The BCS Title Game: Crunching The Numbers


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – It’s about that time of year again – BCS chaos.

This is the last hoorah for the computer system choosing our national title matchup, and both big state schools are in contention.

The University of Alabama can control their destiny.  Win out, and they’ll get their shot.

But there are plenty of other scenarios floating around out there.

BCS Computer Guru Wes Colley notes, “The computers love Auburn, and it’s because of their strength of schedule obviously.  They’ve played one of the tougher schedules in the country.”

With Auburn’s big win Saturday, they set themselves up for a national title run.  But they’ll also need another prayer answered.

Colley notes, “They will need some help, probably from Ohio State.”

Of course, Auburn has to take care of their business first. They need to beat Alabama, a sizeable task of its own.

But the Tigers can’t decide it all on the field.  They will have to hope for a Florida State or Ohio State loss.

Then, there’s those Baylor Bears.

Colley says the computers will try to push Auburn in, “It’s just going to be hard to keep them out.  Although again, Baylor undefeated and from a major conference, I don’t know.  That is the difficult one to answer.”

But when it comes to the crystal ball, here’s the scenario to trump them all.

Auburn wins out.

Three major undefeated teams remain, Florida State, Ohio State, and Baylor.

Any two of those lose, and suddenly, we’ve got Auburn in the National Championship Game, and their natural opponent – Alabama.

You have to admit, it’d be quite a sendoff for those BCS computers.

And Colley too.

He’s not sure what will come of the computer systems next year, “The other computer guys and I have talked about it a little, but we really don’t know what we’re supposed to do.  I mean, certainly we are not officially part of anything.”

Still there’s demand for this kind of analysis, even with game processing getting turned over to a committee.

Colley adds, “Bill Hancock, the director of the BCS and now the playoff, has said he sort of expects us to keep doing what we’re doing, but that’s sort of very unofficial.  So I don’t know if they’ll look at it.  I don’t know if they’re expecting to be able to look at it.”

We’ve counted on a playoff to end controversy over the national title game, but will a committee’s opinion really be enough for fans?

Colley isn’t sure, “You felt Clemson was better than Texas?  At least with the computers and the way the system works now with the releasing of the rankings leading up to Selection Sunday, people sort of know where they stand  and there is the objective element of the computers.  When you make it all opinion and there’s less transparency, I just don’t know how that’s going to shake out with the first big controversy.”

Even with a committee picking future title games, the numbers guys will stick around.

Colley says, “Certainly I’ll keep doing it, because you know, it’s fun.”

And really, isn’t that what the whole thing comes down to?

You can view the Colley Rankings here.

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