Friday, November 23, 2007

Mountaineers and Buckeyes??

Just when you thought the National Title Game picture couldn't get any does. With LSU and ASU falling, the door is wide open for those two coveted slots. Tomorrow, Kansas or Missouri will have their hopes smashed after the big showdown at Arrowhead. However, when all the dust settles at the beginning of December, who will be on top? Right now, it's anyone's guess. The possibilities are endless. Here are some odds (given in the order of the current BCS Standings) on who will be playing in New Orleans in January.

LSU (35-1): LSU pretty much blew their chance at playing for the title in their own backyard when they fell to Arkansas. However, there is still a remote chance that they will be playing for the title. I think it's safe to say Ohio State will get a bid over them but they basically need a lot of sympathy from the voters and for Kansas, Missouri, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia to lose and to win the SEC title. Kansas or Missou has to lose and the winner could very well lose to OU. They might get lucky and stay over VT in the polls, primarily because they're crushed them earlier this year but if not, they still have to beat UVA and BC again. If Tennessee loses @UK tomorrow, LSU will take on Georgia for the SEC. If UT wins, then Georgia (currently sitting at #7 in the BCS) could remain ahead of LSU if they don't have to face them. Pretty much, LSU wants to face Georgia to assure themselves a spot ahead of them. WVU has to beat UConn and Pitt. Shouldn't be too difficult but I really think the jury is still out on UConn and anything can happen in the Backyard Brawl. Again, they're in big trouble but all hope is not lost.

Kansas (10-1): Kansas has played damn well this year. Unfortunately, they haven't played damn well against a top tier team yet because they haven't faced any. They control their own destiny but have to get through Missouri and Oklahoma to reach their goal. Can they do it? Probably. Will they? Not so sure.

West Virginia (2-1): I give the Mountaineers pretty good odds to reach the title game. They finish out the season at home against UConn and Pitt, which is certainly a good thing. While those two games aren't pushovers by any stretch, I don't see them losing either of them. They're just too good and have played solid football since losing at South Florida. Their last two games have been relatively close calls but I think it's slightly safe to say that games against UL and @Cincy are a bit more rough than home dates with the Huskies and Panthers.

Missouri (12-1): Their odds are a little bit worse than Kansas' because they've already lost to Oklahoma (so I know for sure OU can beat them). Either way, like Kansas, they control their own destiny and land in New Orleans with wins over the Jayhawks and Sooners in the last two weeks of the season.

Ohio State (4-1): If we've learned anything this college football season, it's that you're the safest when you don't play. Ohio State has the luxury of sitting back and waiting to see if everyone ahead of them screws up. LSU and Kansas or Missouri are going to fall behind them in the BCS Standings this week, virtually assuring them of the #3 spot behind WVU (assuming they win) and the winner of Kansas v. Missouri. The way I see it, OSU needs 1 of 3 things to happen to make it to New Orleans.

1-Oklahoma to win the Big 12
2-WVU to lose to UConn
3-WVU to lose to Pitt

If any of those three things happen, I really don't see another team beating them out for a slot in the National Title Game.

Arizona State (1000-1): Losing to USC effectively took them out of the race. It's a shame too because a win over the Trojans could have possibly pushed them over the Buckeyes and into 3rd place in the BCS.

Georgia (50-1): Somewhat of a dark horse in this race. If Kansas, Missouri and West Virginia all lose, Georgia could find their way into the title game. A win over LSU in the SEC Title game would give them a lot of props, though they need UT to lose tomorrow for that matchup to happen. There's even the outside chance that staying out of the SEC title game could help them, especially if UT beats LSU. I'm sure they'd like to be able to make it to New Orleans without having to go through LSU but it might be what it takes.

Virginia Tech (40-1): There's no telling how the computers will react to wins over Virginia and BC. The computers have BC as a top 10 team and UVA on the outside, looking in. If the Hokies can beat them, and have WVU, KU, and Missou all fall, there's no telling what might happen. It's pretty much a toss up as to where they will stand relative to LSU this week but that will be made more clear come Sunday. If LSU falls in the SEC Title game, then they're obviously out of the picture anyway.

Rest of Field (80-1): Crazier things have happened this year. I mean heck, USF used to have the #2 BCS spot. Either way, the field pretty much consists of Oklahoma, Oregon and USC. All three of those teams basically need every team currently ahead of them in the BCS standings (outside of OSU) to lose. Highly unlikely, but it could still happen.

With all that being said, I would currently put my money on a WVU v. OSU national title game. I really don't see Oklahoma losing the Big 12 and WVU should definitely win out. Sure, I'm biased because they're the two conferences that I follow the most but still, I would really like to see that game. You never see any good Big East v. Big Ten matchups in football and that would be one heck of a game. One way or the other, nothing in college football is even certain. For all I know Hawaii could end up in the title game...

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