I love conference play. Yes, it's nice to see Ohio State face off against a rising Miami squad, or see Penn State face the best that the SEC (and maybe the country) has to offer, but there is something special about seeing traditional opponents bang heads. The same colors facing off against each other that our fathers watched and their fathers watched. It's special.
It's also nice, because it gives us a sense of pecking order in the leagues. We can start making determinations about teams. For instance, this could be a very special year in East Lansing. The way the offense looks, it could also be a very rough one in Happy Valley. There are eight more weeks to nail this down, but some things are looking clearer.
Now remember, these are projections, not "if the season ended today" picks. I'm accounting for what I think will happen in the remaining weeks. Here are the Rules for 2010.
- 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) Sugar Bowl; 4) Orange Bowl; 5) Fiesta Bowl.
- If a Big Ten or Pac-10 team qualifies for the BCS Championship Game, the Rose Bowl will be required to take a non-automatic qualifier. This will only be required of the Rose Bowl the first time it occurs over the next four years.
- The Gator Bowl picks its Big Ten team ahead of the Insight Bowl this year. It will rotate the other way next year.
Got it? Good. Let's get on to the projections.