It's all about pecking orders at this point. Where does your team rate against its peers. Some teams get a bump because of name brands and history. Some teams are only chosen because they have to be. In the Big Ten, the order tends to work itself on merit most years. The new wrinkle this year will be the B1G Championship loser.
It will be a very unusual year that will see the Championship Game loser get to the BCS. Look to the SEC and (old) Big 12 as a guide. You're in a better position finishing with 1 or 2 losses and being runner up in a division than losing the Title game. Whether it's Wisconsin or Michigan State, I expect that the loser will not go to the BCS. I also expect that they'll get passed over for the Capital One Bowl. Get used to seeing the Title Game loser in the Outback Bowl. This won't be the last time that happens.
As for the projections, let's remember that there are rules:
- The best teams don't always go to the best games. In the end, butts in the seat and eyes to the television are the biggest factors.
- The order of BCS selection is 1) Replacement for #1 Team; 2) Replacement for #2 Team; 3) Fiesta Bowl; 4) Sugar Bowl; 5) Orange Bowl.
- Until a team is officially bowl banned, we assume that they can and will go. So, no USC. And now, no Miami. Ohio State, Oregon, North Carolina...you're in consideration until otherwise notified.
- If a Big Ten or Pac-10 team qualifies for the BCS Championship Game, the Rose Bowl will NOT be required to take a non-automatic qualifier. This was only required of the Rose Bowl the first time (2010 season) it occurred over the current four-year contract.
- The Insight Bowl picks its Big Ten team ahead of the Gator Bowl this year. It will rotate the other way next year.
Got it? Good. Let's get on to the projections.
|Can anyone give LSU a better game than Alabama? Arkansas is a really good football team. I think that they're dead even with Oklahoma State. They can't stay within 24 points of these teams. I hate the idea of a rematch, but if you want the best two teams, here they are.|
|Rose Bowl is happy. It gets its conference anchors and the two teams that are generally acknowledged to be the best in each league.|
|I still think OU wins Bedlam. Regardless, the Big 12 will get only one BCS bid and is almost certain to face Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl.|
I'm just going to post this link about Michigan. They're still a flawed team, but they've also managed to get themselves to 10 wins and a BCS berth. That's impressive. And yes, I expect to see the Wolverines at about 13 or 14 in the standings when all is said and done next week.
Houston needs to beat Southern MIss in the C-USA championship to get here. I think they will.
Now that no one believes in Clemson again, aren't they at their most dangerous? Still, I'll take VT for their seemingly annual trip to Miami.
When UConn beats Cincinnati this weekend, that means that Louisville will get the Big East's automatic bid and become the first BCS team to have lost to a Sun Belt team. Viva Big East!
|You could see Sparty, Arkansas, or Georgia here, but I'm betting that the CapOne picks two teams who have never been to the bowl before.|
|Win 10 games, lose your title game, go to the Outback Bowl.|
Late at night. Out of sight. That's where Jim Delany wants the Nittany Lions, right?
I think that you'll see next week's winner of Baylor/Texas here.
I think the B1G representative is entirely dependent upon who the Chick-Fil-A picks from the SEC (see below). If the Gator is left with Florida, it'll take Ohio State. If it has Auburn, it'll take Iowa.
[EDIT: The Gator Bowl President has now come out and said that he wants OSU-UF. The only question remains whether he'll have the chance. Safer money is probably on Auburn-Clemson in the Chick-Fil-A, OSU-UF here, and Iowa-aTm in the Texas Bowl]
It has now been over 700 days since Ohio State's last recorded victory over Michigan.
You could see Missouri or Iowa State here, but I'm betting that Texas A&M gets picked to get more fans in the stadium.
|Both these teams cliched bowls with their wins on Saturday. C-USA would like to send a West Division team here, but they won't have one available by this selection.|
|Northwestern or Illinois? Expect the Cats to be picked as Illinois figures out its coaching mess.|
When Miami announced that they were banning themselves from a bowl this year, it meant that the ACC had no chance of serving as the backup for Army (which couldn't get to six wins this year). That opens the door for the Big Ten to match up with
And when UCLA was pushed into the Pac-12 championship game as a sacrificial lamb to Oregon, that ensured that they'll finish 6-7 and that the Pac-12 won't fill this slot. Welcome Big 12 extra Iowa State.
When you can't get to six wins, you find yourself On the Couch with the Queso Bowl.
Call it a hunch, but I don't think that we'll see the Gophers here next year. Indiana? Yeah. They'll be back.