Week 10 Features Top-Notch Schedule
Five BCS Top 25 Matchups In Four Conferences
by Dave Congrove
November 1, 2010
The current top 5 of the BCS Standings contains three teams from non-automatic qualifying BCS conferences, but that number is sure to dwindle to at least two by Saturday night.
Leading the list of five matchups between top 25 teams is No. 3 TCU at No. 5 Utah. The Utes are the last team to defeat the Horned Frogs in a regular season game. Since then, TCU has reeled off 22 regular season victories. Meanwhile, Utah has won 21 straight home games since losing to BYU on November 25, 2006. And the Utes have never lost to TCU at home (3-0). The winner is likely to ultimately claim the Mountain West title which isn't the least bit unusual for either of these teams. TCU has claimed two of the last five, and Utah has won three of the last seven.
Other great battles have No. 6 Alabama at No. 10 LSU; No. 15 Arizona at No. 13 Stanford; No. 18 Arkansas at No. 19 South Carolina; and No. 21 Baylor at No. 17 Oklahoma State.
Alabama and LSU are tied for 2nd in the SEC West, a game behind Auburn, but LSU's lone loss was to Auburn. If the Tide loses this week, they would need Auburn to lose at home to Georgia on November 13 and then defeat the Tigers themselves in Tuscaloosa on November 26. Alabama has won the last two meetings with LSU after dropping 5-in-a-row from 2003-2007. LSU has won 7 of the last 10 meetings.
Arizona and Stanford are tied for 2nd in the PAC-10, a game behind Oregon. Stanford has already fallen to the Ducks and the Wildcats get Oregon at home on November 26. The Wildcats leads the alltime series with the Cardinal 14-11, but Stanford has taken the last 5-of-7.
Arkansas already has losses to Auburn and Alabama, so the Hogs are just playing for the best possible bowl game. South Carolina is trying to stay on track for an SEC East title showdown at Florida next week. The Razorbacks have defeated the Gamecocks in 3 of the last 4 meetings and have an overall in the series of 11-7. Arkansas features the SEC's top passing offense while South Carolina is burdened with the conference's worst pass defense.
Baylor is, perhaps, the biggest FBS surprise of the year as it heads to Stillwater with a 1/2-game lead over Oklahoma State (and Oklahoma) in the Big 12 South. The Bears already have four conference wins and have secured secured a winning season and bowl eligibility. It is the first time Baylor has accomplished any of those feats since 1995 when the Bears went 7-4 overall and 5-2 in league play in the final season of the old Southwest Conference. A win this week would give Baylor its 8th conference win in 3 seasons under Art Briles after winning a total of 8 conference games in the nine years prior to Briles' arrival. Baylor last won a conference title in 1994 when it was co-champs of the Southwest Conference. By the way, Oklahoma State hasn't won a conference title since 1976 when it was co-champs of the Big 8.
Other games that should be placed high on the watch list this week:
Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech (Thursday night) - The Hokies seek their 7th straight win after an 0-2 fizzle to begin the year. Virginia Tech enters the contest with at least a 2-game cushion over every team in the ACC Coastal division.
UCF at Houston - (Friday) This could be a prequel to the CUSA Championship game as each school currently tops its divisional standings. UCF took sole command of first-place in the east with a 49-35 win over East Carolina this past Saturday. Houston has the same conference record (4-1) as SMU, but the Cougars defeated the Mustangs on October 23.
Air Force at Army - The Falcons ended a 7-year losing streak to Navy earlier this year, thus halting the Midshipmen's 15-game winning streak against the other two FBS military academies. A win over the Black Knights would give Air Force the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy which is awarded annually to the winner of the round-robin competition between Air Force, Army and Navy. The Middies have been in possession of the trophy for seven consecutive seasons.
Hawaii at Boise State - Hawaii has its best team since June Jones left for SMU. Greg McMackin has the Warriors on a 6-game winning streak and they head to Boise with a 7-2 record overall and a 5-0 WAC mark. Of course, that doesn't change the fact that the Broncos have never lost at home to a WAC member (37-0).
The college football week kicks off on Tuesday with a Sun Belt confrontation in Jonesboro when Middle Tennessee visits Arkansas State. On Wednesday, USF entertains Rutgers in a Big East clash. Thursday has a MAC game with Buffalo at Ohio, in addition to the Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech contest. And Friday has another MAC showdown with Western Michigan at Central Michigan, in addition to the UCF-Houston game.
13 teams are idle this week, but only one of those schools (Ohio State) is among the top 25 teams in the BCS Standings.
BCS No. 2 Auburn virtually has the week off has it hosts FCS member UT-Chattanooga.
New BCS No. 1 Oregon draws Washington to Eugene, a week after the Huskies were blanked 41-0 at home by Stanford.
ONE BOWL SLOT FILLED, 69 TO GO:
Hawaii became the first team to know its postseason destination. Following their 45-10 win over Idaho on Saturday night, the Warriors accepted an automatic invitation to stay home and host the Hawaii Bowl.
FRESNO STATE AND NEVADA WILL LEAVE WAC A YEAR LATER
The Western Athletic Conference, Fresno State and Nevada have reached an agreement resolving their disputes regarding the departure of Nevada and Fresno State from the WAC. Fresno State and Nevada will remain members of the WAC in all sports through June 30, 2012. They will become members of the Mountain West on July 1, 2012, joining fellow WAC member Boise State.
Fresno State and Nevada will each pay $900,000 to resolve all claims of the WAC regarding their departure. A copy of the executed Settlement Agreement and Release of Claims is attached to this press release.
The list has been trimmed to these five schools, in alphabetical order: Auburn (SEC), Boise State (WAC), and Oregon (PAC-10), along with TCU and Utah from the Mountain West. TCU visits Utah on Saturday.
New Mexico and Akron are the only teams left that are still searching for that elusive first win.
FBS vs. FCS:
Three games this week involve Bowl Subdivisions (FBS) schools playing Championship Subdivision (FCS) teams, and all of them include a team from the SEC. Auburn hosts UT-Chattanooga; Georgia entertains Idaho State and Kentucky welcomes Charles Southern.
FBS schools are 77-7 (.917) this season in such games and 541-49 (.917) since 2003.
Here are the results of every FBS loss to the FCS this season:
9/4: Jacksonville State 49, Mississippi 48 (2 OT's)
9/4: North Dakota State 6, Kansas 3
9/11: Gardner-Webb 38, Akron 37
9/11: Liberty 27, Ball State 23
9/11: South Dakota 41, Minnesota 38
9/11: James Madison 21, Virginia Tech 16
10/2: Cal-Davis 14, San Jose State 13
This year, 85 FBS teams play a total of 90 games against FCS foes. Five schools play two such games - Arizona State, Ball State, San Jose State, Syracuse and Virginia.
Boise State has streaks of 21 overall wins, 32 regular season wins, 29 home wins, 59 regular season home wins, and 43 straight conference home victories. BSU has never lost at home to a fellow WAC member (37-0). The Broncos' last home loss to a conference foe occurred in 1998 when they were a member of the Big West and fell to Idaho in the final regular season game. The Broncos are 6-1 in their last seven matches against BCS conference schools. (Next: vs. Hawaii this Saturday).
Auburn has 10 straight wins overall. (Next: vs. FCS member UT-Chattanooga this Saturday).
Oklahoma has 35 straight home victories. (Next: at Texas A&M this Saturday).
Utah has 21 straight home wins and 9 straight overall. (Next: vs. TCU this Saturday).
TCU has 22 straight regular season wins, 19 straight home wins and 9 straight overall. (Next: at Utah this Saturday).
Washington State has lost 17 straight to FBS schools and 16 straight road games overall. (Next: vs. California this Saturday).
Akron has lost 9 straight overall. (Next: at Ball State this Saturday).
New Mexico has lost 9 straight overall and 14 straight road games. (Next: vs. Wyoming this Saturday).