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Campus winners and losers

Doug Martin and Boise State are expected to

Doug Martin and Boise State are expected to be ranked No. 1 when the first BCS standings of the season are released. Photo Credit: AP

WINNERS
Boise State: The Broncos (6-0) are fifth in the BCS standings. Why is that a good thing? It’s a good thing because the top four teams – LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State– still have games against each other in the regular season. If Boise State continues to shred its opponents, who knows? They could be still in the mix for a No.2 ranking. There is a chance that Wisconsin, Stanford or Clemson could jump the Broncos, but all of those teams have a conference championship game to deal with assuming they can win their respective regular season titles. Then there is the matter of what is left on their regular season schedules. Wisconsin still has Michigan State, Illinois and Penn State, Stanford still has contests with Washington, USC, Oregon and Notre Dame, while Clemson still has road matches with Georgia Tech and South Carolina. So yes, Boise State was a winner and its fans can have hope.

Kansas State: We didn’t think the Wildcats (6-0) were for real. Saturday’s 41-34 win at Texas Tech convinced us Kansas State is the real deal. The BCS computer is convinced, too. And as a result, the Wildcats debuted at No.11 in the BCS rankings. Of course this could all come to a crashing halt in two weeks when Oklahoma comes to town. After that, the Wildcats face Oklahoma State on the road and then host Texas A&M a week after that. Did we forget to mention there is a date at Texas on November 19? For now, Kansas State is a winner.

LSU: Yes, this is a recurring theme, but the Tigers (7-0) being No.1 in the first BCS poll of the season is huge. With games against No.20 Auburn, No.2 Alabama and No.9 Arkansas still on the schedule, all LSU needs to do is win and it will probably end the season at the top. A loss to either of those teams could be devastating since there are so many undefeated teams (10) left.

Oklahoma State: The Cowboys (6-0) have proved how real they were after dismantling Texas on the road, 38-26, last week. With five winnable games against Missouri, Baylor, Kansas State, Texas Tech and Iowa State, the Cowboys could be 11-0 heading into its December 3 matchup with in-state rival Oklahoma.

Rutgers: Ok, we admit the Scarlet Knights (5-1) aren’t world beaters. But they are on their way to a winning record and a possible Big East title. Sure, there are still games against West Virginia, South Florida and Cincinnati, but Rutgers appears to be focused and on a mission.

LOSERS
Wisconsin: The Badgers were winners until the BCS rankings were released. Wisconsin was ranked sixth in the poll, despite a 48-17 thrashing of then No.8 Nebraska and a 59-7 win over Indiana on Saturday. The Badgers are at Michigan State next weekend and still have Ohio State, Illinois and Penn State on the schedule. Unfortunately, that won’t be enough to put Wisconsin in the title game.

Michigan: There were many who weren’t convinced Michigan (6-1) wasn’t the real deal. Make no mistake about it, Michigan is a good team, but a not national-championship caliber team. Michigan State rendered Denard Robinson all but useless. Robinson completed just 9 of 24 passes for 123 yards, one TD and one interception. He ran for just 42 yards. With Robinson limited, Michigan had nowhere else to go on offense.

Georgia Tech: There’s no way around it. The Yellow Jackets’ 24-21 loss at Virginia was a killer, especially with a three-game stretch against Miami, Clemson and Virginia Tech. No way does Tech (6-1) survive the gauntlet unscathed. A win against Virginia would’ve kept their spirits up, knowing there was a chance to make the ACC title game if they ran the table.

South Carolina: The Gamecocks (6-1) barely survived a 14-12 barnburner against a bad Mississippi State team on Saturday. That wasn’t the story, though. The story was the Gamecocks losing star running back Marcus Lattimore for the season to a knee injury. The good news is the Gamecocks are still atop the SEC East. The bad news is they still have a road game against Arkansas and home games versus Florida and Clemson.
 

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