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College football: Florida State tightens grip on BCS' No. 2 spot
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Florida State took firm hold of second place in the BCS standings behind top-ranked Alabama and grabbed the inside track to the national championship game.

The Seminoles were second last week, but seemed likely to get passed by Oregon if the Ducks could have remained unbeaten. Stanford, however, handed Oregon its first loss of the season Thursday night and Florida State benefited.

The Seminoles (.9619) are a solid second in the USA Today coaches' poll and Harris poll, and second in the computer rankings that make up the final third of a BCS average.

Ohio State (.8926) is third in the polls but fourth in the computers. The Buckeyes are closer to fourth-place Stanford (.8689) than Florida State.

Unbeaten Baylor (.8618) is fifth, not far behind the Cardinal (.8689).

But Florida State and Alabama appear headed for a BCS championship game matchup if they can avoid being upset.

"Just win," BCS analyst Jerry Palm of CBS.com said about Florida State. "They control their own destiny now. Just win."

Florida State's 51-14 victory against Clemson in the middle of October sent the Seminoles surging past Ohio State in the polls. The Buckeyes haven't had a chance to change the momentum because they haven't played ranked opponents since beating Wisconsin and Northwestern in back-to-back weeks in late September and early October.

"Ohio State never had a game where they could get some juice with the voters, get the voters' attention." Palm said.

Palm said that it's likely if Alabama or Florida State — or both — stumble it would be Ohio State or Baylor moving into the top two spots and not one-loss Stanford.

"The problem is Baylor and Ohio State are ahead of Stanford in the polls and eventually the BCS standings will reflect that," he said.

Unbeaten Fresno State of the Mountain West moved up to No. 14. The Bulldogs need a top-12 finish to secure the so-called BCS buster bid as an automatic qualifier from a non-AQ conference. They also need to be the highest rated non-AQ champion.

Undefeated Northern Illinois of the Mid-American Conference is 15th and trying to be a BCS Buster for the second straight season.

Neither team can afford a loss, but Palm said attrition along should get Fresno State and NIU into final top-12 if they can win out. —

AP Top 25 poll

Record Pts Pv

1. Alabama (56) 9-0 1,472 1

2. Florida St. (3) 9-0 1,418 3

3. Ohio St. 9-0 1,310 4

4. Baylor 8-0 1,303 5

5. Stanford 8-1 1,272 6

6. Oregon 8-1 1,139 2

7. Auburn 9-1 1,109 7

8. Clemson 8-1 1,049 8

9. Missouri 9-1 1,012 9

10. Texas A&M 8-2 909 11

11. South Carolina 7-2 857 13

12. Oklahoma St. 8-1 780 15

13. UCLA 7-2 669 16

14. Michigan St. 8-1 633 18

15. UCF 7-1 596 19

16. Fresno St. 9-0 588 17

17. Wisconsin 7-2 503 21

18. LSU 7-3 470 10

19. Louisville 8-1 467 20

20. N. Illinois 9-0 396 22

21. Arizona St. 7-2 362 23

22. Oklahoma 7-2 285 12

23. Texas 7-2 185 NR

24. Miami 7-2 121 14

25. Georgia 6-3 78 NR

Others receiving votes • Mississippi 68, Minnesota 60, Nebraska 16, Duke 11, Southern Cal 10, Washington 9, Ball St. 7, Virginia Tech 5, BYU 3, Notre Dame 2, Houston 1.

BCS Standings

Avg Pv

1. Alabama .9958 1

2. Florida St. .9619 2

3. Ohio St. .8926 4

4. Stanford .8689 5

5. Baylor .8618 6

6. Oregon .7665 3

7. Auburn .7206 9

8. Clemson .7200 7

9. Missouri .7118 8

10. South Carolina .5584 12

11. Texas A&M .5473 15

12. Oklahoma St. .4671 14

13. UCLA .4548 19

14. Fresno St. .4317 16

15. N. Illinois .3505 18

16. Michigan St. .3417 17

17. UCF .3411 21

18. Oklahoma .2926 10

19. Arizona St. .2833 22

20. Louisville .2806 20

21. LSU .2757 13

22. Wisconsin .2612 24

23. Miami (Fla.) .1471 11

24. Texas .1092 NR

25. Georgia .0857 NR

USA Today Top 25 Poll

Record Pts Pvs

1. Alabama (58) 9-0 1,546 1

2. Florida State (4) 9-0 1,485 3

3. Ohio State 9-0 1,401 4

4. Baylor 8-0 1,376 5

5. Stanford 8-1 1,307 6

6. Clemson 8-1 1,164 7

7. Oregon 8-1 1,162 2

8. Missouri 9-1 1,083 9

9. Auburn 9-1 1,069 10

10. Oklahoma State 8-1 965 11

11. Texas A&M 8-2 898 13

12. South Carolina 7-2 830 15

13. Louisville 8-1 653 16

14. Fresno State 9-0 646 17

15. UCLA 7-2 641 18

16. Michigan State 8-1 620 19

17. Oklahoma 7-2 510 8

18. LSU 7-3 476 12

19. Central Florida 7-1 468 21

20. Wisconsin 7-2 460 22

21. Northern Illinois 9-0 445 20

22. Arizona State 7-2 262 24

23. Miami (Fla.) 7-2 228 14

24. Texas 7-2 176 NR

25. Minnesota 8-2 91 NR

Others receiving votes • Georgia 44, Nebraska 43, Ball State 22, Duke 22, Virginia Tech 15, Louisiana-Lafayette 7, Cincinnati 6, Mississippi 6, Southern California 6, Texas Tech 5, Washington 5, Arizona 4, Notre Dame 2, Buffalo 1

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