By REED NELSON
We’ve traveled 11 weeks into this 2012 college football season, and as fast as the Mayan-predicted End of Days approaches, the BCS End of Days tails even more conspicuously.
Since the first BCS Standings were released, only one of the five unbeaten teams (Florida) has dropped a game. That situation in which the unbeaten’s were supposed to take care of themselves? Yeah, that hasn’t happened yet.
Instead, we’re left with an awkward scenario of equal qualification similar to the one that three guys would find themselves in if they all showed up on the same girl’s doorstep (Alabama’s, in this case) all requesting a date, and all of them were carrying flowers and a 64-count heart-shaped box of Ghiradelli’s chocolate.
Unfortunately for the Ducks, the computers find them to be quite average.
But oh, what chaos could have ensued. In an all-too brief four-hour window on Saturday, Notre Dame and Alabama both appeared to be on the brink of disappointment. The Fighting Irish needed a generous pass interference penalty and a shank wide left to fight off a 4-4 Pittsburgh team, and Alabama needed a coincidental confluence of events worthy of a Die Hard script to take down #5 LSU in Death Valley.
Oh the chaos, how beautiful you would have looked. No single non-political entity could possibly spawn as many unrepentant nihilistic yearnings as college football has inspired in the last decade-plus.
But for now, predictability reigns supreme. Kansas State breezed to a 14-point win over Oklahoma State, but, like Oregon, the game was well in hand when the Cowboys scored late.
Oregon parlayed their first signature win of 2012 into a bit of computer sympathy, jumping a spot from No. 4 to No. 3.
Otherwise, the Top Four held and Doomsday remains in the rearview.
But let’s forget the national picture for a moment and get local. Because, even with the USC loss, the Pac-12’s top dogs had a good weekend in the BCS.
Stanford, coming off a win over Washington State — a team, mind you, whose head coach insinuated that zombie-doings could be a part of the problem with his somnambular bunch. I know he didn’t think there was a Walking Dead conspiracy in Spokane, but it still is a very weird thing to say about your own team. I digress — demolished Colorado in a way that only Colorado can be demolished, which is via a 48-0 face-sitting.
In related news, the 48-0 skunking was scheduled the same day as Colorado’s homecoming game. Wait… That was their homecoming game? Isn’t a homecoming game supposed to build morale amongst both students and alumnus alike? Isn’t it supposed to instill a certain amount of school pride? But — most of all — shouldn’t the team planning its homecoming weekend do everything in its power to NOT schedule a team that is much, much better than themselves???? No. Because it’s Colorado, and nothing makes sense about that program, I suppose the answer to all of those leading, snarky, snide and generally patronizing questions is a defiant “No.”
And Stanford and Oregon weren’t the only strong Pac-12 teams of the weekend. Oregon State turned on the after-burners against ASU late Saturday to keep them at No. 11 in the rankings. UCLA spanked a newly-swaggerific Arizona team to climb to No. 18. USC’s defense dressed up as a sieve for Halloween (then left the costume on through Saturday night), and still slipped just two spots in the rankings.
While Oregon might have been craving the demise of either Kansas State, Alabama or Notre Dame, the results could have played out in only two more advantageous ways.
As it stands now, Oregon is set to play three ranked opponents in the final four weeks, a slate that holds up to any other in FBS.
Rising: Oregon (No.4 to No. 3), UCLA (NR to No. 18).
Falling: USC (No. 17 to No. 19).
Wooderson-ing: Oregon State (No. 11), Stanford (No. 14).