Is this the year the Seminoles are REALLY back?
In a scene so familiar it's making the sporting part of the nation sick to its stomach, Alabama and LSU are at the top of the college football heap once again (ranked #1 and #2 respectively.) Obviously any team can lose on any given Saturday, but the generally accepted prediction is that the national title game will be Alabama or LSU vs. ____________.
With USC losing to Stanford last weekend, the Trojans are likely out of the national title hunt given their schedule (they'd have to beat Oregon and win the Pac-12 Championship Game...likely against Oregon again.) Outside of the SEC, there is a rapidly dwindling pool of teams that can fill that other spot. From the Pac-12, Oregon (3) will certainly be in the discussion as will Stanford (9) after they shut USC and Matt Barkley down. Cardinal QB Josh Nunes showed that he will certainly be a serviceable replacement to Andrew Luck.
The ACC has two highly ranked undefeateds that meet this weekend: Florida State (4) and Clemson (10). Given the poor quality of the ACC, this is one of FSU's two possible losses (along with an improving Florida at the end of the season.) Despite Clemson being ranked in the Top 10 and being undefeated, you can't really take them too seriously as they'll likely "pull a Clemson" and inexplicably lose some game they should easily win.
The Big 12 has two Top 10 teams in Oklahoma (6) and West Virginia (8). They call Oklahoma "Chokelahoma" for a reason and it'd be a hell of a feat for West Virginia to run the table in their first year in their new conference. If either can run the table, they have the advantage of not having to play a conference championship game. That can be a disadvantage at times, but the computers always seem to have a lot of love for the Big 12 so I imagine that works in their favor this go around. Texas is just outside of the Top 10 at #12, but you can't imagine any team that surrendered 31 points to Ole Miss has a serious chance of accomplishing anything significant.
The Big Ten is pretty much done nationally considering every team in the conference has a loss already save for Ohio State (who is ineligible for postseason play), Minnesota and Northwestern...and you know those two teams aren't winning squat. The Big East doesn't even merit mention, but since they have a seat at the table I'll go ahead and tell you Louisville (20) isn't going to be in Miami unless it's for the Orange Bowl.
That leaves everybody's favorite, Notre Dame, as the only other team in the discussion. The Irish are ranked #11, but have a pretty rough gauntlet to run through and deserve a national championship berth if they make it through unscathed (as much as it sickens me to type that.)
Which non-SEC team is most likely to make it the BCS Championship Game?
Oregon (1197 votes)
Florida State (877 votes)
Oklahoma (74 votes)
West Virginia (274 votes)
Stanford (52 votes)
Clemson (24 votes)
Notre Dame (60 votes)
2558 total votes