Saturday, November 8, 2008

Final college football open thread

Considering that this blog will be going on hiatus in the next couple of days, this will be the last college-football open thread of the season. That's the one thing I regret about the timing of my blog shutdown: I won't be able to talk about all the BCS drama here during the final weeks of the season. But, as Becky says, there's always something. If it's not the election, it's college football, or it's college basketball, or it's the inauguration, or it's... etc., etc.

But anyway, Week 11 is underway. Most surprising score so far: Tennessee is losing at Neyland Stadium, on homecoming, to Wyoming. WTF? I know the Vols are bad, but jeez. I guess it just proves that the Mountain West is a war!

Coming up next: #3 Penn State at Iowa. A win by the Hawkeyes would be very, very helpful to the cause of all the one-loss teams (including USC, though I don't think the Trojans have much of a chance at this point, given how things are shaking out in the SEC and Big 12).

Later: Notre Dame at Boston College and #21 Cal at #7 USC, both at 8:00 PM. Alas, we don't actually be able to watch the 'SC game here in Denver; we get #9 Oklahoma State at #2 Texas Tech instead. Harumph!



UPDATE: With Iowa's win over Penn State, it now looks awfully likely that the BCS title game will pit the SEC champion vs. the Big 12 champion. Florida and Alabama are all set for the SEC title game, and barring any upsets in their remaining games (Florida vs. South Carolina, vs. The Citadel, and at Florida State; Alabama vs. Mississippi State and vs. Auburn), that will essentially be a BCS play-in game. Best-case scenario for USC: Florida loses to FSU, then beats Alabama the next week, leaving the SEC without a title contender.

Outside of that, USC's best hope is for the Big 12 North champ to pull an upset in that conference's championship game, thus potentially opening up a spot in the BCS title game for the Trojans. Even then, though, it's conceivable that a one-loss Big 12 South runner-up could sneak into the title game ahead of 'SC -- particularly if it's Texas, whom the computers adore. Last but not least, there's undefeated Utah, which I still think has a serious case vs. USC, if it comes to that. But it probably won't. If USC wins out, and if Penn State can beat Indiana next week and Michigan State in its finale, and if Oregon State loses at some point, I'm thinking we're looking at a Trojans-Nittany Lions Rose Bowl. (If Oregon State wins out, then USC probably ends up in the Fiesta Bowl, or perhaps the Sugar Bowl.)