BCS Bowl Predictions: Which Teams Are Most Likely to Return in 2013?
If there was any doubt that the BCS bowl selection process was broken, tonight should have confirmed it. Somehow the ACC and Big Ten got two teams into BCS bowls and the Big 12 only got one. In no way should either Clemson or Virginia Tech have received BCS bowl bids.
The fact is that the ACC and Big East should not have automatic bids. However, they do, and as long as the system remains this way this process will continue.
As a result, I have listed the teams who are most likely to return to BCS bowls next season.
Oklahoma State Cowboys
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Here is a news flash that voters missed: Oklahoma State is a solid football program that will be competitive as long as Mike Gundy is the head coach. Yes, the Cowboys will be losing some impressive players this season, but this has been the case the last few seasons.
I remember thinking they were going to digress when Dez Bryant left. However, Gundy can coach up players and puts them in their best possible situation for success.
There is no team in the Big 12 that will knock off the Cowboys anytime soon.
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The Oregon Ducks are a team that will likely become a fixture in the BCS bowls. They run a system that is very difficult to face with just one week of preparation. Next season the automatic bid will be between them and USC.
However, even if USC defeats them they should be able to land an automatic bowl bid. My only issue with Oregon is it makes for a boring bowl game. With time to prepare for its offense, defenses usually make it sputter.
In all likelihood, the Ducks will be back next season.
Virgina Tech Hokies
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Virginia Tech is likely to return to a BCS bowl next season even though it did not deserve one this season. The Hokies were dismantled in their championship game against Clemson. However, the sad reality is that the ACC is so weak they will always be in contention for the automatic bid, and if they don’t get that they can get an at-large bid.
The Hokies are a perfect example of an abused system. Play in a mediocre conference and a weak out-of-conference schedule and you are BCS bound.
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The question is not if LSU will get back to a BCS bowl, the question is which one. The Tigers might be the best team of the BCS era, and the scary part is that they could be even better next season.
A lot will depend on which players declare early. However, the thing that makes LSU so good for the foreseeable future is that it rotates so many players that it doesn’t even reload—it just increases a few players playing time.
Les Miles has the Tigers set for a great run that could become a dynasty.