Who Will Be The BCS' No. 2?


The race is on: Who's No. 2?

Florida State clinched a spot in the Bowl Championship Series' national title game, but second-place Virginia Tech is locked in a numbers game with fast-closing Nebraska in the latest BCS standings released Monday.

The first-place Seminoles (11-0) guaranteed themselves a trip to the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 4 by ending their regular season with a 30-23 win at Florida on Saturday.

Virginia Tech (10-0) held its spot after a 62-7 rout of Temple, but Nebraska (9-1) made a big jump and closed within .63 points of the Hokies. A week ago, the Huskers were 2.4 points behind.

Even if Virginia Tech beats Boston College (8-2) on Friday to finish with a perfect record, there is still a chance a once-beaten Nebraska could move ahead when the final BCS standings come out Dec. 5. If the Huskers win at Colorado (6-4) on Friday, they play Texas (9-2) in the Big 12 title game on Dec. 4.

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  • The BCS standings, which determine who plays in college football's designated title game, are based on a formula that considers The Associated Press media poll and the USA Today/ESPN coaches' poll, eight computer rankings, strength of schedule and losses.

    Florida State, Virginia Tech and Nebraska are 1-2-3 in both polls.

    The Seminoles have 2.32 points 1 for poll average, 1 for computer rank average, 0.32 for strength of schedule, and zero for losses.

    Virginia Tech has 6.78 points 2 for poll average; 2.14 for computer rank average; 2.64 for strength of schedule, and zero for losses.

    Nebraska has 7.41 points 3 for poll average; 2.57 for computer rank average; 0.84 for strength of schedule, and 1 for losses.

    It won't be easy, but here's how the Huskers could pass the Hokies. First, they would have to move ahead in five or six of the seven computer ratings used by thBCS standings. This week, the Huskers are ahead on two computers.

    Also, the Huskers can make up ground in strength of schedule based on results of their opponents' games. Nebraska could gain if Oklahoma State upsets Oklahoma and Texas beats Texas A&M.

    Virginia Tech can get help from its opponents, too, including I-AA playoff-bound James Madison. The farther James Madison advances, the tougher Tech's strength of schedule becomes.

    Florida State's schedule is ranked eighth of the 114 I-A schools, with Tech's 66th and Nebraska's 21st.

    Tennessee is far back in fourth place with 13.88 points, followed by Florida, Kansas State, Wisconsin, Alabama, Texas and Michigan.

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