Written by: Warren Schorr
In the final year of the BCS with four weeks left in the season the National Championship picture is kind of murky. There are six undefeated teams left in the Football Bowl Subdivision. With four of those teams having a chance to play for a national championship.
Alabama holding down the top spot in the BCS rankings, at number two is Florida State behind red-shirt freshman sensation Jameis Winston. At three is Ohio State who, under Urban Meyer, has yet to lose a game and have a winning streak on 21 games. One loss Stanford is at four and Baylor who is currently having their best season in school history is at five.
Let’s take a look at the credentials of the top 5 teams in the BCS.
The Crimson Tide looked poised to play for their third straight national title. Bama has been ranked number one the entire year based off of previous success, which is understandable, but for playing in the SEC they have only beaten three ranked teams and one of those teams is Ole Miss who is currently unranked.
Barring a hiccup in their final two road games against unranked Mississippi State and #7 Auburn, Alabama will again win the SEC West and play in the SEC Championship game against either Missouri or South Carolina for their right to play for that crystal ball.
If Alabama loses the in the SEC Championship game and Florida State and Ohio State are undefeated I find it hard to believe that they will be playing in the title game but crazier things have happened so you never know.
So all Alabama has to do is win out and they will find themselves in Pasadena on January 6th playing for the title.
Behind Heisman front-runner Jameis Winston, Florida State has risen back to national prominence and has yet to suffer a typical
Florida State loss this year.
The Seminoles to go along with Famous Jameis have one of the best defenses in the nation and their wins against ranked teams have been dominant. They destroyed Maryland who was #25 at the time, 63-0, but since then Maryland has been in a tailspin down the ACC standings.
The 63-0 beat down isn’t their most impressive win on the year that is when
they dominated, at the time, #5 Clemson in Death Valley in all phases of the
game for 60 minutes and won 51-14. That’s is probably the best win for any of the teams in the Top 5 at the moment.
FSU also beat arch rival Miami, ranked #7 at the time, but that win doesn’t look as good since Miami hasn’t won a game since. Their final three games are much easier than with Idaho, Syracuse and Florida then a date with what looks like Georgia Tech in the ACC Championship game. If Jimbo Fisher’s Seminoles win out they will have a date with Alabama for the title.
Now we get to the most scrutinized and hated team in all of college football, the Buckeyes.
It is well documented that Ohio State’s schedule is not the strongest as they have only beaten two ranked teams, Northwestern and Wisconsin, and Northwestern hasn’t won a game since Ohio State beat them.
The only saving grace for Ohio State is that they would play Michigan State in the Big Ten Championship who currently fields the best defense in the nation. In Ohio State’s defense they can only play who is on their schedule and it is not their fault that the rest of the Big Ten cannot get their act straight. The only thing that Ohio State has to do is win out very convincingly against bad Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan teams.
Even if Ohio State has another undefeated regular season they need a loss from either Florida State and/or Bama to play in the title game. But even then, the national writers have the perception that they don’t play well in bowls games which lately has been false as they’ve won their last 2 BCS games against Oregon and Arkansas. The writers may pick a one-loss Stanford of even an undefeated Baylor squad.
If that happens we can only imagine what will happen in the streets of Columbus and it will not be pretty. SO if you are a Buckeyes fan root for FSU and Bama and dominating wins in the final four games.
Behind Art Briles high-flying offense Baylor has found themselves ranked in the top 5 and on the outside looking in for playing for a national title.
If you think Ohio State’s schedule is weak, take a look at the Bears’. It’s even weaker than Ohio State’s as Baylor’s only win against a ranked team was last Thursday against Oklahoma who was ranked 10. This isn’t very good. Baylor does have the more difficult part of their schedule coming up with their last four games with games against ranked opponents Oklahoma State and Texas. While this season for bears fans is a season of dreams its going to be hard for them to find their themselves in the national championship game.
They are going to need major help with losses from Ohio State, Alabama and Florida State. If Baylor can continue to score upwards of 70 points and beat teams but 40+ they might have a chance.
Baylor fans need to do some praying if they are going to find themselves in Pasadena.
The Cardinal are coming off a huge win against Oregon last Thursday night on the farm.
While Stanford is ranked ahead of Baylor in the BCS, they do have pretty big blemish on their resume a loss to a four-loss Utah team that is going to be hard to overcome. If the Cardinal continue to win out they will have an interesting case to play in the title game, but with that loss it’s going to be hard for them to jump the three teams ahead of them.
Stanford is likely to play in the PAC-12 Championship Game and get a solid UCLA team. It will be interesting to see where the voters put Stanford in the polls the rest of the season. I think Stanford has a better chance of getting in the title game than Baylor just based on name recognition, which could be unfair, but then again I have always been told life is not fair.
We just looked at the top college teams to play in the final edition of the BCS National Championship game. Alabama and Florida State are in the driver’s seat but if they slip up, Ohio State, Stanford and Baylor are ready to pounce.
Crazier things have happened in the BCS so maybe Oregon, Auburn and Clemson aren’t out of it but they are going to need major miracles. Buckle up because this is going to be one wild ride down the stretch.