All-Florida battle looms
for national title game
NCAA Football Top 25
Ed De La Garza
It would be easy to say the Rose Bowl participants
will be Miami and Florida, but considering all the upsets this year, nothing's
set in stone.
The Hurricanes, No. 1 in the Associated
Press poll and Bowl Championship Series rankings, only have to beat No.
14 Virginia Tech on Saturday to
keep their Jan. 3 date in Pasadena, Calif.
Seeing that they ripped what many considered
to be their toughest competition, No. 19 Washington, 65-7, no one should
doubt they will do the same
when they travel to Blacksburg, Va., to
play the Hokies.
The No. 2 Gators face some stiffer competition:
the No. 5 Tennessee Volunteers. The Vols aren't great, but they're playing
for a shot at the national title
too. The winner of Saturday's game will
then face the winner of the Auburn/Louisiana State game for the Southeast
Conference Championship on Dec.
Should the Gators meet the 'Canes at the
Rose Bowl, it would be the rivals' 51st meeting in 63 years (with the series
tied at 25) and their first meeting
for a national title.
Aside from Florida, No. 3 Texas gained
the most out of Nebraska and Oklahoma's losses. The Longhorns jumped up
three spaces to No. 3 in the BCS
rankings, ahead of Nebraska. It's pretty
simple for the 'Horns. They need to beat No. 9 Colorado at Texas Stadium
on Saturday and they need either
Miami or Florida to lose a game.
The winner of the Texas/ Colorado game
is playing for an automatic BCS-affiliated bowl berth. Whether or not that's
the Rose depends on the 'Horns.
The Huskers aren't completely out of the
hunt, but they need everybody to lose before they can play for the national
championship and a possible
rematch with the Buffaloes.
Miami would have to lose against Virginia
Tech, Florida would have to beat the Vols but lose the SEC Championship
game and Oregon State would
have to beat Oregon.
The following are the complete BCS rankings.
1.) Miami, 2.92
2.) Florida, 6.95
3.) Texas, 8.77
4.) Nebraska, 10.48
5.) Oregon, 10.87
6.) Tennessee, 11.87
7.) Colorado, 18.05
8.) Illinois, 20.45
9.) Oklahoma, 21.68
10.) Stanford, 22.04
11.) Maryland, 24.61
12.) Brigham Young, 25.49
13.) Washington State, 27.25
14.) Washington, 36.32
15.) Georgia, 37.13
Bowl bids galore
There are a few bowl match-ups already
lined up. Even with a loss to Miami looming on the horizon, Virginia Tech's
already accepted an invitation to
play Florida State at the Gator Bowl on
Michigan's trip to the Citrus Bowl on Jan.
1 should take some of the sting off a loss to Ohio State, a loss that killed
the Wolverines' Big Ten title hopes.
Michigan will play a SEC team. The Buckeyes
will play in the Outback Bowl, also against a SEC opponent and also on
New Year's Day.
Washington, fresh off its humiliating loss
to Miami, will play at the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 28 against a Big 12 team
(most likely Colorado).
Louisville will likely face Brigham Young
at the Liberty Bowl on Dec. 31, unless the Cougars get invited to play
in a BCS bowl (ha!).
Miami will face Florida at the Rose Bowl
for — oh, wait ...
No. 15 South Carolina wrapped up its season
Nov. 17 with a 20-15 win over Clemson. With an 8-3 record, the Gamecocks
are just waiting to see which
bowl they'll be invited to. But go Gamecocks.
Oregon State, once dead in the water, could
become bowl eligible with an upset win at No. 4 Oregon. The Ducks are playing
for a lot more than a
late-December bowl game. No one really
expects them to be in the national title hunt; at the very least, they
could be playing for a shot at No. 2 once
the bowl season is over.
But the Beavers have a chance to save their
season. Go Beavers.
The DC Baker's Dozen
Before the Texas fans start screaming bloody
murder and flood the sports editor with calls for my dismissal, let me
state that my poll had the Longhorns
at No. 3. If it wasn't for me those blasted
'Horns wouldn't even be sniffing the top 10. I have no control over the
This is probably the final Top 25 column
of the semester, but you can still send your comments to email@example.com.
Just don't expect it to matter.
1.) Miami, 10-0
2.) Florida, 9-1
3.) Oregon, 9-1
4.) Illinois, 10-1
5.) Tennessee, 9-1
6.) Nebraska, 11-1
7.) Colorado, 9-2
8.) Texas, 10-1
9.) Maryland, 10-1
10.) Oklahoma, 10-2
11.) Brigham Young, 11-0
12.) Washington State, 9-2
13.) Stanford, 8-2