With Wisconsin's and Oklahoma's unexpected losses over the weekend, the BCS rankings have quickly been jumbled, and the Big 12's Kansas State (7-0) has risen to the eighth spot, still behind a one-loss Oregon team. The Wildcats beat up on cross-state rival Kansas last Saturday, 59-21.
Undefeated teams who still rank higher than Kansas State are LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma State, Boise State, Clemson, and Stanford. #17 Houston is the only undefeated FBS team that ranks lower than Kansas State, but Wildcat Headcoach Bill Snyder's team probably prefers to be in the lower echelon of attention, at least at this point. Kansas State will really raise eyebrows if they can find a way to defeat conference favorite, Oklahoma, this weekend at home. Oklahoma marks the first game in a brutal series of four straight ranked conference match-ups for Kansas State.
Even as the Big 12's Oklahoma may have blown its chance to play for a national title after losing to Texas Tech 41-38, a new opportunity has opened for Oklahoma State. 45-24 winner over Missouri Saturday, the Cowboys have climbed to the #3 spot in the BCS. But to have a shot at the national title, they will need to win all their remaining games, three of which are against ranked competition. Big 12 fans have probably circled December 3, the last week of the regular season, as the day Oklahoma State will host in-state rival Oklahoma.
The surprising BCS weekend may have calmed the storm a little, after ESPN columnist Rick Reilly's speculative "Let the Confusion Begin" published online less than a week ago. In it, he examined the possibilities of teams finishing undefeated seasons without being given the opportunity to play for the BCS championship. Reilly is a long-time critic of the BCS, along with allies such as Dan Wentzel, Josh Peter, and Jeff Passan, the trio that collaborated on the writing of Death to the BCS: The Definitive Case Against the Bowl Championship Series.
Reilly's rage this time is over the possibility of an SEC rematch between Alabama and LSU--he called the BCS "SEC-bent"--even though at least one of the two schools will lose during the regular season. The Crimson Tide host the Tigers on November 5 in a game that SEC fans call "the real national championship."