Race for the BCS

Parker Fox, Staff Writer

  1. Alabama Crimson Tide- The returning national champions will have to navigate yet another tough SEC schedule this season.  The Crimson Tide’s first test was against Penn State, who visited Tuscaloosa on September 11, which the Tide won 24-3.  “The process of repeating as national champion requires more attention.  It can’t be about trying to prove something, because you’ve kind of already done that,” said Coach Nick Saban.  The Tide is 2-0 and has a road test at Duke next week.
  2. Ohio State Buckeyes- The Buckeyes faced their biggest test of the season on September 11 at home against Miami and were able to pull of a victory.  Led by QB Terelle Pryor, Ohio State hopes to return to the national championship for the first time since losing to Florida in the 2007 game.  They will benefit from a cushy Big 10 schedule. 
  3. Boise State Broncos- Boise State had a big win on Labor Day against BCS regular Virginia Tech.  Unfortunately the team’s hopes at a national championship were seriously diminished when Virginia Tech lost the following week against James Madison.   The Broncos went undefeated and crashed the BCS last year with a win over TCU in the Fiesta Bowl.  Boise State will have to prove themselves against BCS conference teams before critics will put them in the national championship game.
  4. TCU Horned Frogs- TCU responded to their loss against Boise State in last season’s Fiesta Bowl with a win over Oregon State in their opener.  They are known for stellar defense and a hard-nosed ground game.  Their schedule is hi-lighted by a trip to Salt Lake City to face their rival, Utah, on November 6.
  5. Oregon Ducks- The Ducks are known for their high-powered offense which has averaged 63 points through their first three games this season.  They will have to overcome tough road games against USC and Oregon State in order to win the Pac 10 and get back to the Rose Bowl.  The Ducks are lead by head coach Chip Kelly.
  6. Nebraska Cornhuskers- The Huskers look to win the Big 12 in their last season before moving on to the Big 10.  It won’t be easy after losing DT Ndamukong Suh, who was a Heisman candidate last season.  The team is known for tough defense and are nicknamed the “black shirts” after the black t-shirts they practice in.
  7. Texas Longhorns- The Longhorns will have to replace QB Colt McCoy, who is the all time passing leader in the storied program’s history.  Sophomore Garrett Gilbert is up to the challenge of replacing McCoy.  Texas has key matchups with Big 12 Conference foes Nebraska and Oklahoma.  They are 3-0 after a win against Big 12 rival Texas Tech.
  8. Oklahoma Sooners- QB Landry Jones has the difficult task of replacing 1st overall draft pick Sam Bradford.  The Sooners hammered FSU on September 11 at home after a rocky start against Utah State.  Coach Bob Stoops is on the hot seat after underachieving for the past three seasons in the Big 12 and on the national scene.
  9. Florida Gators- The Gators will have to recover from losing team leaders Tim Tebow and Brandon Spikes among others.  Coach Urban Meyer returns for his sixth season at Florida and will be looking for his 3rd national championship as a coach.  The team is led by highly touted QB John Brantley who has been less than impressive in the team’s first three games.
  10. Arkansas Razorbacks- Coach Bobby Petrino has led the Razorbacks back to prominence since he left the Falcons to become head coach at Arkansas.  The team is 3-0 and will host number 1 Alabama this weekend.  They are led by standout QB Ryan Mallet.