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BCS shakeup

Quarterback Johnny Manziel of the Texas A&M Aggies

Quarterback Johnny Manziel of the Texas A&M Aggies runs downfield while linebacker Adrien Hubbard of the Alabama Crimson Tide pursues him during the game at Bryant-Denny Stadium. (Nov. 10, 2012) (Credit: Getty Images)

The BCS results are in, so its time to start the debate over who should be in the national title game, who shouldn’t and why.

The case for Oregon (10-0): If you just rate the Ducks off the eye test, they are the best team in the country. Oregon has the most explosive offense in country and hasn’t scored fewer than 42 points in any game this season. Now for the but of the conversation. Oregon’s schedule leaves a lot to be desired. Its non-conference slate of Arkansas State, Fresno State and Tennessee Tech was a joke. Sorry to be so harsh, but it really was a joke. The only team Oregon has played that is more than two games over .500 so far was USC (7-3). And they won that game, 62-51. Although the eye test carries a lot of weight, a ridiculously weak schedule can take away from it. Oregon ends its season with a home game against Stanford and the Civil War game at Oregon State. If they can run the table, a berth in the BCS title game will happen.

The case for Kansas State (10-0): The Wildcats have traditionally scheduled down in their non-conference schedule. This season was no different as they played Missouri State, Miami (FL) and North Texas. Ok, Miami isn’t exactly a cream puff, but they aren’t the Hurricanes of the 1980s and early 1990s. The non-conference schedule not withstanding, Kansas State has some seriously impressive wins. They won at Oklahoma and West Virginia and knocked off Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and TCU in consecutive weeks. Before anyone gripes about the West Virginia win the Mountaineers were 5-1 heading into that game. The Wildcats are far from out of the woods, however, as games against Baylor and Texas loom. If Kansas State can survive that, the berth in the BCS title game awaits.

The case for Notre Dame (10-0): It’s always been a love-hate relationship between the viewing public and Notre Dame. You either love or hate the program. The haters believe Notre Dame always gets the benefit of the doubt from the poll voters. This time the love Notre Dame gets from the voters is legit. The Irish have played a tough schedule. Sure, Michigan State isn’t as good as we thought, but Notre Dame’s wins over Michigan, Stanford and Oklahoma were impressive. The win over the Sooners (30-13) was especially big, considering it was on the road. Of the top four BCS teams, an argument can be made that the Irish have had the toughest road. If they run the table, which will mean season-ending wins over Wake Forest and USC, Notre Dame fans have every reason to believe that their team should be in the BSC championship game.

The case for Alabama (9-1): The Crimson Tide’s national title hopes took a huge hit after losing to Texas A&M. Aside from the fact that they have one loss, the three teams ahead of them are undefeated and don’t play each other. It’s conceivable that all three teams could finish the regular season 12-0. If that’s the case, Alabama will have to settle for a bid to one of the other BCS games. Some have already begun to argue that Alabama should be in the title game regardless of who finishes undefeated. Here’s why that argument carries no weight: The schedule. Yes, the schedule. Alabama’s first seven games were against Michigan, Western Kentucky, Arkansas, Florida Atlantic, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. Their combined record is 36-34. Recent wins over Mississippi State and at LSU were certainly respectable, but the rest of their schedule leaves a little to be desired. Combine that with the loss to Texas A&M and Alabama should be on the outside looking in of the national championship game.

BSC STANDINGS

1. KansasState(10-0) .9674

2. Oregon(10-0) .9497

3. Notre Dame (10-0) .9396

4. Alabama(9-1) .8534

5. Georgia(9-1) .8328

6. Florida(9-1) .7955

7. LSU (8-2) .7331

8. TexasA&M (8-2) .6621

9. South Carolina(8-2) .6349

10. FloridaState(9-1) .6071

11. Clemson (9-1) .5921

12. Oklahoma(7-2) .5797

13. Stanford (8-2) .5705

14. Nebraska(8-2) .4679

15. Texas(8-2) .4259

16. OregonState(7-2) .4161

17. UCLA (8-2) .2925

18. Southern California(7-3) .2769

19. Louisville(9-1) .2159

20. LouisianaTech (9-1) .1911

21. Michigan(7-3) .1665

22. Rutgers(8-1) .1529

23. TexasTech (7-3) .1416

24. OklahomaState(6-3) .1088

25. Washington(6-4) .0850