Ohio State, Nebraska and South Carolina Fall
by Dave Congrove
October 17, 2010
Boise State is No. 1 in the Congrove Computer Rankings (CCR Top 120) and could top the BCS Standings when the first edition for 2010 is released on Sunday.
Losses by teams which were ranked 3rd (Ohio State) and 6th (Nebraska) by the computer have certainly helped thin out the herd for the Broncos. Previously, highly-ranked teams such Alabama, Texas and Florida have also gone down to defeat. In fact, it's reasonably safe to say that several preseason favorites have removed themselves from the national championship equation altogether.
The computer, in fact, currently has three teams from non-BCS automatic qualifier conferences in its top five and Boise State and TCU are ranked No. 1 and No. 2. The other is Utah, which moved up from 7th to 5th. Oregon and Oklahoma hold down the No. 3 and No. 4 spots, respectively.
Alabama inched back up to 6th after falling to 8th last week when it lost at South Carolina. The Gamecocks, in turn, lost to Kentucky on Saturday and fell from 20th to 28th.
Ohio State only slipped from 3rd to 7th after falling 31-18 at Wisconsin this week. The Badgers improved from 23rd to 17th.
Auburn, Oklahoma State and LSU round out the top 10.
Boise State's path to the BCS title game became a little more foggy. Though the Broncos manhandled hapless San Jose State 48-0 on the road, Hawaii scored a 27-21 home upset of previously undefeated Nevada 27-21. The Wolf Pack dropped from No. 10 to No. 20 in the computer rankings and lost value to the voters as a meaningful Bronco opponent.
TCU clocked BYU 31-3, but that win does nothing to bolster the Horned Frogs' season resume as the disappointing Cougars fell to 2-5.
Oregon was idle over the weekend as Oklahoma was bashing visiting Iowa State 52-0, and Utah was rolling 30-6 at Wyoming.
Alabama regrouped with a 23-10 home win over Ole Miss, and Auburn won a 65-43 shootout at home over Arkansas.
Oklahoma State doubled-up Texas A&M 34-17 at College Station, and LSU plodded to a 32-10 home win over FCS member McNeese State.
Missouri jumped ahead of Nebraska after the Tigers won 30-9 at Texas A&M while the 'Huskers fell 20-13 at home to Texas. Mizzou climbed from 14th to 11th and Nebraska tumbled from 6th to 12th.
Iowa stayed at No. 13 after its 38-28 win at Michigan as idle Stanford advanced from 16th to 14th.
Michigan State got a bump from No. 18 to No. 15 after it improved to 7-0 with a 26-6 home win over Illinois.
Texas' win at Nebraska was worthy of a 3-spot climb from 19th to 16th as the 2-loss Longhorns try to climb back into the top ten.
Florida State's unimpressive and turnover-plagued 24-19 home win over Boston College forced the Seminoles down a notch in the rankings from 17th to 18th.
West Virginia rose from 22nd to 19th, even though it opened its Big East slate with an uninspired 20-6 home over struggling USF.
Virginia Tech made it back into the top 25 for the first time since opening the year with losses to Boise State and FCS member James Madison. The Hokies have since reeled off 5 straight wins, including Saturday's 52-21 drubbing of Wake Forest in which they scored 49 points in the first half and took their foot off the gas for the rest of the game.
Fellow ACC members North Carolina and Miami (Fla.) also made it back into the top 25, giving the conference 4 ranked teams. The Tar Heels are 23rd after smacking Virginia 44-10 in Charlottesville and the Hurricanes are 25th after a 28-13 win at Duke. Another ACC team, Georgia Tech, sits at No. 26.
Arizona moved up to 22nd from 24th after a 24-7 win at Washington State, and Arkansas fell backward to the No. 24 slot after the loss at Auburn in which QB Ryan Mallet was knocked out of the game with a concussion.
Florida lost 10-7 at home to Mississippi State, giving the Gators their first 3-game losing streak since the end of the 1999 season. It was also Florida's first home loss to the Bulldogs since 1965. On September 26, the Gators were 4-0 and ranked 6th by the computer. Now they are 4-3 and ranked 30th.
At the other end of the rankings spectrum, then-No. 119 Eastern Michigan saw its 18-game losing streak come to an end with a 41-38 overtime win at Ball State. The Eagles fell behind 21-0 in the second quarter, but rallied to a 35-28 lad in the 4th. The Cardinals tied the game with under a minute left to force overtime. In the extra period, Ball State had to settle for a field goal and EMU won on Alex Gillett's 3rd TD pass of the ball game.
Western Kentucky almost ended its nation's worst losing streak at 25 games. UNfortunately, the Hilltoppers squandered a 24-7 4th quarter lead by allowing 28 unanswered points and ultimately lost 35-30 to UL-Monroe.
Three teams lost for the first time over the weekend, leaving 10 schools with unblemished records. In alphabetical order, they are Auburn, Boise State, LSU, Michigan State, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, TCU and Utah. 3 of those teams are from the Big 12 and 2 each are from the SEC and Mountain West. The Big Ten, PAC-10 and WAC each have one.
4 teams entered the weekend winless, but Eastern Michigan's 41-38 overtime win at Ball State shortened the list to 3. Still searching for their initial victory are Western Kentucky, New Mexico and Akron.
FBS vs. FCS:
Only one game this week involved a Bowl Subdivisions (FBS) school playing a Championship Subdivision (FCS) team and that resulted in a 32-10 win for LSU over McNeese State. FBS schools are 75-7 (.915) this season in such games and 539-49 (.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 20 overall wins, 31 regular season wins, 28 home wins, 58 regular season home wins, and 42 straight conference home victories. BSU has never lost at home to a fellow WAC member (36-0). 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. The Broncos won 48-0 at San Jose State.
Ohio State's 12-game winning streak was halted in its 31-18 loss at Wisconsin.
Oklahoma has 34 straight home victories. The Sooners annihilated Iowa State 52-0 in Norman.
Utah has 20 straight home wins. The Utes won 30-6 at Wyoming.
Western Kentucky has lost 26 straight overall and 31 straight to FBS teams. The Hilltoppers lost 35-30 vs. Louisiana-Monroe.
Eastern Michigan's losing streak came to an end at 18 games. The Eagles won 41-38 in OT at Ball State.
Washington State has lost 15 straight to FBS schools. The Cougars fell 24-7 vs. Arizona.