So, we have reached the end of Rivalry Weekend in college football (now, I'd like to find the lucky person who's job it is to nickname every week of the college football for the Disney family of networks, and steal his job). And, very unlike last year, there was no pandemonium this year. Actually, quite the opposite. Today seemed to really clear up the BCS picture for us. Hear's what we learned:
1. Thank God, We're Gonna Have a Watchable Rose Bowl: Yes, after going on an inmprobable run to become within one win of reaching the Rose Bowl, Oregon State lost to Oregon today in the Civil War, clinching the Pac-10 title for USC. And so we will not have to see a rematch of the 45-14 stinker back on September 6 against Penn State. The Rose Bowl now becomes the first bowl with a pretty much set matchup (barring an implosion by USC next week against UCLA): USC vs. Penn State, which already is looking like a ratings gem. Face it, USC is a better team than Oregon State, and we now have what we want to see. Praise the Lord.
2. The Big 12 is Starting to Settle Out: After so much hype of a Big 12 upset this week, the Big 3 teams all came through. Texas destroyed Texas A&M, Oklahoma won a shootout vs. Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech was nearly upset by lowly Baylor. But in the end, the finish we wanted came: Oklahoma has done enough to merit a jump over Texas into the Big 12 Title Game. But that Missouri loss to Kansas (who, face it, may be the best 7-5 team in years) takes some of the luster off the Title Game, but its basically a home game for Mizzou, so watch for the upset.
3. The BCS Picture is Much Clearer: I think it is now safe to say the following:
- With their wins Saturday, we know that the winner of the Alabama-Florida game will play in the Title Game, the loser will play in the Sugar Bowl.
- If Texas wins on Saturday vs. Mizzou, then they will play the SEC champ in the title game and Oklahoma will get a BCS berth, probably the Fiesta Bowl, and Texas Tech will be shut out. If Texas loses, then Oklahoma goes to the Title Game, and Texas Tech goes to the BCS, probably the Fiesta Bowl, and Texas will have to settle for the Cotton Bowl.
- Unfortunately, the winner of the Virginia Tech-Boston College game will go to the Orange Bowl, and we'll no doubt get destroyed by a team from a real conference, like the Big 10 or Mountain West.
- Cincinnati is going to a BCS bowl, backing into that Big East title.
- USC is playing Penn State in the Rose Bowl.
- Utah and Ohio State will receive the other two at-large bids. I just don't see a BCS Bowl picking Boise State over the Buckeyes.
That's a lot better, ain't it?
So, that's what we've learned this weekend. I've also learned I can eat a lot of turkey and stuffing. But you don't need to hear that story. So here are my bowl projections. Enjoy.
Boston College vs. Utah
Penn State vs. USC
Oklahoma vs. Ohio State
BCS Title Game:
Oklahoma vs. Florida
Well, I'll see you next week. Enjoy your leftovers.