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Could OU's time as the BCS No. 1 be limited?

When the first BCS rankings of the season came out on Sunday, the University of Oklahoma was the No. 1 team. But according to BCS analysts, the Sooners time at No. 1 may be limited because an undefeated SEC team and Oregon could jump OU.
BY JAKE TROTTER, Staff Writer, jtrotter@opubco.com Modified: October 20, 2010 at 8:30 pm •  Published: October 20, 2010

NORMAN — Oklahoma may be No. 1 in the first BCS Standings.

But the Sooners might not actually control their own destiny, caution a couple of BCS analysts.

Jerry Palm, who analyzes the BCS standings at collegebcs.com, said despite OU topping the BCS this week, a couple of other programs have the inside track to the championship game.

"I don't think they control their own destiny," Palm told The Oklahoman in a phone interview. "I don't think they can hold off an undefeated SEC champion. If Oregon goes undefeated, too, I see OU as the odd man out."

The Sooners took first place by grading out No. 1 in the computer ratings.

In four of the six computer polls, OU is No. 1. In the other two, No. 3.

But the Sooners lagged in the human polls. OU ranks No. 3 in the Coaches poll, and No. 4 in the Harris.

Oregon, meanwhile, the BCS' second-ranked team, is No. 1 in both human polls.

And with games against the likes of USC and Arizona ahead, the Ducks figure to significantly improve upon on their No. 8 computer rating — if they keep winning.

Unless the Ducks lose, Palm doesn't see the Sooners passing Oregon in either human poll, even with a victory Saturday at No. 11 Missouri. Palm also believes Oregon will close the gap enough in the computers to move ahead of OU in the BCS.

"Oregon's non-conference was pretty abysmal, but its league schedule gets better," Palm said. "So unless voters change their minds, Oregon is not giving up that top spot."

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ROAD TO THE BCS

Here's a look at the remaining games to watch that could hold major implications in the BCS standings:

Oct. 23: Oklahoma at Missouri

Chance for either to pick up eye-popping victory

Oct. 23: LSU at Auburn

Sooners need to root against winner going forward

Oct 30: Oregon at USC

Probably Ducks' best chance of being knocked off

Oct 30: Michigan State at Iowa

Sparty's magical ride will be put to test in Iowa City

Nov. 6: TCU at Utah

Horned Frogs can score a win that will bolster computer profile

Nov 6: Alabama at LSU

The Crimson Tide can jump back in the race with win in Baton Rouge

Nov. 13: Oklahoma State at Texas

Also win in Austin, and Pokes become serious contender

Nov. 20: Ohio State at Iowa

The winner is still a title game long shot, but you never know

Nov. 26: Boise State at Nevada

The loser in Nevada losing to Hawaii, other than Nevada, was Boise State

Nov. 26: Auburn at Alabama

If Auburn gets past LSU, schedule is manageable until Iron Bowl

Nov. 27: Oklahoma at Oklahoma State

Bedlam as a national semifinal? Hey, it could happen

Dec. 4: Oregon at Oregon State

If Ducks are still undefeated, Sooner fans could be glued to this one

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