Projected BCS Standings: Oregon To Continue Holding Off FSU in Third BCS Standings of 2013

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Which victories count more? Once again, the difficulty of ranking college football will rear its head in a season with more than just two very impressive teams.

Projected BCS Rankings
Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Stanford Cardinal
Scroll down for more

This week, the difficulty is in sharper relief, especially when Oregon sat at home with Florida State getting another shot at huge national exposure after also having a prime time window against Clemson.

And just like in their victory over the Tigers, the Seminoles dominated previous BCS No. 7 Miami on national TV. So with No. 2 Oregon at home, can the Seminoles reclaim the No. 2 spot they lost last weekend?

At least for now, the answer is likely no. Though the Seminoles will get a nice boost where they’ll need it — in the polls and computers — the combination of Oregon’s renewed computer strength and it’s steadying influence at No. 2 in the BCS, likely gives us Florida St. at No. 3 once again, but far closer than they were last week.

In fact, familiarity with the position should be the name of the game in the third BCS standings of the season, with very little movement from teams that were solidly entrenched in their spots last weekend.

Clearly, Miami will fall out of it’s No. 7 spot after losing to FSU, which will allow for some upward movement from some impressive teams, including Clemson, Missouri and Auburn.

But the season is far from over. And we’re just a few days away from perhaps the most wild Thursday in college football’s recent history. So plenty of interesting things are in store. We’ll just have to figure out which one of those games — and potential victories — count more.

Remember, we’ll be here to take you through all of it, starting with tomorrow’s releases of the human polls, computer rankings and BCS. Follow along all day @BCSKnowHow and here to stay up to the second with projections, mathematical breakdowns of the computers, human polls and everything in between. Then follow along this week as we break down scenarios and implications.

Here’s what the BCS standings will likely look like when they are released tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN:

Projected BCS Standings – BCS Week Three (November 3rd)

Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Stanford Cardinal
6 Baylor Bears
7 Clemson Tigers
8 Missouri Tigers
9 Oklahoma Sooners
10 Auburn Tigers
11 Miami Hurricanes
12 Texas A&M Aggies
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Projected BCS Standings: Oregon To Claim No. 2 In Second BCS Standings of 2013

BCSWeek2

Time seems to run out slowly when you’re making a chase for a BCS bid. Whether it’s on the clock to hold on to the last-second victory or the weeks ticking slowly by in the last BCS year.

Projected BCS Rankings
Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Stanford Cardinal
Scroll down for more

Teams from around the country had little trouble dispatching of less difficult foes, but for a few teams, the time needed to get victories on Saturday must have seemed to move extra slow.

And in the case of Missouri, a crushing loss was probably already a death sentence for the season as far as a national title game bid is concerned.

So what else, if anything, did we learn this week? Mostly that the nation’s top BCS teams in its first iteration — Alabama, Oregon and Florida State — are very good. This week, like last week, we’ll see a fight to the finish for No. 2 between Oregon and Florida State.

The better victory this week belongs to the Ducks and not the Seminoles, and with that in mind, expect Oregon to make enough headway in the computers and the human polls to end the Seminoles one-week run at No. 2. Oregon is projected to take back that spot this week.

Elsewhere, the Ducks’ Pac-12 mates Stanford and Big 12 surprise Baylor will be the likely beneficiaries of the Missouri loss, as the Cardinal and Bears will fight for the No. 5 spot, along with Miami. Also look out for Oklahoma, fresh off a victory over previous No. 10 Texas Tech.

An interesting fight is also breaking out between Fresno State and Northern Illinois. Fresno State might remain ahead of Northern Illinois after the Bulldogs finished of San Diego State in OT and the Huskies had an easy victory, mostly because of the lateness of Fresno’s game. But the truly interesting part will come when the BCS rankings wind down. Who will be in front? For now we’re projecting that the Huskies will, even with Fresno possibly taking these first two weeks as the leader in the BCS buster clubhouse.

It’ll all be somewhat familiar when the second BCS rankings are released tomorrow, but with some changes that could play into the chase for the title game when the season winds up. The minutia becomes all the more important this time of year. Good thing we’re here to take a look at it.

Remember, we’ll be here to take you through all of it, starting with tomorrow’s releases of the human polls, computer rankings and BCS. Follow along all day @BCSKnowHow and here to stay up to the second with projections, mathematical breakdowns of the computers, human polls and everything in between. Then follow along this week as we break down scenarios and implications.

Here’s what the BCS standings will likely look like when they are released tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN:

Projected BCS Standings – BCS Week Two (October 27)

Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Stanford Cardinal
6 Baylor Bears
7 Miami Hurricanes
8 Clemson Tigers
9 Oklahoma Sooners
10 South Carolina Gamecocks
11 Missouri Tigers
12 Auburn Tigers

Projected 2014 BCS Bowls — October 27

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A first set of BCS rankings does have the tendency to crystallize a few things about the chase for BCS bowl bids when the season is out. Who deserves any of the 10 slots available? But more importantly, who is in best shape to grab them?

BCS Bowl Projections
Bowl Matchup
Title Game Alabama vs. Oregon
Rose Bowl Stanford vs. Ohio State
Sugar Bowl Missouri vs. Clemson
Orange Bowl Florida State vs. Louisville
Fiesta Bowl Baylor vs. Northern Illinois
Scroll down for more

A first BCS rankings might not answer all these questions, but it at least gives a good sense of where the conversation is headed. And, certainly, another weekend of games will have lots to say about the next step in this chat.

BCS National Championship Game: Alabama Crimson Tide (BCS No. 1) vs. Oregon Ducks (BCS No. 2)

Comment: When conference foes prove little to no obstacle to two of the best teams in the country, we can feel relatively confident that there’s not much wrong with the Crimson Tide and Ducks. Is there any one in the country who could pose a threat to this potential title game meeting? Sure, Florida State is sitting right there, but if these two win out, it seems like a foregone conclusion that this is our national title tandem.

Rose Bowl: Stanford Cardinal (At-large selection) vs. Ohio State Buckeyes (Big Ten champion)

Comment: Escaping with a victory over Oregon State might have been more important than it seemed on the surface to the Cardinal, given the precarious place they find themselves in. With a home game against Oregon looming and a Pac-12 full of potential upsets, the victory gave Stanford a much needed steadying victory and possible helped the Cardinal on its way to a Rose Bowl. For Ohio State, the name of the game is win out and hope out to not land in the Rose Bowl, but in the title game.

Sugar Bowl: Missouri Tigers (At-large selection) vs. Clemson Tigers (At-large selection)

Comment: A loss decimates Missouri’s hopes at a national title game bid, but could they still land in the Sugar Bowl? It’s possible. Especially with Auburn’s tough schedule upcoming and the bevy of current and upcoming two-loss teams in the SEC, the Tigers might still have the best shot at not only a bid in the SEC title game, but also a bid in a potential BCS bowl as a two-loss, 11-win SEC team. Clemson would play a nice counterpart to Missouri in a Sugar Bowl.

Orange Bowl: Florida State Seminoles (ACC champion) vs. Louisville Cardinals (AAC champion)

Comment: Florida State cruised to victory, as did Louisville, but one team’s fight to get to a BCS bowl is the more difficult, while the other’s is a fight to hope that things fall their way and they don’t land here at all. After suffering the first loss of their season, Louisville must hope that UCF stumbles badly along the way, and the Cardinals can sneak by for a BCS title game bid. Florida State is hoping that a national title game is in their future.

Fiesta Bowl: Northern Illinois Huskies (At-large selection) vs. Baylor Bears (Big 12 champion)

Comment: All Baylor does is score points and win these days, as does Northern Illinois recently. Both teams are undefeated and loving life on the loss-less side of things. As the AAC’s eventual conference champ is likely to be underwhelingly ranked in the BCS standings, things look bright for a potential BCS buster, and Northern Illinois seems to fit the billing just right. The Huskies’ competition will come from Fresno State, but expect Northern Illinois to prevail in the BCS standings when it counts even if the Bulldogs run the table. Baylor will hope to find its way into a BCS title game bid, but if not, the Fiesta Bowl is the landing spot as a host.

Heisman Watch Week Nine: Bryce Petty Makes His Move

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Johnny Manziel

Bouncing back from losses defines a season in college football, and for Johnny Manziel, Saturday gave him and Texas A&M a chance to do just that. In a solid victory over SEC foe Vanderbilt, Manziel passed for 305 yards and four touchdowns to give the Aggies just what they needed after suffering a tough second loss last weekend at the hands of Auburn.

Teddy Bridgewater

A nice bounce back victory for Louisville and Teddy Bridgewater keeps Bridgewater’s Heisman hopes alive at least for the time being, as the senior quarterback passed for 344 yards and three touchdowns against a much outmatched USF team on Saturday. After a loss to UCF last week, Bridgewater needed this kind of coasting performance in an easy win and got it. We’ll see if his Heisman stock can remain stable in the weeks to come.

Bryce Petty

In leading one of the nation’s most explosive offenses and the Big 12’s surprise season of the year thus far, quarterback Bryce Petty has played a huge role in Baylor’s rise to national prominence in 2013. Saturday was no different for the junior quarterback, as he submitted a 430-yard, three-touchdown day against lesser Kansas to run Baylor’s record to 7-0. Plus, Petty didn’t even play the full extent of the game, as he has most of the season.

Marcus Mariota  

What could have turned out to be a tough test against Pac-12 foes instead became a bit of a romp for Oregon, as UCLA proved less of a test in the second half than the first half suggested. For Marcus Mariota, the game was something of a wash, with the quarterback passing for just one touchdown and 230 yards and rushing for less than 20, far from his season averages. But still enough to lead his team to victory and give Oregon with a convincing resume win.

Jameis Winston

A cruising victory for Florida State and Jameis Winston was just what the Seminoles needed coming off a season-defining victory over Clemson last week. Winston passed for 292 yards and three touchdowns in FSU’s win over North Carolina State. The 49-17 victory over the Wolfpack came in a game that could have easily served as a trap for the Seminoles, and continued Winston’s powerful performance in his freshman year.

Projected BCS Standings: FSU, Oregon Already Jockeying For No. 2 In First BCS Standings of 2013

BCSWeek1

What is it that you don’t like about the BCS? The time to complain is kind of running out … this week marks the beginning of the end for the system, the era and the formula as we know it.

Projected BCS Rankings
Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Missouri Tigers
Scroll down for more

And wouldn’t you know it, on our very first weekend of our very last BCS year, we’re going to get some drama right off the bat. There’s no doubt what victory this weekend was the most impressive, that’s Florida State with a big win over previous No. 3 Clemson.

And yet, we have last week’s and this young season’s No. 2, Oregon, as dominating as ever, still undefeated and still putting up huge performances week after week. So which will be No. 2 when the BCS is finally released tomorrow?

Well, one of the things people have enjoyed complaining about most in this era of the BCS is voter laziness. And though tomorrow will likely show a nice push toward supporting Florida State’s superb record thus far, we’re projecting that it will be Oregon at No. 2 when the BCS is released on the strength of the voter support that remains in the Ducks’ camp. Even with the expected bump in computer poll support, Florida State might still end up just short of Oregon.

That might quell some of the traditional anger that could be associated with a shock like Florida State at No. 2 after barely cracking the top five at all this year. But even if Florida State does make up the minuscule ground they’re projected to still be lacking against Oregon (currently less than .0030 points) — the future is actually brighter in Oregon’s corner. This is a conversation will hold some water for much of the rest of the season if the teams keep reeling off wins.

Elsewhere, expect surprise powers Baylor, Missouri and Miami to be dancing inside the top 12 this week, with Baylor and Missouri taking cracks at the top five spots, where as they were outside that potential territory just a week ago. Teams like UCLA, LSU, Clemson, Louisville, South Carolina and Texas A&M will suffer for poorly timed losses on this first BCS weekend of 2013, though bounce backs are more than possible for most of those teams, including for Stanford, which dispatched of UCLA.

We’re in it for final time this year. It’s going to get even more interesting than this, and we’re going to be covering it all. Strap if for one hell of a last ride.

Remember, we’ll be here to take you through all of it, starting with tomorrow’s releases of the human polls, computer rankings and BCS. Follow along all day @BCSKnowHow and here to stay up to the second with projections, mathematical breakdowns of the computers, human polls and everything in between. Then follow along this week as we break down scenarios and implications.

Here’s what the BCS standings will likely look like when they are released tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN:

Projected BCS Standings – BCS Week One (October 20)

Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Florida State Seminoles
4 Ohio State Buckeyes
5 Missouri Tigers
6 Baylor Bears
7 Stanford Cardinal
8 Clemson Tigers
9 Miami Hurricanes
10 LSU Tigers
11 UCLA Bruins
12 Texas A&M Aggies

Projected 2014 BCS Bowls — October 20

newBCSbowls2014

One final time in college football we get to decide who plays for a national title on a set of five bowl games whose purpose is stated simply — match the two best teams at the end of the season for the national title. Do we know who those teams are yet?

BCS Bowl Projections
Bowl Matchup
Title Game Alabama vs. Oregon
Rose Bowl Stanford vs. Ohio State
Sugar Bowl Missouri vs. Clemson
Orange Bowl Florida State vs. Louisville
Fiesta Bowl Baylor vs. Northern Illinois
Scroll down for more

And better yet, do we know where eight other teams constrained to playing somewhat of a second fiddle to those national title contenders would land if the season ended today? What about in a few weeks? The beauty of the BCS was always the drama it engendered by simply existing. This year will be no different.

BCS National Championship Game: Alabama Crimson Tide (BCS No. 1) vs. Oregon Ducks (BCS No. 2)

Comment: Oregon has its chance to make the kind of national statement it needs against Stanford. A team like Florida State, however, just got its chance. And it took full advantage, but until that time comes for Oregon, it had better look in its rearview (or front-view, depending on how tomorrow plays out) mirror and watch carefully as the rest of the pack chases this bid.

Rose Bowl: Stanford Cardinal (At-large selection) vs. Ohio State Buckeyes (Big Ten champion)

Comment: Stanford did exactly what it needed to do against UCLA — bounce back from a disheartening loss to underrated (and truthfully underperforming) Utah with a big win over a top-10 team. Beyond the mental and psychological impact such bounce-back can have, the Cardinal are against clearly in the running for a bid to a BCS bowl. Lost in all this conversation is undefeated Ohio State, which might miss the title game by the skin of their teeth

Sugar Bowl: Missouri Tigers (At-large selection) vs. Clemson Tigers (At-large selection)

Comment: Tigers have been something to behold this season — the up-and-down of LSU, the early dominance of Clemson and Missouri’s resurgence as a dominant national power. At least that’s what’s transpired thus far in the college football year. Missouri has been great up and down the field and has run off an undefeated start to their season. Could they pull off the undefeated SEC regular season and show down with the likes of someone like Alabama for a shot at a title game bid?

Orange Bowl: Florida State Seminoles (ACC champion) vs. Louisville Cardinals (AAC champion)

Comment: Even with their victory over Clemson, nothing is guaranteed for Florida State. Even a No. 2 in tomorrow’s BCS rankings wouldn’t be enough to secure anything. Most teams know that as the BCS era comes to an end. The shock of Louisville’s Friday night loss shouldn’t come as a season-ending blow to the Cardinals, which remain very much alive in the AAC chase for a BCS bowl bid, which comes automatically to the conference’s champion, and could land the conference in the Orange Bowl.

Fiesta Bowl: Northern Illinois Huskies (At-large selection) vs. Baylor Bears (Big 12 champion)

Comment: Name recognition goes a long way in the BCS, as does recency of success. Northern Illinois was the BCS buster du jour of 2012. Now with an undefeated start to the 2013 season, the Huskies could very much be back in the BCS hunt. The Huskies will have some competition from Fresno State this season, but when push comes to shove, knowing the Huskies will benefit the Huskies. The Fiesta Bowl will then pair the at-large selection up with the host team, the Big 12’s champion Baylor.

Heisman Watch Week Eight: Winston Bright In A National Spotlight

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Johnny Manziel

Johnny Manziel won the 2012 Heisman on the strength of many things — his legs, his arm, his leadership, his youth and his persona. As an added bonus, the moments Manziel contributed to 2012’s season of fun were seemingly non stop. On Saturday, Manziel had a chance to submit another one of those much-coveted “Heisman moments” on Saturday. And yet, it just wasn’t there when needed this time. A visibly shaken and likely injured Manziel threw for 454 yards, accounted for five touchdowns and was key in his team’s attack. But he didn’t get the win.

Tajh Boyd

Everything that Jameis Winston achieved on Saturday night could have just as easily been Tajh Boyd’s. The national exposure, the bright lights, the top-five matchup — it was all there. But it was clear who was the better player was on this night. And it wasn’t the senior, it was the freshman. Boyd threw for one touchdown, two interceptions and didn’t complete more than 35 percent of his passes.

Teddy Bridgewater

A Friday night seemed to fit undefeated and No. 8 Louisville just right. And yet, things didn’t feel perfect for Louisville from the get-go. And Bridgewater and the Cardinals went down hard. Bridgewater’s 341 yards and two touchdowns were big, and continue a trend of the leader putting up big numbers no matter the opponent, but Louisville lost. And in a race that is so crowded at the quarterback position, Bridgewater needed to also be in the thick of the title game race to make some headway in the Heisman race.

AJ McCarrron

AJ McCarron seems to know exactly how to, with neurosurgeon-like efficiency and accuracy — pick apart a defense in the most simple way possible, and get the most out of his time on the field. McCarron completed 15 of 21 passes, threw for 180 yards and three touchdowns in Alabmaa’s blowout victory over Arkansas, the Crimson Tide’s second straight such win in as many seasons. McCarron has been the leader the Tide has needed in those big wins.

Marcus Mariota  

Marcus Mariota wont stop. Against a surprisingly game Washington State team, Mariota and the Ducks went to work. And work they did — Mariota threw for two touchdowns and 327 yards. But that wasn’t it — Mariota ran for another touchdown and a nice collection of 67 yards. The chunk of that rushing total was the game’s first score, and proved once against what a threat Mariota is all over the field.

Jameis Winston

Jameis Winston took control. Winston took total control of the game against Clemson, the Seminoles offense, and the media’ attention with his performance against the Tigers. Winston threw for 444 yards, accounted for four touchdowns and was the star of the biggest game of the season in college football thus far. Completing nearly 90 percent of his passes, Winston looked well beyond his years and drove the Seminoles to a convincing and dominating win against No. 3 Clemson.