LSU, Alabama set for historic clash

LSU and Alabama remained Nos. 1 and 2 in the BCS standings on Sunday night, setting up a historic showdown between the two SEC teams in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Nov. 5.

The Tigers blasted Auburn 45-10 on Saturday, and the Crimson Tide overcame a slow start to defeat Tennessee 37-6 on Saturday. Both teams are off this upcoming week, setting up what should be the first regular-season meeting between SEC teams ranked Nos. 1 and 2.

But Oklahoma State, which defeated Missouri 45-24 on Saturday, might have been the biggest winner after this past weekend’s action. After BCS national championship contenders Oklahoma and Wisconsin both lost Saturday night, the Pokes jumped to No. 3 in the BCS standings. In fact, OSU has a sizable advantage (.0938 points) over No. 4 Boise State.

The Badgers lost at Michigan State 37-31 on a Hail Mary pass on the final play of the game. Oklahoma’s 39-game home winning streak ended in a 41-38 loss to Texas Tech. The Sooners fell to No. 9 in the BCS standings; the Badgers fell even further, to No. 15.

The Pokes, who host Baylor on Saturday and No. 11 Kansas State on Nov. 5, remained No. 1 in five of the six computer rankings used in the BCS formula. OSU is ranked No. 3 in the Harris Poll and No. 4 in the USA Today coaches’ poll, which make up two-thirds of the BCS formula.

The top two teams in the final BCS standings on Dec. 4 will play in the Allstate BCS National Championship Game in New Orleans on Jan. 9.

The Pokes are in the best position to potentially face the winner of the LSU-Alabama game, as long as those teams keep winning. The Cowboys also will play Oklahoma in their annual Bedlam game in Stillwater, Okla., on Dec. 3.

A few other observations from the second set of BCS standings:

  • LSU is still ranked No. 3 in four of the six computer rankings. The Tigers are No. 1 in Billingsley and No. 2 in Massey. The Tigers’ lead over the Crimson Tide in the BCS standings grew from .0003 last week to .0075 this week.

  • What more does No. 6 Stanford have to do to impress voters and the computers? After routing then-No. 25 Washington 65-21 on Saturday, the Cardinal remained behind No. 5 Clemson in the BCS standings. The Cardinal should get a bump if they defeat USC this weekend and No. 7 Oregon in November. Stanford is ranked eighth or worse in four of the six computer rankings but is ranked No. 3 in the coaches’ poll and No. 4 in the Harris Poll.

  • The Pac-12’s lack of depth also seems to be hurting No. 7 Oregon. Despite opening the season against No. 1 LSU in Arlington, Texas, the Ducks are No. 12 or worse in five of the six computer rankings.

  • Here’s another head-scratcher regarding the computer ratings: No. 17 Houston is No. 9 in two computer ratings (Anderson & Hester and Colley Matrix) but unranked in two others (Billingsley and Sagarin).

  • No. 4 Boise State was not hurt by its lackluster performance versus Air Force, moving up one spot from No. 5 last week.