The BCS Needs To Stray from Iowa, Penn State

Andrew GarriganContributor IDecember 6, 2009

STATE COLLEGE, PA - SEPTEMBER 26:  Ricky Stanzi #12 of the Iowa Hawkeyes along with Adam Robinson #32 and Brett Morse #36 celebrate a 21-10 victory over the Penn State Nittnay Lions with Iowa fans on September 26, 2009 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Iowa and Penn State have an outside shot at a BCS Bowl game and neither deserve to get it.  I am as big a Nittany Lion fan as they come and hated to see Iowa not once, but twice stall a Penn State team from winning.  Iowa has a good case with a victory over then No. 5 PSU and their loss to then No. 11 Ohio State isn't glaring but the loss to Northwestern is.

Northwestern isn't a horrible team by any means, but for Iowa to supplant itself in a bowl game, it needed to win the Big Ten, which it failed to do. 

Sure a record of 10-2 (6-2) is still a good season, their wins aren't strong enough to put the Hawkeyes against a top team in the nation. 

They won by three against Arkansas State, won by two to Michigan, won by one to Northern Iowa, won by two to Michigan State and the score of the Indiana game (42-28) was MUCH closer than that leads to be.

Iowa is a good football team that got it done when it needed to get done, but if you want to play the best teams in the nation, you can't just squeak by the likes of Arkansas State and Northern Iowa.

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A two-loss campaign is not anything to sneeze at but the way that this system is set up, its not really WHO you lose to, but WHEN you lose those games.  Last year, Florida lost to an un-ranked Ole Miss in week four and went on to win the National Championship (beating Alabama in the SEC Championship also helps). 

Although a loss to an un-ranked team could be an Achilles' heel to most top ranked teams, they lost early enough to rebound and throw in a 70 point bombed they dropped on The Citadel, they managed to still win. 

Iowa's two losses have come in the last three weeks of the year, including to an un-ranked Northwestern team.  The other was a close three point loss to Ohio State in The Shoe.  Iowa needed to beef up its OOC schedule, or roll through it, which they didn't do and they don't deserve a place in a BCS game.

I love JoePa.

I love Happy Valley.

I love Nittany Lion Football.

They don't deserve a BCS Game.

Literally, I shiver when I typed that last one but they really don't deserve one.  QB Daryl Clark has shown again and again that he cannot put the team on his back and lead them to victory. 

He lost it to Iowa this year, couldn't move the ball against them this year, couldn't move it against Ohio State this year and got slaughtered by the Trojans in a USC home game, I mean Rose Bowl last year.  The score wasn't even close to what USC did to the Lions that day.

The OOC schedule that Penn State drew up this year was designed for them go undefeated and be in the mix for a National Championship.  Oops. They didn't realize that you still have win your Conference games, especially when the only ranked team you play is Ohio State, who gets knocked for not being able to win on the national screen.

They rolled through Akron, Syracuse, Temple and Eastern Illinois, but an early loss to an un-ranked Iowa team, and then a disaster showing against Ohio State proved that PSU isn't as good as their schedule states and would get beaten by any team that is destined for a Bowl Game. 

They also missed playing Wisconsin who was ranked as high as No. 16 before an upset 33-31 defeat at the hands of Northwestern.

If PSU wants to shine on the national level and be taken for a National Championship game, they also need to beef up their OOC schedule, which they have done starting a home and home against Alabama, and the Big Ten needs to get better and come out from behind the cloud of slower, and not as athletic athletes that they currently sit behind. 

Going undefeated goes a long way in the BCS rankings, but when your wins are against two MAC teams, a Big East doormat and a directional Illinois team, you HAVE to win out and the Nittany Lions didn't do that and aren't a good enough football team to make it a a BCS Bowl game.


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