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Will the BCS ditch the Big East


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This looks like the only other way other than a loss by OU or SC

BCS can fix Big East disaster

Pete Fiutak / CollegeFootballNews.com

Posted: 48 minutes ago

How the BCS ditch Pitt, which undefeated teams should be left out of the Orange Bowl and a look back at Week 14.

2004: The year of the zzzzzzzzzzzz

It doesn't look like the final week of the season will test the top teams.

Every college football game is beautiful in its own way, but there's a reason why all of the talk is about the USC-Oklahoma-Auburn debate: the games haven't been all that great. Of course there have been many notable exceptions with Michigan-Michigan State, LSU-Auburn, and Cal-USC about as good as it gets, but the overall level of play has been a bit down this year and the games and conference races have been, well, dry. The Big XII North, Big East, and in the end, the Big Ten, were about which team stunk the least, while the Big XII South, SEC divisions, Conference USA, Mountain West, Pac 10, Sun Belt and WAC were pretty much decided weeks ago. The MAC has had its charm thanks to Toledo and Akron, but it's hard to get too many college football fans fired up for it.

So what's missing? Mainly, there has to be at least a little bit more fear put into the top teams. Watching them play has been a bit like seeing a scary movie; you know everything is going to be fine in the end. Credit the top teams with always being up to the various challenges, but it doesn't always make for gripping theater. Boise State has been pushed at times and Louisville had issues with Memphis and played a classic against Miami, but watching those two week in and week out is like watching someone play a video game. After being impressed by Utah's sheer precision, Ute games are only fun for Ute fans. Worse yet, there's little to get excited about with the championship games. Let's hope those turn out to be more fun than they appear to be on paper, and let's hope the bowls make up for a mediocre regular season.

The Big East's non-automatic, automatic bid

Pitt needed overtime to beat Furman earlier this season.

There might be a great chance for the BCS powers-that-be to do the right thing and prove to the sports world that its system isn't a complete joke. Everyone is in agreement that the Big East champion doesn't deserve to watch any BCS games much less play in one, but there's that silly automatic bid that's supposed to go the league winner. Not quite. This comes directly from the BCS rule book ...

"The conferences whose champions have a guaranteed annual berth in one of the BCS bowls are subject to review and possible loss of that guaranteed annual berth should the conference champion not have an average ranking of 12 of higher over a four-year period."

Miami finished first in the BCS in 2001 and 2002 and ninth in 2003. Pittsburgh is currently 44th. That averages out to 13.75. To be 12th or higher over the four-year span, Pittsburgh (or the champion) will have to finish 37th in the BCS. There's a better chance of Oklahoma and Auburn fans respecting USC's Pac-10 schedule than there is of the Big East champ getting hosed out of the big payday, but if the average really is worse than 12th, the BCS should politely say thanks, but no thanks to the Big East and put Texas in. No one, not even Big East fans, could complain.

Someone has to miss out

Auburn would love a playoff system in place this year.

The USC-Oklahoma-Auburn debate is an all-time doozy and worthy of all the analysis and scrutiny, but it's an easy copout to keep blaming the system because no system would work. There's no playoff. That's the deal and that's going to be the deal. It wouldn't matter how you tweaked, cajoled, manipulated or changed up the system, there would still be three unbeaten teams for two national title spots, and there would still be two teams (Utah and Boise State) that ran the table with dominant enough teams to suggest that they should be included. All the weeping and gnashing of teeth over Texas getting hosed really isn't that big a deal (other than to the Big XII's wallet) since the non-national title BCS games are glorified exhibitions. They're a big deal to the Utahs and Boise States of the world since getting in means they beat the establishment, but that's all. The real concern is over the national title game and how to decide who the two best teams are. Someone is going to miss out and nothing short of a playoff will change that. Everyone involved should simply make their call (which they've already done by keeping USC a rock-solid No. 1), have an informed opinion on Oklahoma and Auburn, and then go from there. Whatever happens, it's going to be ugly. That's why strength of schedule MUST be brought back into the mix. Therefore ...

So how to do the top teams really rank?

(The CFN Championship Formula, part two)

So which two teams actually deserve to play for the national championship and which teams deserve to be put in the BCS? Here's another look at the CFN Championship Formula (which is the same used for ranking all-time teams) looking only at what teams did on the field in a completely objective way. Wins don't lie.

After coming out with this a few weeks ago there have been plenty of thoughts and suggestions from the readers on how to improve it. Essentially, if you won a lot of games against teams with good records, you're fine. If you didn't play that many great teams, you get penalized. Taking many of the suggestions into account, here is the revised formula with the components.

Wins minus losses.

Quality Wins. The number of wins over teams that finish with a winning record. An added 0.25 is given to a Quality Win on the road. This doesn't count for wins over D-IAA teams.

Elite Wins. Wins over teams that finish with three losses or fewer. An added 0.25 is given to an Elite Win on the road.

Bad Wins. A win over teams with three wins or fewer. 0.25 is taken away for each of these wins. A win over a D-IAA team automatically counts as a Bad Win.

Bad Loss. A loss to a team with three wins or fewer. An additional 0.25 is tacked on for a Bad Loss at home. A loss to a D-IAA team automatically counts as a Bad Loss.

Elite Loss. A loss to a team with three losses or fewer. ) 0.25 is added to the total score.

Point Differential. Points for minus points against divided by 10.

By projecting the rest of the wins and losses the rest of the way assuming USC, Oklahoma and Auburn win out and Miami beats Virginia Tech and California beats Southern Miss (and using the current point totals) ...

1. USC — Score: 23.86

2. Auburn — Score: 23.57

3. Oklahoma — 22.30

4. Boise State — Score: 18.58

5. Miami — Score: 18.15

6. California — Score: 16.78

T7. Texas — Score: 16.32

T7. Utah — Score 16.32

9. Virginia Tech - Score 15.55

10. Iowa — Score 15.26

Other notables: Louisville 14.84, Georgia 14.09, Michigan 13.67, Pittsburgh 11.36

O.K., so Boise State isn't the fourth best team in America, but this ranking is based on what teams have accomplished on the field. Would the Bronco pass defense be able to handle Cal? No, but that's an opinion and the whole idea is to make it as objective as possible. What's stunning about the Boise State score isn't just how high it is, it's how quickly it could change. A Hawaii win over Michigan State would bump the Boise State Quality Win score up to 4.25, but an Oregon State bowl loss would take one away. The real killer? Elite Wins over Fresno State and on the road against UTEP. If those two lose their bowl games, Boise State loses 2.25 points and would quickly sink. Also interesting to note is how this proves that California hasn't done as much as you might expect. Also interesting to note is how Iowa is so far ahead of Michigan. After the bowls all teams will be ranked 1-117 and will all be broken down by category.

Surprise, disappointment, and best moment

The surprises of the weekend were the performances by Arizona and Syracuse. The Wildcat offense hadn't done anything all season long, and then it exploded on Arizona State in a stunning 34-27 win. More shocking was how Syracuse steamrolled over a strangely lifeless Boston College team in a 43-17 blowout. The disappointment was how Arizona State QB Andrew Walter's career came to an end. The greatest touchdown passer in Pac 10 history got knocked out against Arizona with a separated shoulder and is done for the year. Considering the great career he had, he should've gone out on a high note. The best moment was the pure joy on the Pittsburgh sideline after beating West Virginia. With the turmoil the program has gone through and the rumors of Walt Harris being on double-secret probation, Tyler Palko and the rest of the Panthers came through when they had to and are now a win away from the BCS.


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What would be interesting to see is Syracuse's final BCS ranking if Pitt gacks it against South Florida this weekend...Syracuse would be a 6-5 team playing in a BCS bowl...that would be hilarious if it weren't so darned wrong.

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