Pac 10 up for grabs
BIG WIN: UCLA’s Rahim Moore is congratulated after his last-minute interception to secure the Bruins win over Washington. While both teams are under .500 in conference play, the top five teams in the Pac-10 are all ranked in the AP poll.Â
By Jason Lewis
Sentinel Staff Writer
The Pac 10 does not have any team in the running for the BCS National Championship game, but do not be fooled, the Pac 10 is as strong as any conference, and it is as strong as it has been in years.
The reason why there is not a Pac 10 team fighting for the national title game is because the top teams in the conference keep knocking each other off.
USC’s loss at Washington looked like it knocked them out, but they climbed back up the latter, only to be knocked off by Oregon.
After Oregon ran USC out of the building, their claim was that their only loss was the first game of the season against a very good Boise State team, who is still undefeated. People around the country were saying that Oregon was the best team in the nation. Well the word didn’t get to Stanford, who knocked them off.
Now with only three games left there are six bowl eligible Pac 10 teams, and all of them still have a shot at the Pac 10 title and a trip to the Rose Bowl.
There are a lot of “ifs” to determine who will win the title. To make a long story short, who ever wins the rest of their games out of Oregon (5-1), Arizona (4-1), Stanford (5-2), USC (4-2) and Oregon St. (4-2) will more than likely win the title.
That will be a tall order for any of these teams. USC plays Stanford and Arizona. Oregon plays Arizona and Oregon St. Arizona plays Oregon and USC.
With the season winding down there are a number of very meaningful Pac 10 games. In the past, when USC was the clear frontrunner, the only Pac 10 game that really mattered was the USC game because they were in the running for the BCS title.
Because USC has dominated the Pac 10 since 2001 it has made the conference look weaker. But that was not really the case because the conference has always been good.
The difference between the Pac 10 and conferences like the SEC and the Big 12 is that the second and third best teams in the Pac 10 changed every year, while USC sat on top. That made it look like a one team conference.
In the SEC and Big 12 it is the same three or four teams on top every year, but the bottom half of those conferences are as bad as anybody.
The Pac 10 could have a shot at two BCS games because the second place team may get a BCS at large bid. That goes to show how strong this conference is. This year it has been nearly impossible for any team to go undefeated because there are so many good teams and they could be rewarded with multiple New Year’s Day bowl games because of that.
At the moment six teams are bowl eligible, but that number can go up. UCLA finally decided to win a game after a five game losing streak. If they win two out of their last three games they will go to a bowl. Arizona St is in the same situation.