The BCS is confusing and thankfully this is college football’s last year to deal with its poll driven chaos. Teams go up and down every week leaving fans wondering what and why. I have taken the latest updates and made sense of the Bowl tie-ins and rules. I do this to give the public the HOF’s comprehensive forecast of what really matters, the BCS Bowl Games.
BIG-10/PAC-12 – Rose Bowl
BIG 12- Fiesta Bowl
SEC- Sugar Bowl
ACC- Orange Bowl
-The top two teams in the BCS Rankings play for the National Championship
– Conference champions of the AAC, ACC, BIG-10, BIG 12, PAC-12, and SEC will have automatic berths in to one of the BCS bowl games
-A conference is limited to two teams in BCS bowl games
-An automatic qualifying conference team must have at least 9 wins and have finished in the top 14 to get an At- Large bid
– An non-automatic qualifying conference team must finish in the Top-12 or Top-16 and ahead of at least one automatic qualifying conference champion
The BCS Bowl Games’ Picking Order for 2014
1. Orange Bowl
2. Sugar Bowl
3. Fiesta Bowl
* Rose Bowl has two conference champions tied into its bowl game
Oregon (PAC-12 Champion) 12-1 vs. Ohio State (BIG 10 Champion) 13-0
Stanford losing to USC puts Oregon back in the driver seat for a conference championship and a berth into the Rose Bowl. The Quack Attack will take their game to Los Angeles to play the Buckeyes. A game against an undefeated opponent should perk the Ducks up enough to avoid a consolation game let down.
Ohio State will go undefeated in a down BIG-10 and will be penalized for its conference being weak. Folks up north will argue the merits of Florida State in the ACC but unlike the Seminoles, Ohio State hasn’t dominated its opponents like it should. The lack of style points sends the Buckeyes to the Rose Bowl and not the real “big game”.
Clemson (ACC At-Large) 11-1 vs. Stanford (PAC-12 At Large) 10-2
With Florida State going to the big dance, the Orange bowl is left to take the ACC’s next best team in Clemson. The Tigers are a good but not great team. Senior QB Tajh Boyd will try to will his team to another exciting bowl win as a cap to his college career.
Stanford stubbed its toe against Utah and USC. Those loses knock them from a National and Conference Championship. They almost slide out of the BCS, but they will be selected over a 2-loss Michigan State team that will have freshly lost to Ohio State in the Big-10 Championship game.
Missouri (SEC At-Large) 11-2 vs. Central Florida (AAC Champion) 11-1
MIZ-SEC! Mizzou will make the SEC championship game in its second year in the nation’s toughest conference. The Tigers should give Alabama a tough game in Atlanta with a nasty defensive line and the nation’s best wide receiving core. However, it won’t be enough to stop the Tide’s roll. Mizzou finds themselves in the Sugar Bowl while Alabama goes for a 3rd straight National Championship.
Central Florida builds off a solid season last year and finds themselves champions of the newly formed AAC. They knocked off the AAC pre-season favorite Louisville in Kentucky and earned the right to represent their conference in New Orleans. They lost to Mizzou at home last year and will want revenge down in the Bayou.
Baylor (BIG 12 Champion) 12-0 vs. Fresno State (Mountain West Champion/At-Large) 12-0
Baylor’s high flying offense is not an aberration it’s a trend. The Bears throw up points in bunches and take their talents to the Arizona desert as champions of the BIG-12. Hesiman candidate Bryce Petty will do something RGIII didn’t, and that’s win Baylor a conference championship and take the Bears to a BCS game.
Fresno State will finish ahead of Central Florida in the BCS Rankings and become this year’s BCS buster. The Bulldogs also have a high powered offense that should make for a 45-35 offensive shootout in Phoenix.
BCS National Championship Game
Alabama (SEC Champion) 13-0 vs. Florida State (ACC Champion) 13-0
Alabama is Alabama. Really there’s nothing else to say. Nick Saban will become the best college football coach ever by the time his career is over win or lose this game.
Florida State needs ‘Famous’ Jameis Winston to continue to play like a Hesiman winner to beat Alabama. They will go the whole season without facing elite level competition but should take comfort in knowing they beat down every bad to mid level team like a great team should.