MIAMI (CBSMiami) –The much-maligned Bowl Championship Series will get underway in January for the final time, but not before going out with a lineup of games that are both stellar and underwhelming.
The BCS was constructed to give Division I college football something close to a playoff, without creating an actual playoff. But, now that university presidents and conference commissioners have adopted a playoff; the BCS will be no more starting next year.
That still leaves a slate of teams ready to play in a BCS bowl to wrap up the 2013 season. The BCS features the Orange Bowl, Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, and the BCS National Championship Game.
Each bowl has conferences contractually committed to them if the team doesn’t make it to the BCS Championship Game. The Orange Bowl would select the ACC Champion, the Rose Bowl the Big Ten and Pac-12 Champion, the Fiesta Bowl gets the Big XII Champion, and the Sugar Bowl takes the SEC Champion.
The top two teams in the final BCS rankings will be slotted to play for the national championship. As of Monday, the BCS title game would match number one Florida State versus number two Ohio State. That means the Rose Bowl and the Orange Bowl would need to select replacement teams for FSU and Ohio State, the respective conference champions headed to the title game.
Based upon BCS rules, since the Orange Bowl and Rose Bowl lose a team; both bowls will get the first and second selections of at-large teams for replacement teams. But, the Rose and Orange Bowls can’t select a conference champion contractually obligated to another BCS bowl.
But wait, there’s more!
Once the Orange Bowl and Rose Bowl have selected replacement teams, the bowls will then be allowed to fill any at-large spots in the game based on the following order: Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl.
Assuming Florida State plays Ohio State for the national championship, there are still multiple scenarios for the BCS to take shape.
The Orange Bowl would likely fill Florida State’s spot with the Clemson Tigers, though the Alabama Crimson Tide could be on the board to select as well. The Sugar Bowl will have one spot filled with the SEC champion and the Fiesta Bowl would take the Big XII Champion, likely the Oklahoma State Sooners.
The Rose Bowl would take the Pac-12 Champion, either Arizona State or Stanford, and match them up with an at-large team.
Multiple teams will be available for the BCS bowls to choose from including: Alabama, the SEC Championship game loser, Pac-12 Championship game loser, Big Ten Championship game loser, Northern Illinois, and UCF.
UCF qualifies automatically as the AAC champion and Northern Illinois will likely win an at-large bid for the second straight season.
So who will be playing in the games? Here’s CBSMiami.com’s BCS forecast:
- BCS Championship Game: Florida State vs. Ohio State
- Orange Bowl: Alabama (BCS at-large) vs. Clemson (BCS at-large)
- Rose Bowl: Michigan State (BCS at-large) vs. Stanford/Arizona State (Pac-12 Champion)
- Sugar Bowl: Auburn/Missouri (SEC Champion) vs. UCF (BCS at-large)
- Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State/Baylor (Big 12 Champion) vs. Northern Illinois (BCS at-large)