pac-12 title game, but that doesn't mean their repeat BCS hopes are gone.
Quite the contrary. Andrew Luck is one of the very best players in the nation, and any BCS bowl would be glad to have him playing on its field. The Sugar Bowl will be lucky enough to host Luck's final game in the Stanford uniform.
PROJECTION: Stanford vs. Kansas State