Simulated BCS Rankings Week Two: Stanford Hops To No. 3, Michigan Up To No. 12


While No. 1 Alabama rested at home in the second weekend of the 2013 season, things in the Crimson Tide’s own conference and around the country got a bit of a rattling.

Simulated BCS Rankings
Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 Oregon Ducks
3 Stanford Cardinal
4 Clemson Tigers
5 Texas A&M Aggies
Scroll down for more

Georgia, which dropped a tough game to Clemson last weekend, rebounded with a victory over top-10 South Carolina, reviving their BCS strength and giving Clemson’s win all the more luster.

And yet, the Tigers fall a spot in the BCS, landing just behind No. 3 Stanford in this week’s simulated BCS rankings after the Cardinal made their season debut Saturday.

How did we figure these out? We made the following changes to the BCS formula, to account for the pieces we have and the pieces we’re missing:

  • We’ve replaced the Harris Poll, which wont be available until mid-October, with the AP Poll
  • We’re ONLY using the available, reasonably well-connected and up-to-date BCS computers, which at this point is just Massey’s non-BCS, Sagarin’s and Billingsley’s rankings. As the various computers are released before the start of the season, we’ll add them here and update the standings.
  • In total, we’ll say these rankings reflect the real BCS rankings with 50% accuracy

South Carolina’s loss actually turned out to help along teams unconnected with the early results. Teams like Stanford, Texas A&M and even Oregon picked up some of the points the Gamecocks vacated, as their BCS stock was strengthened while Clemson took a slight hit.

The computers also helped Stanford into the third position, as Billingsley named Stanford its No. 1 team this week, while Sagarin left Clemson out of the top handful of teams all together.

Louisville and Ohio State, which were keyed here early as teams lacking in computer faith, got a little boost this week, but still need plenty of help from their upcoming schedule to invigorate their respect in the mathematical element. The numbers, at least now, are not in the Buckeyes’ and Cardinals’ favor, but that could change as we move forward.

Elsewhere, Michigan, Northwestern and Baylor secure spots in the top 16 after strong weekend victories

Here are the simulated preseason BCS rankings at the end of the second week:

2013 Simulated BCS Standings — September 9

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9887
2 Oregon Ducks .9167
3 Stanford Cardinal .8745
4 Clemson Tigers .7949
5 Texas A&M Aggies .7722
6 Ohio State Buckeyes .7311
7 LSU Tigers .7261
8 Georgia Bulldogs .7253
9 Florida State Seminoles .6572
10 Louisville Cardinals .6111
11 South Carolina Gamecocks .5715
12 Michigan Wolverines .5609
13 Oklahoma State Cowboys .5582
14 Oklahoma Sooners .5443
15 Northwestern Wildcats .2999
16 Baylor Bears .2983


Simulated BCS Rankings Week Two: Alabama, LSU continue to lead, while South Carolina springs to No. 5

Alabama and LSU might once again lead the simulated BCS rankings after two weekends of action, but after a handful of upsets and surprises, the rankings are anything but stagnant after two weeks of simulating the BCS.

Simulated BCS Rankings
Rank Team
1 Alabama Crimson Tide
2 LSU Tigers
3 Oregon Ducks
4 USC Trojans
5 South Carolina Gamecocks
Scroll down for more

The fearsome foursome — the Crimson Tide, Tigers, Oregon and USC — continue to lead the simulated BCS rankings. USC, despite holding an edge on the Ducks in both polls, are undone by a far weaker showing in the computers for a second straight weekend.

The surprises begin early this week, as South Carolina lands at the No. 5 spot to give the SEC three teams in the simulated top five. The Gamecocks land just ahead of Oklahoma and Michigan State, both of which bow barely more than .01 behind South Carolina.

The Gamecocks were the beneficiaries of level support among all elements, while the Sooner suffer from a No. 23 ranking from the early Sagarin rankings, and Michigan State still trails both teams in the polls.

If any team is truly undone by a component, however, it is No. 10 Florida State, which rests comfortably the top six in both polls, but ranks below the point-receiving threshold in all three available computers, pulling in a zero aggregate computer score.

No. 8 Georgia and No. 9 Kansas State see stark improvements in the computer rankings and polls, in large part as a result of space created by the upsets of the weekend.

These simulated rankings are not necessarily the most accurate in terms of reflecting the actual components of the BCS, but they do give an interesting first look at the BCS picture.

Without the Harris Interactive Poll (1/3 of the formula) and three of the six computers (all six of which account for another third), these rankings are about 50 percent “complete.” What we do have, however, is the USA Today Coaches’ Poll, as well as early looks at Kenneth Massey, Richard Billingsley and Jeff Sagarin, for what we’d call a 50 percent confidence that these rankings are a “good” reflection of the BCS.

We took a computer aggregate without eliminating any of the three available to keep extra transparency, but kept the formula for the human elements intact while subbing the AP Poll for the Harris Poll.

The first BCS rankings will be available in October, but for now, this will have to do. Enjoy!

Check out the full simulation worksheet. These simulated ranking reflect the following formula:

BCS Score = (AP Poll Score/1500 + Coaches Poll Score/1475 + Computer Poll Aggregate/75)/3

Here are the simulated rankings after week two:

Simulated BCS Standings — September 10

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9924
2 LSU Tigers .9437
3 Oregon Ducks .8562
4 USC Trojans .8445
5 South Carolina Gamecocks .7178
6 Oklahoma Sooners .7074
7 Michigan State Spartans .7069
8 Georgia Bulldogs .6964
9 Kansas State Wildcats .5337
10 Florida State Seminoles .5183
11 West Virginia Mountaineers .5063
12 Clemson Tigers .4816
13 Stanford Cardinal .3962
14 Virginia Tech Hokies .3755
15 Texas Longhorns .3685
16 Florida Gators .3570


USA Today Coaches’ Poll Week Two: LSU up to No. 2

On the strength of their victory over Washington, LSU is your new No. 2 team in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll, as the Tigers pass USC, who falls to No. 3.

The real story of the weekend was the upsets suffered by Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Nebraska and Wisconsin, which all see their stocks plummet in these rankings, as well as in the AP and in the various computer elements.

Oregon and Oklahoma round out the top five in the Coaches’ Poll, as neither struggled much this weekend. Much of the top 10 remained stagnant, as starting with No. 10 Michigan State, teams begin to enjoy bumps from those who had occupied those spots falling over the weekend.

USA Today Coaches’ Poll – September 9

Rank Team Votes Share of Vote
1 Alabama Crimson Tide 1455 .986
2 LSU Tigers 1380 .936
3 USC Trojans 1363 .924
4 Oregon Ducks 1292 .876
5 Oklahoma Sooners 1203 .816
6 Florida State Seminoles 1153 .782
7 Georgia Bulldogs 1120 .759
8 West Virginia Mountaineers 1024 .694
9 South Carolina Gamecocks 1008 .683
10 Michigan State Spartans 950 .644
11 Clemson Tigers 904 .613
12 Texas Longhorns 730 .495

Projected 2013 BCS Bowls — September 9th

It could have been a classic transition week, just another set of games getting us closer to the thick of conference action. Instead, we got some key upsets — many involving Big Ten schools — with enough implications to throw the early bowl picture into a bit of a tailspin.

BCS Bowl Projections
Bowl Matchup
Title Game USC vs. LSU
Rose Bowl Oregon vs. Michigan St.
Sugar Bowl Alabama vs. Oklahoma
Orange Bowl Florida St. vs. Louisville
Fiesta Bowl West Virginia vs. Michigan
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And yet, some of the nation’s best — including the already anointed four of USC, Oregon, LSU and Alabama — had a simple time of it in week two, and continue to look the part of BCS bowl bound squads.

Teams are still working their way into midseason form, so it can often feel like it’s too early to look into this crystal football, but we’ve learned plenty in two weeks. What will we learn next?

BCS National Championship Game: LSU Tigers (BCS No. 1) vs. USC Trojans (BCS No. 2)

Comment: Around this point in the season, it’s easy to slip up, stumble or even lose to the unranked foes that usually stand in the way of the big dogs. LSU and USC could have struggled — like so many others did on Saturday. Both took care of business. And neither looks any less the national standard-bearer for college football than last week.

Rose Bowl: Oregon Ducks (At-large selection) vs. Michigan State Spartans (Big Ten Champion)

Comment: The Big Ten had a rough, rough weekend — Wisconsin lost to Oregon State, Nebraska dropped a tough one to UCLA, Michigan struggled to stay on top of Air Force. Other key conference members suffered losses.

But above the struggles stands Michigan State, which has enjoyed one of the more impressive first two weeks in the country, and now look like the class of the eligible conference members. With that in mind, the Rose Bowl would be the reward if the Spartans can continue this hot start.

Oregon has been equally impressive in the first two weeks, and if they are unable to grab the Pac-12 conference title, they might land here, in the Rose Bowl as a replacement for the title game-bound Trojans.

Sugar Bowl: Alabama Crimson Tide (At-large selection) vs. Oklahoma Sooners (At-large selection)

Comment: Alabama and Oklahoma took week two by storm, handling their lesser opponents with ease. With LSU headed to the title game, Alabama would be a nice fit here. Oklahoma, as a Big 12 runner-up, would be a great get as an at-large for the bowl, as well.

Orange Bowl: Florida State Seminoles (ACC Champion) vs. Louisville Cardinals (Big East Champion)

Comment: Strong performances from Florida State and Louisville make the two squads look the part of conference favorites. As ACC champions, Florida State lands here by bowl fulfillment contract, and Louisville lands here as the last at-large selection — automatically so by winning the Big East.

Fiesta Bowl: West Virginia Mountaineers (Big 12 Champion) vs. Michigan Wolverines (At-large selection)

Comment: While Wisconsin was unable to even beat their tough foe on Saturday, Michigan was able to top Air Force, a tougher foe than many might have expected. With this in mind, Michigan might turn into the better option as an at-large selection from the Big Ten, and a strong fit here in the Fiesta Bowl. Especially if Michigan can stay BCS eligible without risking a loss in the Big Ten championship game, the Wolverines could be sitting pretty for a BCS bowl bid.

As champions of the Big 12, dangerous West Virginia gets a comfy spot in the Fiesta Bowl.