BCS Bowl Projections
BCS National Championship
Jan. 9, 2012
New Orleans, Louisiana
LSU vs. Alabama
Barring voter revolt, the SEC rematch between LSU and Alabama is set. Even if LSU loses to Georgia in the SEC Championship Game the Tigers will remain in the Top 2 of the BCS standings based on their wins over No. 2 Alabama, No. 8 Arkansas and No. 9 Oregon.
The only thing standing in the way of this is a dominant showing by Oklahoma State in the de facto Big 12 Championship Game against Oklahoma and enough voters would need to change their minds to vault the Cowboys up the rankings.
There is a wide margin in the BCS rankings of Alabama (.9551) and Oklahoma State (.8712) making that scenario highly unlikely.
Jan. 4, 2012
Virginia Tech vs. West Virginia
Virginia Tech is a 7.5-point favorite over Clemson in the ACC Championship Game, according to college football odds. The winner of that game lands in South Beach.
The second component is a little more confusing, West Virginia needs to win at South Florida as one-point favorites and hope Cincinnati (a 9.5-point favorite) can hold off visiting Connecticut. That scenario would land the Mountaineers the Big East BCS berth, which is almost certainly the Orange Bowl.
A West Virginia loss and a Cincinnati win send the Bearcats to the BCS. A West Virginia win and a Cincinnati loss send Louisville to the Orange Bowl.
There is an outside shot that if West Virginia earns the BCS bid, the Sugar Bowl could scoop them up and pair them with Michigan.
Jan. 3, 2012
New Orleans, Louisiana
Michigan vs. Houston
Michigan, currently ranked No. 16 in the BCS, needs to get into the Top 14 to land here. That shouldn’t be a problem with No. 10 Oklahoma, No. 13 Michigan State and No. 14 Georgia all likely to lose on Saturday.
With the Sugar Bowl losing two SEC teams to the National Championship Game, they will jump at a chance to invite the BCS-starved Michigan fans.
If Houston can win as a 12.5-point favorite against Southern Miss in the Conference USA title game, it will be headed to New Orleans. A Houston loss opens the door for Boise State, Kansas State, Oklahoma State (if it loses to Oklahoma), or West Virginia (if it lands the Big East BCS berth).
Jan. 2, 2012
Oklahoma State vs. Stanford
The winner of the Bedlam game heads to the Fiesta Bowl. Oklahoma State is a 3.5-point favorite over Oklahoma in what amounts to the de facto Big 12 title game.
Stanford is all but guaranteed this spot with its current No. 4 BCS ranking and the huge draw potential with Andrew Luck.
Jan. 2, 2012
Oregon vs. Wisconsin
The Rose Bowl will stick with tradition this year and invite the winners of the Pac-12 title game and Big Ten title game. Oregon is favored by 31.5 in a Friday night mismatch against UCLA in Eugene while Wisconsin is favored by nine against Michigan State in a neutral site game in Indianapolis.
Other major bowls
Kansas State vs. Georgia
Big 12 runner-up Kansas State likely gets the nod over Oklahoma while Georgia heads to the Cotton Bowl after losing the SEC Championship Game.
Capital One Bowl
Arkansas vs. Nebraska
The Capital One Bowl likely passes on the Big Ten runner-up if it’s Michigan State and goes for Nebraska, who will not be coming off a loss. The Cornhuskers will be paired with Arkansas, the No. 8 team in the BCS but only the No. 3 team in the SEC West.
South Carolina vs. Michigan State
The Gamecocks likely land in the Outback Bowl where they will face likely Big Ten runner-up Michigan State or Wisconsin.
Ohio State vs. Florida
As they have done in the past, expect the Gator Bowl to go the unconventional route, passing on more worthy teams to put on a made-for-TV event.
Even with both Ohio State and Florida sitting at 6-6, the Gator Bowl will have a hard time passing on fielding an Urban Meyer bowl.
Clemson vs. Auburn
ACC runner-up Clemson is scooped up by the Chick-fil-A Bowl, who pairs them with Auburn after the Gator Bowl passes on them.
There is an outside chance that the ACC opts for Florida State over the ACC runner-up Clemson, who would have lost its last three games and four of five if it loses to Virginia Tech in the ACC Championship Game.
Champs Sports Bowl
Florida State vs. Notre Dame
Notre Dame is destined for the Champs Sports Bowl, where it will unseat a Big East selection. The Champs Sports Bowl will take whoever the Chick-fil-A Bowl passes on, either Clemson or Florida State.
Utah vs. Baylor
The third selection from the Pac-12 is likely to be California, Washington or Utah. We’ll say the Utes land here opposite of the fifth team from the Big 12, Baylor.
Doc Moseman is the owner of Doc’s Sports football picks Web site.