For more information on how the bracket works and why it is a 12 team bracket, click here.
Based on this week’s BCS Standings, here is our second mock playoff bracket (ties in conference standings go to team with higher BCS ranking):
No. 9 LSU at No. 8 Cincinnati
No. 12 Pittsburgh (Big East Champion) at No. 5 USC
No. 11 Georgia Tech (ACC Champion) at No. 6 TCU
No. 10 Oregon (Pac-10 Champion) at No. 7 Boise State
Byes: No. 1 Florida (SEC Champion), No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Texas (Big 12 Champion), No. 4 Iowa (Big Ten Champion)
Sorting out the bracket
Like I said last week, the Virginia mess would be figured out quickly. The Cavs lost right away and that is the last we will see of them all season long. Georgia Tech is now the current ACC automatic bid with the best conference record. Meanwhile, Pitt still has a better conference record than Cincinnati, which means the Panthers hold on to the Big East auto-bid and that keeps No. 12 Penn State out of the playoffs for now.
The Nittany Lions are the next team in, while No. 13 Virginia Tech and No. 14 Oklahoma State are lurking right behind.
Proof the playoffs work
I am an emphatic supporter of a 12-team playoff system because of the first round byes. It forces the top teams to play all the way through the last week of the season. Even a loss in a conference championship game could cost you a first round bye. Meanwhile, teams can still be rewarded with a big win. Iowa was comfortably in the playoffs last week and might have stayed in even if it didn’t win on a last-second touchdown, but the win pushed the Hawkeyes into a first-round bye.
Proof the seeding could be done without the BCS
I really don’t have any ideas other than just going with regular season records to determine the seeding, but that becomes a problem when deciding who gets in the playoffs and who doesn’t. It would encourage easy schedules, which is already a problem. Still, the BCS sucks, even in this playoff system. Boise State was No. 4 last week and had a first round bye. They comfortably beat Hawaii and they fall to No. 7? Someone fix this!
No. 8 Cincinnati at No. 1 Florida
No. 7 Boise State at No. 2 Alabama
No. 6 TCU at No. 3 Texas
No. 5 USC at No. 4 Iowa
This really couldn’t be any better. The mid-majors and underdogs get their shot to prove the arguments we keep hearing week-in-and-week-out. Cincy, Boise State and TCU can all prove their BCS worth on the field. Meanwhile, we get our likely Rose Bowl game between USC and Iowa, but it is played in Kinnick Stadium, which gives the Hawkeyes a slight chance to prevent the inevitable — USC blows out another Big Ten team in the post-season.
Semi-finals (to be played at neutral BCS bowl sites on yearly rotation)
No. 5 USC over No. 1 Florida
No. 3 Texas over No. 2 Alabama
No. 3 Texas over No. 5 USC
No Vince Young, Reggie Bush or Matt Leinart, but same result.