Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Pac-10 among all-time BCS 'bridesmaids'
By ESPN.com staff
Ryan McGee takes a look at the teams that got jobbed by the BCS through the years, and ranks three Pac-10 teams among the top-seven.
From 2000, he has Washington tied with Miami at No. 5. That year, you may recall, Miami coach Butch Davis lobbied hard for a spot in the title game opposite Oklahoma, pointing out that his team had beaten Florida State, which would go on to lose to the Sooners. Davis, however, often struggled to remember that his team had been physically manhandled at Washington -- the closeness of the 34-29 final was largely due to huge Huskies mistakes in the second half, not the play of the Hurricanes. The Huskies, of course, had lost at Oregon, which ended up ranked seventh.
At No. 3, he has Oregon from 2001. That was when the Ducks were ranked No. 2 in the polls, but were eclipsed in the final BCS standings by Nebraska, which had been whipped 62-36 by Colorado in the regular-season finale, for a spot opposite Miami in the national title game. The Ducks went on to whip Colorado in the Fiesta Bowl.
I know a lot of Ducks fans don't want to hear this but, well, that was a really, really good Miami team. Winning the Fiesta Bowl might have been a good thing.
At No. 1, McGee has USC from 2003. The Trojans were ranked No. 1 in both polls but the BCS matched LSU and Oklahoma.
My take is different. USC was so obviously the best team that year -- it was named the AP and FWAA national champion -- that just about everyone in the country outside of the Southeast doesn't even remember who won the LSU-Oklahoma game. As McGee points out, a handful of coaches even rebelled against the anti-democratic rules of the final coaches' poll, which requires coaches to vote the winner of the BCS game No. 1, and tapped the Trojans No. 1.
LSU fans obviously will say they disagree with this. But when you look into their eyes, well, you know they know the truth.