Tuck’s College Football Poll Week 10
The final season of the BCS may end up just fine. But then again, it’s the BCS. It’s driven us nuts for 15 years and never really worked. Yes, there were years when nobody complained about 1-2, but it doesn’t mean the system worked. Things just fell into place in a flawed system.
This year has people shaky. History says things will work themselves out this month, but until that happens, or if it doesn’t happen everyone will cursing that this year isn’t next year. A 4-team playoff could still lead us to major complications, but its worst case scenario is much better than the current one we are facing.
Alabama, FSU, and Oregon are an agreed upon top 3 right now, in some order, and yes, we can debate who is actually the best. The debate that would follow would be about #4. Ohio State and Baylor could both still run the table which would be unprecedented to have the 5 major conferences each with an unbeaten champion. Truth is, if it happened, it would jump-start conversation about expanding the 4-team playoff to 6 or 8 teams. The 5 major conferences don’t want a system where it’s best team could get left out because of voters. That is the ultimate power play.
It would be shame to happen this year however, because as much talk as it would create, the impact wouldn’t be as severe because 3 teams are being left out this year, not just one next year. It could be viewed more as an anomaly.
What is more likely to happen is debating the merits of a one-loss SEC or PAC-12 champion versus an unbeaten champ from another conference. Or a one-loss non-champion against an unbeaten, or one-loss champion.
Are you dizzy yet?
You should be. Best case/worst case scenarios tend to wind up like that.
The shame of it this season not having the playoff is that no matter how the win/loss works out, it would be fun to see 6-8 of these teams duking it out for the final 4 spots, and even better to see them play it out on the field. On one hand, you can be excited that a playoff is coming next season, but on the other, we really look like we need it now, and should have, could have had it years ago.
If the football gods have a sense of humor, we’ll end this season with 4 unbeaten teams and next year with 2 teams.
UNBEATEN COUNT: 7. The Canes are removed.
WINLESS COUNT: 5.
1. Alabama (8-0)
2. FSU (8-0)
3. Oregon (8-0)
4. Stanford (8-1)
5. Ohio State (9-0)
6. Auburn (8-1)
7. Missouri (8-1)
8. Baylor (8-0)
9. Oklahoma (7-1)
10. Clemson (8-1)
11. LSU (7-2)
12. Texas A&M (7-2)
13. Michigan State (8-1)
14. Notre Dame (7-2)
15. Arizona State (6-2)
16. Wisconsin (6-2)
17. Ole Miss (5-3)
18. Miami (7-1)
19. South Carolina (7-2)
20. Michigan (6-2)
21. Oklahoma State (7-1)
22. Texas Tech (7-2)
23. BYU (6-2)
24. Texas (6-2)
25. UCLA (6-2)
– First thing you’ll note: Where are the little guys? No Fresno State. No Northern Illinois. No UCF. No Louisville. No Houston. The thing is, as we move forward, the big schools schedules get better and better, and that is the top thing I am weighing. I am sure the Rebels jump off the page, but jeez, look at what they’ve done this year. Lost competitive games to Alabama, Auburn, and Texas A&M, while beating LSU, Texas, and Vandy. No team in America has been challenged as much while scoring big wins. These smaller schools can climb into my poll by winning, and others losing more perhaps (especially to each other).
– Close calls this week: Arizona, USC, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Georgia. They might be a win or two away from getting in the poll.
– Sometimes head-2-head will put you ahead of a team with less losses, sometimes it won’t. I have the Spartans ahead of the Irish even though they lost to them. Why? Well they just crushed Michigan who also beat Notre Dame. It’s a round-robin, therefore all bets are off. Sparty has one loss, so they lead the way.
– I wish media members would stop saying the Buckeyes are going for style points. Uh, no they weren’t. They are just that much better than Penn State and Purdue. If they were going for style points they’d be putting up 80-90 points, not 56. It wouldn’t matter if they scored that many anyway. Voters aren’t moving down anyone in front of them unless they lose.
– I can only imagine how good the Spartans would be if they had a decent offense. They harassed and hammered Michigan QB Devin Gardner all day.
– I should have said this a week ago, but a commendable job by both Texas and USC for not falling apart when it appeared things were coming undone. Both still with a shot to win their respective conference. Of course, both had the talent to do this so earlier failures still fall on those coaches.
– Miami dared FSU to run the ball, and that’s exactly what they did. They still hit big plays down the field passing the ball too. The Seminoles are very good.
– The saddest part of the night for the Canes was losing Duke Johnson to a broken ankle. He means so much to their offense. Dallas Crawford will fill-in, but it will be on Stephen Morris and his receivers to find more balance in their offense. Miami has to figure it out this weekend, because losing to Virginia Tech at home would likely mean no ACC Title game for the Hurricanes.
– Before the year I picked the Gators to finish 4th in the SEC East and said 5-7 was a worst case scenario for the season. Most either mocked me or called me names. Now, if they don’t beat Vandy, 5-7 is most probable, and 5th, not 4th, in the SEC East is a possibility. Even with a win, 6-6 and 4th place finish should make Will Muschamp and his pedestrian offense uncomfortable.
– What a week coming up. The American, the Big XII, the PAC-12 North, the PAC-12 South, the SEC West, and the ACC Coastal could all potentially be decided or at least wildly swung one direction with pivotal games.
STIFF-ARMING TROPHY RACE
Not much to report here. There are some names not listed that could easily crack the top ten in the coming weeks, but like Vegas, it’s hard to see the actual winner not being on this current list.
1. QB Jameis Winston, FSU
2. QB Marcus Mariota, Oregon
3. QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M
4. QB Bryce Petty, Baylor
5. DE Michael Sam, Missouri
6. WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M
7. QB Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois
8. RB Lache Seastrunk, Baylor
9. QB Derek Carr, Fresno State
10. DE Anthony Barr, UCLA