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Vegas: The BCS Got It Right

Everything associated with the BCS is exciting. (By Kevin Ellis - AP Photo via Norman Transcript)

For the first two years of this blog's existence, I posted weekly updates from Las Vegas Sports Consultants, whose oddsmaker rankings of college football teams I considered preferable to those of AP voters, coaches, Harris pod people, blindfolded mice and Kirk Herbstreit.

Both years, after months of wrangling and rankings analysis and overwritten blog posts, Vegas ultimately decided upon a different national championship game than the BCS. In 2006, Vegas would have voted for an Ohio State-Michigan BCS title game, narrowly choosing the Wolverines over Florida. And in 2007, Vegas would have voted for a Southern Cal-Oklahoma BCS title game, instead of LSU-Ohio State, which Vegas ranked third and fourth.

This year, I gave up posting these rankings in favor of endless updates on Clinton Portis's wardrobe, but today seemed a good day for one last poll. LVSC just released their final 2008-09 rankings, and, joy of joy, the Vegas oddsmakers agree with the BCS pod people that Florida and Oklahoma are the best in the land, and should play in the season's final exhibition.

The BCS getting it right? This all caused some introspection and soul-searching for me. Ultimately, I decided that the system is still dumb.

But here you can view how the oddsmakers and the yammerers differ. While the top of both sets of rankings is close enough to glaze the eyes, there are significant differences in the midsection. Vegas says Utah, Cincinnati, Georgia Tech, BYU, Michigan State and Virginia Tech are significantly overrated by the BCS. And Vegas says Missouri, Georgia, Arizona, Mississippi, Cal and West Virginia are significantly underrated. How that affects your life is unclear.

Here are the final Vegas rankings, with BCS rankings in parentheses. And here's to a 2009 season in which Vegas gets back to pelting the BCS decision-makers with spitballs and silly names.

1. Florida (2)
2. Oklahoma (1)
3. Southern Cal (5)
4. Texas (3)
5. Penn State (8)
6. Alabama (4)
7. Texas Tech (7)
8. Ohio State (10)
9. Missouri (21)
10. Georgia (15)
11. Utah (6)
12t. Oklahoma State (13)
12t. Boise State (9)
14. TCU (11)
15. Oregon (17)
16. California (NR)
17. Mississippi (25)
18. Arizona (NR)
19. Pittsburgh (20)
20t. Cincinnati (12)
20t. West Virginia (NR)
22. Iowa (NR)
23. Oregon State (NR)
24. Florida State (NR)
25. Nebraska (NR)

By Dan Steinberg  |  December 9, 2008; 10:36 AM ET
Categories:  College Football  
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Next: Faces of Zorn III: Nausea and Confusion


It would still be more fun and american to do a playoff... I say go with a 16 team playoff, with the champion teams from all 11 conferences (that includes the mid majors) and add 5 wild card teams. Keep the classic bowl games like the Rose Bowl as part of the 1st round with traditional match-ups and conferences being associated with the bigger name historic bowl games. I would try and keep the following in the first round, the rest of them I would just move into new neutral site games in top of the line stadiums. I would also keep Non-championship bowl games like how we have it currently for the hell of it that way we don't lose money.

Round 1
Rose Bowl (Pac 10 champ v Big Ten)
Fiesta Bowl (Big 12 vs At-Large)
Orange Bowl (ACC vs At-Large)
Allstate Sugar Bowl (SEC vs At-Large)
Liberty Bowl (C-USA #1 vs At-Large)
Motor City Bowl (MAC #1 vs At-Large)
Independence Bowl ( At-Large vs At-Large)
Cotton Bowl ( At-Large vs At-Large)

Posted by: alex35332 | December 9, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Dont you think Ball State could beat anyone from 14 down. Shouldnt they get some nod for going 12-0 regular season even though they lost the MAC championship with an ill quarterback?

Posted by: jflo234 | December 9, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

If they lost a championship then their record is not 12-0.

Posted by: alex35332 | December 9, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

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