"BCS" tag

Why Ohio State More Than Deserves a BCS Title Shot (Yahoo Contributor Network)

COMMENTARY | While the Ohio State Buckeyes prepare for their Saturday matchup vs. the Michigan State Spartans in the Big Ten championship game, the off-field conversation has been about whether the Buckeyes deserve a chance at the BCS national championship. While the popular line of thinking is that the Auburn Tigers, coming off of their win over #1 Alabama, should jump Ohio State in the BCS rankings, there are plenty of statistics that prove otherwise. Let’s break down the three main arguments fans and analysts alike are using to discredit Ohio State and its #2 ranking: Argument 1: Strength of Schedule The all-too-popular argument when it comes to discrediting Ohio State is its strength of schedule. Ohio State’s schedule is ranked 61st toughest in the country, according to sagarin.com. This would appear to diminish the glamour of the Buckeyes’ 12-0 record heading into the Big Ten championship. Why, then, does Florida State’s 66th-ranked schedule never get mentioned? That’s right. Florida State has a weaker schedule than Ohio State does. It is, of course, this line of thinking that catapults Auburn in front of the two aforementioned teams, with Auburn playing the 26th-toughest schedule in the nation. However, if you believe a one-loss SEC team deserves to make a jump, then why wouldn’t Arizona State (10-2), which has the 4th-toughest schedule this season, jump Auburn? The “strength of schedule” argument is more than flawed, but with the way the Buckeyes have been criticized for their weak schedule, one would be led to believe that Florida State had played an SEC-caliber schedule as well. Top 3 based on “strength of schedule:” 1. Auburn Tigers 2. Ohio State Buckeyes 3. Florida State Seminoles Argument 2: Style Points If you’re argument is that the BCS is flawed because it is based on style points, well, you may be right. However, arguing that Ohio State would deserve a shot because of the lack of style points would be a ludicrous argument. The best of the three teams is clearly Florida State, helped, of course, by the weakness of the schedule. The Seminoles have an average margin of victory of 42.6 points per win. Ohio State comes in at 27.9 points, while Auburn comes in way behind with an 18.8-point margin of victory (and, remember, one loss to LSU). The Buckeyes have the biggest win on the season, with a 76-0 drudging of Florida A&M. And it’s worth nothing that the Ohio State Buckeyes haven’t lost a regular season football contest since November 26, 2011. …

After long season, task is simple for Buckeyes

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — After spending the last three months in a pressure cooker, No. 2 Ohio State still can’t hit the release valve.Even in the wake of their biggest win of the season against their archrival, the Buckeyes have to turn right around and play yet another major showdown.They meet No. 10 Michigan State in the Big Ten championship game on Saturday – the latest in a long line of games which have required focusing on the task at hand instead of Big Ten, big bowl and BCS dreams.Yet the Buckeyes say that it’s actually easier to concentrate since they no longer need help getting into one of those cherished top two spots in the BCS rankings.Center Corey Linsley says it’s simple: win and ”it’s all set for us.”Sports & RecreationAmerican Football

College Football Week 15 Predictions: Picking Top 25 Games Against the Spread

The typical robust slate of Top 25 games has more or less been cut in half. The season has progressed far too quickly, and we’ve reached the end of the road. It’s championship week, while a few other conferences will finish out their regular-season games with no title game to speak of. Rivalries will be decided, BCS spots will be won (and lost) and much of a still-hazy picture will become clear by Sunday night. Yes, there are point spreads, just like always. The majority of the Top 25 games feature small numbers; the glaring exception being the four touchdowns handed out in the ACC Championship. There will be bowl games to be picked, of course, but the final official Top 25 picks of the year is upon us. And it’s time to pick winners and go out in style. Picks Against the Spread Entering Week 15: 134-114-2 All lines courtesy: VegasInsider.com Begin Slideshow

Just Because It Looks Like the BCS Will Work out Again Doesn’t Make It Right

Chaos came on schedule for the BCS, just like always. Like the morning train that shows up at precisely 7:24 a.m.—with or without you—or that six-month dentist appointment you can’t run from, the expected unfolded right on time. The debate will rage on (per usual), but the circumstances of the beleaguered system have again sorted themselves out. And despite feeling some nostalgia over its passing, cherishing the small bits and pieces we’d love to take with us, this final stretch of the BCS could be summed up somewhat simply. Good night, and good luck. A pool of worthy undefeated teams incapable of losing a game…lost. At least many of them did. Baylor’s potent offense was iced out on a frigid Stillwater evening, Oregon ran into trouble—or more specifically, trouble ran into (and over) it…twice. And yes, Alabama’s undefeated mark was undone in one remarkable second by its rival. Now, barring complete and total chaos in the final week—which no one should discount given recent happenings—the final BCS National Championship will end with a simplistic whimper. This whimper will be accompanied by ample screaming, whining and Internet angst, but the scenario is suddenly crystal clear. If Florida State and Ohio State are victorious, they will almost certainly meet in the final BCS National Championship. The possibility of Auburn looms—and the networks will play this controversy up plenty for ratings…

For Ohio State-Auburn Debate, How They Do in Title Games Will Be the Difference

After a last-second win for Ohio State against rival Michigan and Auburn beating Alabama with a last-second miracle return in the Iron Bowl, many were curious how the polls would view the Buckeyes and Tigers. On Sunday night it was Ohio State who jumped to the No. 2 spot and has the inside track on a spot in the BCS National Championship Game. Sitting right behind them at No. 3 is Auburn, who is just .027 behind the Buckeyes in the BCS average. With both Ohio State and Auburn playing games against fellow Top 10 BCS opponents this weekend and things sitting so close in the standings, it could be how these games play out that makes all the difference. Yes, that’s right—Ohio State and the words “style points” are being put together again. However, OSU isn’t the only team that has to worry about “style points” in a championship game either. Ohio State leads by enough that all things being equal, it very well could hold on to its lead over the Tigers in the computer rankings and human polls. Yet, to put a final nail in a BCS National Championship bid, the Buckeyes would do well to win and win big. The Buckeyes will face the toughest opponent it has seen since a home date with Wisconsin on Sept. 28 in No. 10 Michigan State on Saturday in the Big Ten Championship Game. Ohio State won that game against Wisconsin by six points at home, holding off a late charge by the Badgers. A similar result against Michigan State on a…

Ohio State Football: Buckeyes Need to Focus on Spartans, Not BCS Rankings

When Auburn returned Alabama’s missed field goal for a touchdown to secure one of the most bizarre victories in Iron Bowl history, a debate instantly sparked about whether a one-loss SEC champion is more deserving of a title shot than an unbeaten Ohio State team. The Buckeyes, who despite that debate elevated to the No. 2 spot ahead of Auburn in this week’s BCS rankings, would be smart to tune out the noise and focus on their Big Ten Championship tilt with No. 10 Michigan State. Ohio State, of course, is coming off a closer-than-expected victory over a Michigan team that finished the season with five losses. The Buckeyes gave up 603 total yards to a struggling Wolverines offense. Devin Gardner gashed Ohio State’s defense through the air, completing 71 percent of his passes for 451 yards to complement five total touchdowns. Michigan was just one play away from handing Ohio State its first loss in two years. Trailing by one after a touchdown reception from Devin Funchess, Brady Hoke opted to go for two, and the win, instead of tying the game and forcing overtime. The Buckeyes held when Tyvis Powell jumped the route and picked off Gardner’s pass, preserving the win and Ohio State’s unbeaten season. The Buckeyes have a much taller task this week in taking down the Spartans. Michigan State boasts the nation’s top defense, allowing just 237 yards per game. The Spartans are especially stout against the run, surrendering an average of 64.8 rushing yards per game, which…

Another week, another must-win game for Buckeyes

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — There was a time when Ohio State players could look forward to a break after trading bruises with archrival Michigan.Not anymore. At least, not this year.No sooner did the second-ranked Buckeyes escape Michigan Stadium with a 42-41 victory – thanks to Tyvis Powell’s last-minute interception on a two-point conversion pass at the goal line – than they were already immersing themselves in preparation for yet another make-or-break game.The Big Ten championship game against No. 10 Michigan State – the only top-15 team Ohio State has played in a school-record 24-game winning streak under coach Urban Meyer – looms on Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.The Buckeyes are beaten up, physically and mentally. But this is no time to reflect on what’s been accomplished so far.”I think they are sore,” Meyer said on Monday. ”I have got to be smart this week in what we do. As far as energy and focus – and throw in the fact that it’s finals week at Ohio State – we have to be really efficient with these guys.”Now No. 2 in the BCS standings, the Buckeyes need to win to hang on to their spot in the BCS national championship game.Since 1943, Ohio State has not had an opponent between Michigan and a bowl game. But with the Big Ten going to a two-division format three years ago, it was only a matter of time until the Buckeyes were busy again the week after their annual grudge match with Michigan.A year ago, the Buckeyes also went 12-0, but were not permitted to play in the Big Ten title game or a bowl because of NCAA sanctions from violations that occurred on former coach Jim Tressel’s watch.It’s not as if they don’t have some things to work on this week.The defense was overwhelmed by Michigan’s previously erratic offense. The Wolverines’ Devin Gardner completed 32 of 45 passes for 451 yards and four touchdowns – including three in the fourth quarter as Michigan pulled even after trailing by 14 points.The Buckeyes surrendered 603 yards.Ohio State defensive coordinator Luke Fickell was displeased with the stats but couldn’t have been happier that the Buckeyes’ offense did enough to bail out his side of the ball.”Did we win? Did we win?” he repeated when asked about the failures of his defense. ”Because I’ve been up there quite a few times in my 18-year career (as a player and coach) here and have not always been able to come away with the win. Momentum and things happen and we didn’t play great on the defensive side of the ball. So there’s a lot of things to correct.”Ohio State’s running game doesn’t have a lot of flaws right now. Carlos Hyde, the first running back in Meyer’s 12 years as a head coach to top 1,000 yards, rumbled for 226 yards on 27 carries and scored once at the Big House, while quarterback Braxton Miller rushed for 133 yards and three touchdowns.But the Buckeyes will be up against a Michigan State defense that is ranked No. 1 among all major colleges against the run (allowing just 64.8 yards per game), in passing efficiency defense and also in total defense (giving up just 238 yards a game).Offensive coordinator Tom Herman said the Spartans do not have an apparent weakness.”I don’t know if there is a first-team All American on that defense,” he said. ”But they have 11 guys that know exactly what they are doing and they do it really well and they tackle well and they are always in the right spot. They are about as sound a defense as you’ll see.”As has been the case throughout the season, Meyer won’t discuss BCS rankings or the potential of playing in the national championship game.The Buckeyes, by virtue of two-time defending national champion Alabama’s quirky loss to Auburn in the Iron Bowl on Saturday night, moved up a spot to No.2 in the BCS rankings.If they beat Michigan State they will most likely play in the title game on Jan. 6 in Pasadena, Calif.Meyer declined to get involved in the verbal skirmishing over whether a Southeastern Conference champion with one loss deserves a spot in the title game, and also refused to defend his own team’s claim. Yet.”We play a game,” he said of the Big Ten championship. ”And for someone to ask about something (that might happen) after this game, I mean, that’s cheating my football team. There will be no conversation about what happens after this game until after the game.”—Follow Rusty Miller on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/RustyMillerAPSports & RecreationAmerican FootballUrban MeyerBCS national championship gameMichigan

For Ohio State-Auburn Debate, How They Do in Title Games Will Be the Difference

After a last-second win for Ohio State against rival Michigan and Auburn beating Alabama with a last-second miracle return in the Iron Bowl, many were curious how the polls would view the Buckeyes and Tigers. On Sunday night it was Ohio State who jumped to the No. 2 spot and has the inside track on a spot in the BCS National Championship Game. Sitting right behind them at No. 3 is Auburn, who is just .027 behind the Buckeyes in the BCS average. With both Ohio State and Auburn playing games against fellow Top 10 BCS opponents this weekend and things sitting so close in the standings, it could be how these games play out that makes all the difference. Yes, that’s right—Ohio State and the words “style points” are being put together again. However, OSU isn’t the only team that has to worry about “style points” in a championship game either. Ohio State leads by enough that all things being equal, it very well could hold on to its lead over the Tigers in the computer rankings and human polls. Yet, to put a final nail in a BCS National Championship bid, the Buckeyes would do well to win and win big. The Buckeyes will face the toughest opponent it has seen since a home date with Wisconsin on Sept. 28 in No. 10 Michigan State on Saturday in the Big Ten Championship Game. Ohio State won that game against Wisconsin by six points at home, holding off a late charge by the Badgers. A similar result against Michigan State on a…

Ohio State Football: Buckeyes Need to Focus on Spartans, Not BCS Rankings

When Auburn returned Alabama’s missed field goal for a touchdown to secure one of the most bizarre victories in Iron Bowl history, a debate instantly sparked about whether a one-loss SEC champion is more deserving of a title shot than an unbeaten Ohio State team. The Buckeyes, who despite that debate elevated to the No. 2 spot ahead of Auburn in this week’s BCS rankings, would be smart to tune out the noise and focus on their Big Ten Championship tilt with No. 10 Michigan State. Ohio State, of course, is coming off a closer-than-expected victory over a Michigan team that finished the season with five losses. The Buckeyes gave up 603 total yards to a struggling Wolverines offense. Devin Gardner gashed Ohio State’s defense through the air, completing 71 percent of his passes for 451 yards to complement five total touchdowns. Michigan was just one play away from handing Ohio State its first loss in two years. Trailing by one after a touchdown reception from Devin Funchess, Brady Hoke opted to go for two, and the win, instead of tying the game and forcing overtime. The Buckeyes held when Tyvis Powell jumped the route and picked off Gardner’s pass, preserving the win and Ohio State’s unbeaten season. The Buckeyes have a much taller task this week in taking down the Spartans. Michigan State boasts the nation’s top defense, allowing just 237 yards per game. The Spartans are especially stout against the run, surrendering an average of 64.8 rushing yards per game, which…

BCS: OSU in position for BCS title game

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The faith never wavered within the locker room that the help Ohio State needed would eventually arrive, and the Buckeyes certainly celebrated when it did. But after spending about 15 minutes partying on the team buses on Saturday, coach Urban Meyer dramatically cut down on the amount of time spent addressing things outside of his control one day later.

The team met on Sunday afternoon, just five hours before it would officially move up to No. 2 in the BCS standings and into position to play new No. 1 Florida State for the national title. But Meyer had barely any plans to talk about that possibility, instead focusing all of his energy on surging Michigan State, which climbed up to No. 10 on Sunday evening to set the table for a marquee showdown in the Big Ten title game this weekend in Indianapolis.

“We’ll spend about six or eight seconds on that,” Meyer said. “There will be no conversation about it, no social networking about it. Our focus is on this game and that’s it. “It would be a disservice to our players if I went and worried about it, and I’m certainly not.”

The Buckeyes may not be worrying about the polls or computer formulas, but that won’t stop the speculation about their case for playing for the national title despite finishing off a perfect regular season with a thrilling 42-41 win over rival Michigan.

Still on the highway on the way back home, the Buckeyes watched on televisions in their caravan as Auburn pulled off a miracle to upset previously top-ranked Alabama, rocking the buses when the score went final to put them in position to play for the crystal football. But even before they arrived back at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, the comparisons of Ohio State’s resume to Auburn’s had already started.

There still remains a .027-point margin between the teams heading into the respective conference title games on Saturday, with Ohio State holding an edge over Auburn in both human polls and in the average computer rankings. On top of that, a one-loss team has never jumped an undefeated squad from a major conference in the history of the BCS, and another win would figure to be enough to keep the Buckeyes in the title game.

Michigan State isn’t in the mix to play for a national crown, but it solidified its candidacy as an at-large BCS selection with another dominant defensive performance in a 14-3 win over Minnesota. Of course, it can also punch a ticket to the Rose Bowl by knocking off the Buckeyes, though the Big Ten would still be in good shape to earn two spots in the BCS lineup despite Wisconsin losing to Penn State and falling to No. 21.

But before either Michigan State or Ohio State can think about where it’s headed for bowl season, there’s still some pretty significant business to take care of in Indianapolis.

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