Did BCS Get it Right? Not really

January 5, 2009, 3:27 PM HST · Updated January 5, 3:52 PM
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So, who’s No. 1? The BCS system is supposed to identify the top two teams to battle for that distinction. But some folks – particularly those with West Coast and/or Texas roots – are convinced that the very best college football teams in all of the land will not be on the field for Thursday’s BCS title game at Miami.

Florida and Oklahoma, the teams that did receive the invitations, have excellent resumes, for sure. But, frankly, no better than either Texas or USC – both of which also suffered a single loss during the regular season.

The only blemish on USC’s record was a 27-21 loss at Oregon State on Sept. 25. The Trojans have been totally dominant ever since, capping their season with a 38-24 romp past Penn State in the Rose Bowl.

Quarterback Mark Sanchez led the way by throwing for 413 yards and four touchdowns, as well as running for another, while senior linebacker Kaluka Maiava, a former Baldwin standout, was named the game’s defensive player of the game.

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The knock against USC was that the Pac-10 was believed to be weak this season. But USC’s decisive win against Penn State – the Trojans led 31-7 at halftime — helped the Pac-10 finish with a 5-0 record in the post-season as Oregon, Oregon State and Arizona all beat ranked opponents while Cal also added a victory. So much, I guess, for the lack of quality teams in the Pac-10.

Then, there’s strange case involving Texas, which was left out of the Big 12 title game despite having beaten Oklahoma head-to-head because of an obscure tie-breaker based on BCS rankings. The Longhorns get a chance to show their stuff on today, facing Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.

And Utah of the Mountain West made a strong case for itself by finishing the season as the nation’s only unbeaten major-college team by soundly defeating fourth-ranked Alabama of the powerful SEC.

So, who’s No. 1? I’m not sure. Are you?

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