Cowboys fall, Ducks rise

November, 19, 2011
11/19/11
10:00
AM ET
Anyone notice the Iowa State's uniforms look a lot like USC's if you squint your eyes just so?

No reason I'm making that observation, of course.

Oregon might want to make sure it takes care of business in Autzen Stadium this evening instead of thinking too much about moving up another notch in the race for the national title game.

After Iowa State dispatched No. 2 Oklahoma State on Friday night in double-overtime -- just like everyone saw coming, right? -- the Ducks likely will move up to No. 3 in the BCS standings on Sunday behind LSU and Alabama.

If they beat the Trojans.

And if they win impressively, their bid to become viewed as the "best one-loss" team would be bolstered.

The Cowboys loss sent a simple message that Yogi Berra would admire: It ain't over until it's over. There is NO team you can pencil into the national title game at this point, even top-ranked and impressive LSU.

LSU still has to play Arkansas, which only lost to Alabama, and the SEC title game, which we noted Friday leaves open plenty of complicated possibilities. Alabama has a visit to rival Auburn. Oregon has USC, Oregon State and then the Pac-12 championship game on Dec. 2.

And, really, Oklahoma is still lurking, though beating Oklahoma State won't have as much heft now. Or what about the Cowboys? Recall that the computers love them; they were tied with LSU for No. 1 with the computers last week.

But here's what you can say about Oregon's chances, without question: They are better today than the were just 24 hours ago.

By the way, Jon Wilner looks at what Oklahoma State's loss might mean for Stanford -- and Andrew Luck's Heisman Trophy chances -- here.

Ted Miller | email

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