With the #1 Ducks on their much needed bye week I thought that this could be an interesting time to look at the BCS in general. While we all know the BCS is crazy, it is the system that is used whether teams and fans like it or not. Coming into the last few weeks there are a lot of questions that still need to be answered. So I will start with a few things I predict can happen these last few weeks of the season. If you’re an Oregon Duck fan start knocking on wood right now.
The 2 teams with clear paths to the national championship are obviously Oregon and Auburn. Each team has 2 games left. Oregon will play #23 Arizona at home and then head on the road to play Oregon State in the Civil War. Arizona has remained in the top-25 all season, but the Wildcats have lost their last 2 games to Stanford and USC respectively. With this game being played in Autzen Stadium and with the Ducks coming off of a bye week to prepare for a tough Arizona defense Chip Kelly should have his troops ready. Not to mention Oregon is a win away from grabbing their second straight Pac-10 championship. I cannot see the Ducks letting Arizona stay in the game unless Oregon’s players are feeling extreme pressure. Oregon State will be excited to play the Ducks and have a shot to ruin their title hopes, but coming off of consecutive loses to the two worst teams in the Pac-10 (UCLA and Washington State) the Beavers are struggling to stay afloat. But for goodness sakes if you are a member of the media DO NOT ask Chip Kelly about anything other than the next game. He will just give you a vague answer, look you in the eyes and shoot laser beams into your soul. The man does not like the media, and he never will. So just let him coach and leave it at that.
Auburn on the other hand has games at #11 Alabama and the SEC championship game against #17 South Carolina. All anyone wants to talk about when they think about Auburn is Cam Newton and what trouble he may or may not be in. This is a real tragedy to me because Newton is the best player in college football and it’s really not even close. I love LaHeisman James just as much as anyone, but Newton’s versatility and combination of size, speed and athleticism are unmatched. Plus his smile…well by gosh it’s fantastic, who could indict him if he flashes those pearly whites? Those of you hoping the downfall of Newton is right around the corner are most likely going to be disappointed. These investigations take time, so expect more of a Reggie Bush timetable rather than immediate action.
Personally I think Auburn is going to have a lot of trouble winning these last 2 games even with Newton. Yes, Alabama has struggled and they are far from last year’s level of dominance. But if they stick to the run game and play the kind of defense they are capable of they will beat the Tigers. Bama may be one of the few defenses athletic and versatile enough to contain Newton, and Auburn’s defense is not great by SEC standards. South Carolina has less of a shot, but Steve Spurrier has done it before and his running back Marcus Lattimore is very talented.
If Auburn and Oregon both win out they will be in the title game without question. However, I do see Auburn, if they can win two difficult games by double digits, jumping Oregon in the polls before all is said and done. Granted all that means is that Oregon will be slightly more constricted in their uniform choice, but I’m sure they’ll come up with something. But should Auburn fall all hell will break lose.
If Boise St. can beat Nevada on the road in convincing fashion most agree they will jump past current #3 TCU. TCU’s major victory of the year against Utah has been proven a fraud after Utah got handled by Notre Dame. Boise still has a ranked opponent on their schedule (Nevada) and momentum in the human polls. Also since they beat a Virginia Tech team that is looking more and more like the ACC champion, look for Boise to get bumped in the computers.
Also if the season were to end today an undefeated Boise St. and a one loss Stanford team would both not be in BCS games. Stanford’s only loss came on the road at Oregon. What I don’t understand is why #9 Ohio State is predicted to get an at-large BCS bid before Stanford.
Here are a few questions that I have:
Should Auburn lose to Alabama but beat South Carolina, do they still deserve a spot in the title game over Boise or TCU?
Does a one-loss LSU or Stanford deserve a possible shot? Their only losses on the year have come to Auburn and Oregon respectively. Granted if Auburn should lose that does take away from LSU’s strength.
Who would Oregon rather play? If they play Auburn it shapes up to be an offensive shoot-out, which the Ducks would be comfortable in doing. But even though TCU and Boise St. come from weaker divisions, they are very well rounded on both sides of the ball. TCU and Boise both have defenses that could give Oregon’s offense some trouble and both have shown they can score as well. Personally I would like to see Oregon v. Auburn because I think the Ducks would play the style they want and they would not have to listen to critics say they didn’t win the championship since it was against an opponent from a weak league. Granted I think those critics wrong and that TCU and Boise both deserve chances to take on the big boys, but that’s not my call.
I would really love to hear some opinions about the rest of the season from all 3 of the people that will probably read this blog. Everyone has a view on these topics so let’s see who can make the best points. Answer and of the questions or just say something nice.
About the Author
Written by Rob Parness
My name is Robbie Parness and I am a student at the University of Oregon. I'm a California native that loves to play, watch and talk about all kinds of sports. I would love to become a sports writer someday or work in sports in any capacity.