Projected 2013 BCS Bowls — September 30th
College football can surprise you, whether it be a quarterback throwing for eight touchdowns, or a bowl-ineligible team proving the best squad in an automatically qualifying conference.
|BCS Bowl Projections|
|Title Game||Oregon vs. LSU|
|Rose Bowl||USC vs. Nebraska|
|Sugar Bowl||Alabama vs. Kansas State|
|Orange Bowl||Florida St. vs. Louisville|
|Fiesta Bowl||West Virginia vs. Notre Dame|
|Scroll down for more|
Ohio State — already a thorn in Michigan State’s side — could prove the dealer of fate for the Big Ten’s BCS bowl bid. And the Buckeyes can’t even make the Big Ten Championship Game.
And Geno Smith can certainly hang with the now traditional offensive fireworks of the Big 12. But can the defense step up at all?
Plus, is there any reason to read into slow starts by the three teams everyone believes the trio at the head of the 2012 class, Alabama, LSU and Oregon?
BCS National Championship Game: LSU Tigers (BCS No. 1) vs. Oregon Ducks (BCS No. 2)
Comment: Both were slow out of the gate. But it’s not how you start, of course, it’s how you finish. And Oregon and LSU finished strong to stay unbeaten a weekend longer as the ranks of the undefeated continued to shrink. Could they be the only two remaining undefeated teams come season’s end? If so, they’re headed to the title game.
Rose Bowl: USC Trojans (At-large selection) vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers (Big Ten Champion)
Comment: It’s fascinating that the Big Ten’s best team might be bowl-ineligible Ohio State. A conference that would normally love to have a dominant single team — mostly to angle for a title game berth — instead must fight among itself to find a second-best squad to send the BCS’s way. The line between a group of maybe five teams is razor thin. But Nebraska had the best win of the weekend, so they’ll go here for now.
USC, if able to close the season strong, and even with a loss to Oregon, could easily make their way to Pasadena.
Sugar Bowl: Alabama Crimson Tide (At-large selection) vs. Kansas State Wildcats (At-large selection)
Comment: A simple victory for Alabama and an off week for Kansas State keeps this matchup intact and somewhat ordinary for a bit. But both certainly have slightly higher aspirations than this game. And they’ll both get a chance to prove it as the season goes on.
Orange Bowl: Florida State Seminoles (ACC Champion) vs. Louisville Cardinals (Big East Champion)
Comment: It wasn’t necessarily easy for either Florida State or Louisville to stay undefeated in Week 5, but they both managed to outlast surprisingly tough road foes to do just that. Right now, both look like bankable assets for the BCS in the early part of the season.
Fiesta Bowl: West Virginia Mountaineers (Big 12 Champion) vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (At-large selection)
Comment: While Geno Smith’s stat line might have been the story of West Virginia’s 70-63 victory over Baylor, the game as a whole proved that the Mountaineers are ready and able to hang with all the best offense the conference has to offer. That being said, a defense — even in the Big 12 — to win an AQ conference. Can the Mountaineers’ find one moving forward?
Notre Dame, still aiming for that nine-win, top-14 plateau, was off this week, and has Miami in South Bend next weekend.
←Projected 2013 BCS Bowls — September 23rd