If we learned one thing last weekend it's this -- it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to worry about BCS-related injustices when the season is barely half over. Just when it looked like an undefeated Stanford team might end up on the outside looking in at the BCS Championship game, two huge upsets made the road to New Orleans a bit more reasonable for the Mighty Card.
The first domino fell as the crowd was filing out of Stanford Stadium on Saturday night. The stadium announcer had been keeping fans apprised of score of the Wisconsin-Michigan State game, and the suddenly knowledgable Stanford crowd cheered dutifully each time as the Spartans held a lead throughout the second half.
As we made our way down the steps and into the night after Stanford's 65-21 drubbing of the Huskies, a cheer went up from those surrounding television screens in the tailgating area, and moments later a muffled announcement from the stadium confirmed Wisconsin's loss. An hour or so later Texas Tech sealed its upset win over Oklahoma, and two previously undefeated teams were suddenly in the Cardinal's rear view mirror.
What havoc might the next few weeks bring? Let's take a look...
#1 LSU and #2 Alabama
LSU (45-10 over Auburn) and Alabama (37-6 over Tennessee) both won easily over the weekend, so both remain solid in the top two spots of this week's poll. As we mentioned last week, however, one of these two will be eliminated two weeks from now when they square off in Tuscaloosa.
#3 Oklahoma State
There's lots of talk about how the Cowboys control their own destiny, but I'm not terribly worried about them. They might end up winning their next four games, but they still have that huge showdown against Oklahoma on December 3rd. Just a few days ago every college expert in the country thought the Sooners were significantly better than Oklahoma State. Even though Oklahoma stumbled against Texas Tech, I still think they're better, and they should bounce OSU out of the championship chase in that final game. Book it.
#4 Boise State
Nothing has changed with the Broncos. They won again on Saturday, but it was a struggle, and it was only Air Force. The computers don't care that they struggled, only that they won, so they still hold a comfortable lead over the Cardinal in those polls. Don't worry, though. That won't last.
I can't wait until I don't have to think about Clemson anymore. The ACC is horrible, and so is Clemson. Even so, they might still finish undefeated. It won't matter.
Here's what you need to know. Stanford is polling fine with the people who have eyes, as they're currently ranked third in the USA Today coaches' poll and fourth (with a first place vote!) in the Harris Poll. With games against USC, Oregon, and Notre Dame, the Cardinal can make up lots of ground with the computers, the only BCS component in which they trail Boise and Clemson. Most BCS experts agree that if Boise State, Clemson, and Stanford all finish undefeated, the Cardinal will finish ahead of the other two. So root for the Card, root for Oklahoma, and book your tickets for New Orleans.