Bedlam football: Bowl picture turns upside down
OSU’s stunning loss to Iowa State on Friday night dashed the Cowboys’ dream season. It also could cost the Sooners their dream season, too.
OSU’s loss almost surely knocks the Cowboys from the national championship picture. But it also impedes OU’s hopes of making the Big Bowl. The Sooners were counting on a road victory over a No. 2-ranked, unbeaten foe to make a case for vaulting over any other other once-beaten teams. Now, a Bedlam victory in Stillwater will be huge, but not paramount, for the Sooners.
If the Sooners can win Bedlam, they now won’t get the boost they would have gotten by toppling the Cowboys. It was going to be tough duty, jumping Alabama or Oregon. Now, it’s going to be incredibly difficult.
OSU in the Big Bowl? It would take a series of unlikely events. A team with the Cowboys’ history won’t get much love from the BCS. OSU is likely to fall to seven or eight. Virtually impossible to jump that high in two weeks.
Here are the bowl implications as we await the OU-Baylor game. This is all assuming an OU victory, which can be dicey, as we learned Friday night in Iowa.
* The Bedlam winner is the Big 12 champ and Fiesta Bowl bound, barring some kind of deal-brokering if OU wins. It’s possible the Fiesta and OU could ask to switch teams, so the Sooners wouldn’t make their fourth trip to Glendale, Ariz., in the last six seasons. But if the Fiesta could set up an OU-Nebraska game? The Fiesta would sign quickly.
If OSU wins, the Fiesta will jump all over the Cowboys. Their fan base would be energized and would invade Phoenix for a game against the likes of Stanford or Nebraska or somebody good.
* The Bedlam loser? OU likely still would be BCS bound with a defeat, while OSU could make it. But it won’t be a cinch.
If Houston wins out, the Cougars will get one BCS berth. Stanford is a likely BCS participant, too, if Oregon wins the Pac-12, which it should. The SEC is guaranteed a third BCS team. The Big Ten is always attractive to the BCS, so if one of its teams qualifies in addition to the champ, pencil it in.
So OSU, especially, could need some help. Michigan to beat Nebraska, then lose to Ohio State. Penn State to lose to Ohio State and Wisconsin, though if Penn State would win out (and lose the Big Ten title game), it’s not for sure the Nittanys would accept a bowl bid, in the wake of the Joe Paterno scandal.
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