Sunday, November 23, 2008

BCS predictions: Big XII South

Before I step out the door to get to Texas Stadium, I wanted to sling around some BCS predictions. The latest results will be in by the time I get back, so we can then all laugh at just how wrong I was. After Saturday night's blow out in Norman, the Sooners have created a mess atop the BCS. Here's how I believe things will shake out at the top today:

1. Alabama
2. Oklahoma
3. Florida
4. Texas
5. Texas Tech
6. USC
7. Utah

How to determine who gets the nod between Texas, Texas Tech, OU in the Big XII South:

In the head to head, they are all 1-1 with Tech beating Texas, Texas beating OU and OU beating Tech. Round and round we go. So, factors:

OU lost on a neutral field by 10 points in mid-October. And I've been to the UT-OU games before, and YES they are legitimately played on a neutral field. Save it. Oklahoma just beat the nation's #2 team, 327-21 (approximate score). OU's non-conference schedule might be weak (Chattanooga, Cincinnati, @Washington, No. 24 TCU), but when you have to play so many top teams all within your conference, I could ordinarily overlook that. Now, because it's come down to this tie, we'll have to see how the other non-conference opponents of Texas and Tech stack up.

Texas lost to Tech the first weekend of November on essentially the final play of the game on the road. Non-conference schedule included Florida Atlantic, @UTEP, Arkansas and Rice. Only one game left, at home against Texas A&M. Watch for UT to try to hang 100 on the Aggies to impress voters.

Texas Tech didn't do itself any favors losing the way they did. Yes it was on the road where Bob Stoops is virtually unbeatable in Norman (only lost there twice ever). Was a darling Cinderella this season, but carriage is once again a pumpkin after getting demolished 42-7 ... in the first half. Non-conference schedule includes: Eastern Washington, @Nevada, SMU, Massachusetts. Uh oh. That won't help.

Of these three, Texas should probably be the highest ranked of them all based on all that evidence, but considering that OU's loss was the least recent, OU just destroyed Tech by an embarrassing margin, and that Texas was off this week, the Sooners will easily jump them. Late season losses are always more devastating than early-season struggles, and that favors the Sooners.

The BCS will be the deciding factor of which of these three teams plays in the Big XII championship game. Frankly, I think that is a horrible tie-breaker (prepare for a lot of public outrage after the standings are released and two schools begin the "flawed system" arguments), but it's the only tie-breaker they have, so it'll have to do.

Wreck 'em?
Hook 'em?
Not likely.

Boomer Sooner lives.

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