The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Sports Columns

November 22, 2013

Mike Lopresti: Time running out to impress computers

The top three teams in the BCS standings — Alabama, Florida State and Ohio State — don't have byes this Saturday, but maybe the next best thing. In other words, home games with Chattanooga, Idaho and Indiana.

Good appetite, guys. But then again, one wrong twitch can be fatal now, since we're slicing logarithms. There is scrambling for position just below them on the ladder, too. As is clear in this week's Tense 10.

1. Baylor at Oklahoma State: This probably settles the Big 12. The pollsters are beginning to truly ooh and ahh at Baylor's fireworks show — the 61.2-point scoring average, the total offense that is churning out 104 more yards a week than anyone else in the nation. But this is the test the voters have been waiting for. Oklahoma State has won 16 of its last 17 at home, and Baylor's last victory in Stillwater was just after Hitler went into Poland, in 1939. Win this one, and the Bears could zoom past Ohio State in the BCS.

2. Arizona State at UCLA: It's been 27 years since both were ranked for this game. An Arizona State victory means the Pac-12 South division title is in the bag for the Sun Devils. If UCLA wins, the Bruins can take the division by beating USC. The last two meetings between UCLA and Arizona State have been decided by a total of three points.

3. Indiana at Ohio State: This is life in the BCS. Ohio State scored 60 points last weekend for its 22nd consecutive victory, and lost ground to Baylor. No wonder Urban Meyer was hot enough to melt a buckeye nut. All his team can do now is exercise a scorched earth policy against Indiana. And since Ohio State has scored 179 points its last three games while the Hoosiers just gave up more than a quarter-mile of rushing to Wisconsin — 554 yards — the voters expect nothing less.

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