Post-Season BCS Rankings Simulation: Alabama A Non-Unanimous Choice For No. 1

Alabama claimed the BCS national title, but was not a unanimous choice among the components of BCS system and the AP poll.

To see just how the bevy of season’s end rankings played out, we’ve set out to simulate a set of BCS rankings, using the AP poll in place of the Harris poll. What we get is a good aggregate of all of the final rankings, and the equivalent of a year-end, final BCS rankings.

We also used the six BCS computers, not all of which declared Alabama as the top team in the nation. In fact, both Oklahoma State and LSU claimed the top spot in one computer ranking.

Mostly, this is just for fun, a good look at what the BCS standings would look like if they were released after the end of the season. The formula is exactly the same as the BCS utilizes during the regular season, except the AP poll is subbed in for the Harris Interactive Poll, which does not release a post-season edition.

Unsurprisingly, Alabama leads the way, despite its non-unanimous support. LSU and Oklahoma State finish in their expected No. 2 and No. 3 spots, respectively.

Arkansas and Oregon see the completion of strong regular seasons and impressive bowl victories to both finish in the top five.

A little further down, we get a surprising sixth-place finish from South Carolina, who are chased closely by Boise State, where the Broncos finish just .0003 behind the Gamecocks. For fun, we placed USC in the mix, as they are named in all six computers and in the AP. We just replicated the portion the No. 9 Trojans got in the AP for the Coaches’ and used the computers as per usual.

Other surprises include No. 10 Baylor, who completes a fantastic season led by Heisman-winning quarterback Robert Griffin III and the non-AQ No. 16 Houston and No. 17 TCU, both of which had shots at BCS bowl bids but were shut out on the last weekend — a Houston loss and TCU finishing outside of the top-16.

Here’s BCS Know How’s simulated post-season BCS rankings:

Simulated Post-Season BCS Rankings

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9922
2 LSU Tigers .9540
3 Oklahoma State Cowboys .9298
4 Oregon Ducks .8260
5 Arkansas Razorbacks .8214
6 South Carolina Gamecocks .7267
7 Boise State Broncos .7264
8 Stanford Cardinal .7193
9 USC Trojans .6981
10 Baylor Bears .5718
11 Michigan Wolverines .5688
12 Wisconsin Badgers .5337
13 Oklahoma Sooners .5250
14 Michigan State Spartans .5234
15 Kansas State Wildcats .5040
16 Houston Cougars .4305
17 TCU Horned Frogs .4156
18 West Virginia Mountaineers .3068
19 Georgia Bulldogs .2689
20 Virginia Tech Hokies .2483

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Simulated BCS Standings Week Six: Alabama Claims Top Spot While Oklahoma, LSU Battle For No. 2

Alabama remains atop this week’s simulated BCS rankings, while Oklahoma and LSU take the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, respectively.

The Crimson Tide used first-place votes from three of the five BCS computers (Sagarin, Massey, Colley) to remain ahead of the Sooners and Tigers in this week’s projections. LSU (Billingsley) and Oklahoma (Anderson and Hester) each picked up one first-place computer vote

Now you may be wondering why this simulation differs slightly from the one announced by ESPN themselves. The simulation procedure is slightly different, as explained below, but the important thing is that the difference between the Tigers and Sooners is negligible. The race for No. 2 is a virtual dead heat after six weeks of play, and that’s where we stand as of right now.

Oklahoma State pushes past Boise State for No. 4, giving the Big 12 and SEC two teams each in the top four of the simulation.

Other surprises further down the rankings show Michigan in a surprisingly strong spot, while Oregon gets some tough love from some of the computers.

As a point of reference, the methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

We have the two human elements covered, as both the USA Today Coaches’ Poll and the Harris Interactive College Football poll are available. We do not, however, have all six computer rankings. Peter Wolfe’s rankings will not be released until next week, when the actual BCS rankings are finally made available.

Because of the lack of full-scale computer components, we will not take out the high and low computer rankings, as the BCS normally does. That would only cloud the rankings this early in the season. For now, with a 94.4 percent confidence, if the BCS rankings were released today, this is what they would look like:

Simulated BCS Rankings — October 10th

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9634
2 Oklahoma Sooners .9534
3 LSU Tigers .9512
4 Oklahoma State Cowboys .8266
5 Boise State Broncos .8066
6 Wisconsin Badgers .7604
7 Clemson Tigers .7480
8 Stanford Cardinal .7021
9 Michigan Wolverines .6091
10 Arkansas Razorbacks .5636
11 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets .5512
12 Oregon Ducks .5196
13 Illinois Fighting Illini .5021
14 Kansas State Wildcats .4464
15 South Carolina Gamecocks .4064
16 Nebraska Cornhuskers .3948

Some thoughts:

  • Oregon continues to slide although it keeps winning, finding itself all the way at No. 12 this week.
  • Clemson and Wisconsin swap places even though the Badgers were idle. No much to the switch, though, as the two are separated by less than .0200.

Simulated BCS Standings Week Five: Alabama Surges to the Top

On the strength of an impressive victory over Florida, Alabama sees a huge growth in support across the BCS components, and claims the top spot in this week’s simulated BCS rankings.

Boise State creeps past Oklahoma State this week, bowing at No. 4, while the Cowboys slip a spot to No. 5.

Clemson’s consecutive victories over undefeated, highly ranked ACC foes, also allows the Tigers to take a huge leap to No. 6 this week, giving Clemson a surprisingly strong position.

As a point of reference, the methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

For starters, there is no Harris Interactive Poll quite yet, and two of the six computer ranking systems, the Anderson and Hester system and the Peter Wolfe rankings are non-operational. For the time being, we’ve substituted the AP poll for the Harris, and will include the four available computers — Sagarin, Massey, Colley and Billingsley — in the simulation. This early in the season, there’s little need to zero out a computer, it would only cloud the picture of this process.

Simulated BCS Rankings — October 3rd

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9637
2 LSU Tigers .9393
3 Oklahoma Sooners .8816
4 Boise State Broncos .8187
5 Oklahoma State Cowboys .8039
6 Clemson Tigers .7752
7 Wisconsin Badgers .7540
8 Stanford Cardinal .7262
9 Texas Longhorns .5938
10 Michigan Wolverines .5564
11 Oregon Ducks .5549
12 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets .4861
13 Arkansas Razorbacks .4691
14 Illinois Fighting Illini .4274
15 Nebraska Cornhuskers .3759
16 Auburn Tigers .3513

Some thoughts:

  • It’s not really until we get past Stanford at No. 8 that things get a little interesting, new faces in the rankings Michigan, Texas and Georgia Tech are slowly creeping into the top slots, providing a few interesting scenarios in the coming weeks.
  • Illinois also makes an interesting appearance at No. 14, with Auburn reappearing at No. 16.

Simulated BCS Standings Week Four: LSU Reclaims Top Spot

Once again, LSU reclaims the top spot in the simulated BCS rankings.

We’ve included both Colley’s Matrix in this week’s simulation and utilized Massey’s BCS column, for the fullest picture of the BCS standings we’ve had yet.

As a point of reference, the methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

For starters, there is no Harris Interactive Poll quite yet, and two of the six computer ranking systems, the Anderson and Hester system and the Peter Wolfe rankings are non-operational. For the time being, we’ve substituted the AP poll for the Harris, and will include the four available computers — Sagarin, Massey, Colley and Billingsley — in the simulation. This early in the season, there’s little need to zero out a computer, it would only cloud the picture of this process.

Simulated BCS Rankings — September 26th

Rank Team BCS Score
1 LSU Tigers .9508
2 Alabama Crimson Tide .9146
3 Oklahoma Sooners .8867
4 Oklahoma State Cowboys .8469
5 Boise State Broncos .8175
6 Nebraska Cornhuskers .7219
7 South Carolina Gamecocks .7017
8 Stanford Cardinal .6679
9 Wisconsin Badgers .6294
10 Virginia Tech Hokies .5941
11 Oregon Ducks .5221
12 Florida Gators .5135
13 Clemson Tigers .5038
14 South Florida Bulls .4193
15 Michigan Wolverines .4029
16 Baylor Bears .3858

Some thoughts:

  • By adding Colley and taking Massey’s BCS column instead of his weighted column, much of the standings have shifted.
  • Stanford takes a tumble all the way to No. 8, while Oklahoma State climbs to No. 4, both on the strength of its victory over Texas A&M and an already strong computer showing.
  • Nebraska and South Carolina get a bunch of help in this week’s simulation, as do South Florida and Clemson.

Simulated BCS Standings Week Three: Oklahoma Newest No. 1

A big victory over Florida State gives Oklahoma just enough to get by Alabama and LSU to take the top spot in this week’s BCS simulation.

Yes, three different weeks, three different BCS No. 1’s. But with more games, the computer rankings begin to smooth out, so this upheaval we’ve seen each week is sure to settle down at least a little moving forward.

Boise State, Stanford and Oklahoma State round out the top six, while Florida State takes a big tumble to No. 15.

Our first Big East team makes an appearance, as West Virginia gets enough overall support for the No. 16 spot this week.

As a point of reference, the methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

For starters, there is no Harris Interactive Poll quite yet, and three of the six computer ranking systems, the Anderson and Hester system and the Peter Wolfe rankings and Colley’s Matrix are either non-operational or have incongruities to the point where their ranking system is not reflective of the season thus far. For the time being, we’ve substituted the AP poll for the Harris, and will include three available computers — Sagarin, Massey and Billingsley — in the simulation. This early in the season, there’s little need to zero out a computer, it would only cloud the picture of this process.

Simulated BCS Rankings — September 12th

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Oklahoma Sooners .9686
2 LSU Tigers .9467
3 Alabama Crimson Tide .9173
4 Boise State Broncos .8448
5 Stanford Cardinal .8090
6 Oklahoma State Cowboys .7638
7 Wisconsin Badgers .7222
8 Nebraska Cornhuskers .6119
9 Oregon Ducks .5859
10 South Carolina Gamecocks .5737
11 Texas A&M Aggies .5541
12 Virginia Tech Hokies .5414
13 Florida Gators .4867
14 Arkansas Razorbacks .4859
15 Florida State Seminoles .4208
16 West Virginia Mountaineers .3815

Some thoughts:

  • A week after being No. 1 in the simulated BCS, Alabama falls hard to No. 3 after a unimpressive (to the computers at least) victory over North Texas.
  • Oklahoma, on the other hand, gets a big computer victory over Florida State. Combine that with already strong support from the human element, and the ingredients were in place for the Sooners to take back the No. 1 spot.
  • Stanford gets a nice bump for their victory over Arizona, entrenching themselves in the No. 5 spot pretty firmly moving forward.

Simulated BCS Standings Week Two: Alabama Jumps LSU to Top Spot

Two weekends in the bag, and we already have a surprise at the top of the (simulated) BCS standings.

Alabama, on the strength of its road victory over Penn State, saw enough gain in support in the computers to jump LSU and Oklahoma to the top spot of this week’s simulated rankings.

LSU slides back a spot to No. 2, although they are not far behind the Crimson Tide. Oklahoma, No. 1 in both human elements, sees a relative lack of support in the computers, and bows at No. 3.

Boise State and Stanford round out the top five as they did last week. Oklahoma State makes a large jump up to No. 6 from No. 8 last week.

As a point of reference, the methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

For starters, there is no Harris Interactive Poll quite yet, and three of the six computer ranking systems, the Anderson and Hester system and the Peter Wolfe rankings and Colley’s Matrix are either non-operational or have incongruities to the point where their ranking system is not reflective of the season thus far. For the time being, we’ve substituted the AP poll for the Harris, and will include three available computers — Sagarin, Massey and Billingsley — in the simulation. This early in the season, there’s little need to zero out a computer, it would only cloud the picture of this process.

Simulated BCS Rankings — September 12th

Rank Team BCS Score
1 Alabama Crimson Tide .9502
2 LSU Tigers .9492
3 Oklahoma Sooners .9330
4 Boise State Broncos .8452
5 Stanford Cardinal .7257
6 Oklahoma State Cowboys .7120
7 Florida State Seminoles .6146
8 Oregon Ducks .6032
9 Wisconsin Badgers .5914
10 Virginia Tech Hokies .5569
11 South Carolina Gamecocks .5568
12 Texas A&M Aggies .5380
13 Nebraska Cornhuskers .5199
14 Arkansas Razorbacks .4949
15 Ohio State Buckeyes .4703
16 Auburn Tigers .4177

Some thoughts:

  • Alabama’s climb is nearly all attributable to the computer rankings. LSU did not see a fall in support, only Alabama claiming some of the vacated space by teams like Stanford and Boise State, who lost ground in both components.
  • Oklahoma State is already strong in the computers, but a victory over Texas A&M in two weekends would only improve those rankings.
  • The bottom half of the top 16 is pretty stagnant, but a more smooth distribution of the computer rankings gives almost all of the teams a bump in BCS Score, even if their rankings did not improve.

Simulated BCS Standings Week One: LSU Claims Top Spot

With no way to fully immerse ourselves in BCS rankings until well into October, what could be better than a slate of simulated BCS rankings after just one week of college football action?

The methodology of the BCS Know How simulated rankings is slightly different than normal BCS procedure — mainly because of a lack of full-scale components.

For starters, there is no Harris Interactive Poll quite yet, and two of the six computer ranking systems, the Anderson and Hester system and the Peter Wolfe rankings, are not operational while Colley’s Matrix has been slow to update. For the time being, we’ve substituted the AP poll for the Harris, and will include the three available computers — Sagarin, Massey and Billingsley — in the simulation. This early in the season, there’s little need to zero out a computer, it would only cloud the picture of this process.

A few early surprises include LSU taking the top spot away from Oklahoma and Alabama on the strength of their computer rankings, as well as the already strong showing from Boise State.

Oregon takes a hard tumble after its loss to the Tigers, while their Pac-12 counterparts Stanford stand strong at No. 5.

A few weeks still separate us from the first Harris Poll and the first BCS rankings, but until then, feel free to stay updated with our simulated BCS rankings every week until the actual BCS rankings are released.

Simulated BCS Rankings — September 6th

Rank Team BCS Score
1 LSU Tigers .9520
2 Oklahoma Sooners .9348
3 Alabama Crimson Tide .9211
4 Boise State Broncos .8727
5 Stanford Cardinal .7720
6 Florida State Seminoles .6787
7 Wisconsin Badgers .6502
8 Oklahoma State Cowboys .6081
9 Virginia Tech Hokies .6053
10 Oregon Ducks .5895
11 Ohio State Buckeyes .5653
12 Texas A&M Aggies .5438
13 Arkansas Raqzorbacks .5358
14 Nebraska Cornhuskers .4961
15 South Carolina Gamecocks .4853
16 Auburn Tigers .3212

Some thoughts:

  • LSU, Oklahoma and Alabama already place themselves way ahead of the rest of the field, already a good sign for these preseason favorites.
  • Boise State is all alone in the .8000 range, positioned well for a chase at the title moving forward this season. Stanford also seems entrenched in the No. 5 spot for now.
  • After the Cardinal, however, there are plenty of teams all bunched together. Don’t be surprised if next week’s rankings look quite different.
  • If Colley does release this week, I will update these rankings.