Commentary

Broncos inch their way closer to No. 3

Originally Published: November 21, 2010
By Mark Schlabach | ESPN.com

Boise State didn't pass TCU in the BCS standings released on Sunday, but it seems to be only a matter of time before the Broncos jump the Horned Frogs for the No. 3 spot.

After blasting Fresno State 51-0 on Friday night, the No. 4 Broncos moved to within .0135 points of No. 3 TCU in the BCS standings, after trailing the Horned Frogs by .0332 points last week.

If Boise State defeats No. 19 Nevada in Reno, Nev., on Friday, it will probably jump the Horned Frogs in next week's BCS standings. TCU has only one regular-season game remaining: a road trip at 1-10 New Mexico on Saturday.

The top two teams in the final BCS standings on Dec. 5 will play in the Jan. 10 BCS National Championship Game in Glendale, Ariz.

Boise State remains No. 3 in the Harris Interactive Poll and USA Today coaches' poll, which make up two-thirds of the BCS formula. The Broncos' average in the six computer polls used in the BCS formula also is improving.

Boise State has a computer average of No. 5, up one spot from last week. The Broncos are now No. 5 or higher in three of the computer polls and no worse than No. 7. Last week, Boise State was No. 12 in Jeff Sagarin's ratings and No. 8 in Peter Wolfe's rankings.

A couple of other notes from the latest BCS standings:

• If the Big Ten championship is ultimately decided by a three-team tiebreaker, Wisconsin seems to be in pretty good shape for a trip to the Rose Bowl. The No. 7 Badgers have a .540 advantage over No. 8 Ohio State and a .1625-point lead over No. 10 Michigan State.

• Close calls aren't hurting No. 5 LSU. The Tigers, who survived a 43-36 victory over struggling Ole Miss on Saturday, are still the highest-rated one-loss team in the BCS standings.

Stanford, which blasted California 48-14 on the road on Saturday, is No. 6 in the BCS standings.

• There are still a couple of interesting computer rankings. The Colley Matrix has Oregon at No. 5, behind Auburn, TCU, LSU and Boise State. Jeff Sagarin has Boise State at No. 7, one spot behind two-loss Arkansas.

Mark Schlabach covers college sports for ESPN.com. He co-authored Bobby Bowden's memoir, "Called To Coach," which was published by Simon & Schuster. The book is available in stores and can be ordered here. You can contact him at schlabachma@yahoo.com.

Mark Schlabach | email

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