Clemson still alive in BCS, but more likely to face LSU or Texas A&M in Atlanta

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Clemson football

The bottom line is that Clemson still has an outside shot at the Sugar Bowl.

After that, the postseason is a muddle beyond the clear-cut either/or at the top.

College football's playoff doesn't begin until 2014; but in fact, this week's Alabama-Georgia SEC championship game will serve as a semifinal, with the winner facing Notre Dame.

The loser will likely fall out of this season's BCS scenario altogether.

BCS rules prevent any conference from claiming more than two of the 10 available BCS bowl spots. That takes a big bite out of the SEC, which has six of the nation's top 10-ranked teams, and precludes BCS bowls for No. 7 LSU, No. 9 Texas A&M and No. 10 South Carolina.

Florida, meanwhile, is sitting pretty to grab the SEC's spot in the Sugar Bowl ahead of the Alabama-Georgia loser.

Clemson sits at No. 14 in the BCS Standings, and ranks 10th among teams still with a shot at BCS spots. The Tigers' main competition for an at-large bid is Oklahoma, which is ranked three positions ahead of Clemson.

For a team from a BCS conference to be eligible for an at-large bid, it must be ranked in the top 14 of the NCS Standings and have won at least nine games.

The rules are different for teams from non-Automatic Qualifying conferences. Three contending teams - No. 17 Kent State, No. 20 Boise State and No. 21 Northern Illinois - can automatically claim one of the at-large spots by finishing in the top 16 of the BCS Standings.

Kent State (.2512 BCS rating), which is tucked in behind Oregon State (.3790) and UCLA (.3340), has the best shot at the top 16, but is still a long shot, mathematically. Should one of the non-AQ conference teams make the top 16, it would likely end up in either the Sugar Bowl or the Orange Bowl.

Clemson stands on solid ground in 14th place (.4570), but is still well behind Oklahoma (.6129), which plays at TCU on Saturday.

Upcoming games can still have a significant effect on the BCS bowl lineup. Kent State plays Northern Illinois for the MAC title this week, while Nebraska plays Wisconsin for the Big Ten's Rose Bowl spot, and UCLA faces Stanford for the Pac-12's berth. The Florida State-Georgia Tech winner will represent the ACC in the Orange Bowl, while the Louisville-Rutgers winner will claim an at-large spot as Big East champion.

Kansas State can claim the Big 12 championship by beating Texas. The Big 12 champion will play in the Fiesta Bowl, almost certainly against Oregon.

At this point, Clemson's most likely bowl destination appears to be the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta, against either LSU or Texas A&M - by far the most attractive match-up available for an ACC team this bowl season (though without the BCS payday).

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Comments » 15

michtiger writes:

Lets see we have shown we are not very good against a good mobile QB. So we are looking at Fl. TA&M and LSU. Wow. We have also seen that our OL can not handle good defense and our QB gets rattled under pressure. Wow. Can we please ask for the music city bowl!!

antpruitt writes:

I wish we were BCS bound, but it is what it is. I never thought I'd be sad about a 10-2 record. :(

Still love my squad, tho'.

-RAP, II
@ihavnolyfe

Greenville2012 writes:

"BCS rules prevent any conference from claiming more than two of the 10 available BCS bowl spots. That takes a big bite out of the SEC, which has six of the nation's top 10-ranked teams, and precludes BCS bowls for No. 7 LSU, No. 9 Texas A&M and No. 10 South Carolina."

How sad is this? We wouldn't want the best teams in the BCS.

lhaselden writes:

in response to sennmanthetigerfan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think we should simply stop scheduling the small instate schools unless we cannot get a FBS opponent! If the ACC improves we can consider going back to schedule Furman and Wofford etc....

Xander5000 writes:

in response to lhaselden:

I think we should simply stop scheduling the small instate schools unless we cannot get a FBS opponent! If the ACC improves we can consider going back to schedule Furman and Wofford etc....

I say play the in-state patsy every other year and play an out of state patsy in the alternating year we dont play an in-state patsy. But every year we need to play a home and home against a Michigan St., an Arizona St., an Iowa, a Northwestern, an Arkansas, or a Washinton just to have some intrigue in our season as well as have our schedule and program better respected.

brookesdad729 writes:

in response to lhaselden:

I think we should simply stop scheduling the small instate schools unless we cannot get a FBS opponent! If the ACC improves we can consider going back to schedule Furman and Wofford etc....

That's dead on accurate! It's time to quit scheduling Ball St, Furman and the likes. Nothing against those schools but that along with the ACC schedule is certainly not gonna help your BCS numbers. I'm glad we're starting with Georgia next year. If you wanna be the best you gotta beat the best and that ain't gonna happen in the ACC. I think we're spending too much time trying to be the big fish in the little pond. It's time to get outta Danny Ford's pond and take the boat to Lake Hartwell where you got a lot more fish. No risk no reward! Look at West Virginia for example. They were usually tops in the Big East and then to the Big 12 and whooooa Nelly! They are getting creamed. I know that doesn't look good now but the competition will make them better. You can say whatever you may about SC. I don't like them but they are holding their own in the SEC now. Problem is too is we want the W's right now. We have no patience as fans. That being said, overall, this team is getting better. We're better than we were last year at this time and that's what we want right? Improvement! Unfortunately winning the ACC Championship game last year has given some of us a false sense of just how good we really are. We've got a long way to go still.

YabbaDaboDooDoo writes:

in response to brookesdad729:

That's dead on accurate! It's time to quit scheduling Ball St, Furman and the likes. Nothing against those schools but that along with the ACC schedule is certainly not gonna help your BCS numbers. I'm glad we're starting with Georgia next year. If you wanna be the best you gotta beat the best and that ain't gonna happen in the ACC. I think we're spending too much time trying to be the big fish in the little pond. It's time to get outta Danny Ford's pond and take the boat to Lake Hartwell where you got a lot more fish. No risk no reward! Look at West Virginia for example. They were usually tops in the Big East and then to the Big 12 and whooooa Nelly! They are getting creamed. I know that doesn't look good now but the competition will make them better. You can say whatever you may about SC. I don't like them but they are holding their own in the SEC now. Problem is too is we want the W's right now. We have no patience as fans. That being said, overall, this team is getting better. We're better than we were last year at this time and that's what we want right? Improvement! Unfortunately winning the ACC Championship game last year has given some of us a false sense of just how good we really are. We've got a long way to go still.

You're going to schedule Citadel & Furman regularly b/c it's a handout to in-state schools. I'm sure there's some political pressure to have them visit Memorial stadium and hand them a check.

What you need to do is figure out how to raise some serious $$$. Then give Dabo his walking papers and hire a real football coach. Then give Bob Bowlsby a call and see what the Big 12 can do to help you with the $50M exit fee. ACC football is a sinking ship. You're not going to matter nationally so long as you're in the ACC and Notre Dame is not a full member. ND is about the only thing that can save the ACC at this point.

TigerNE writes:

It's hard to argue that playing an SEC team in the upper half of their conference can toughen up the Tigers. But what remains to be proven is whether Swinney and company will let it happen. He is too soft and gentle for my tastes and may end up making excuses instead of letting it sink in and make for better play down the road.

A part of me would like to see a front line trying so hard they end up penalized more. When you don't have the size or strength advantage, you have to play right up to the edge. Watching on TV it's hard to see all of the action off the ball, but it would be nice to see more scramble out of receivers, too. If the Tigers loose to any of those SEC teams they might play but come away nearly broken in half and with closer numbers - not just scoring but yardage, completions, etc. - then I'll know this team has turned a corner. If they look whipped and confused before the first half, it's most likely you can point to Swinney and he'll will just make excuses.

Three games in a row against the SEC (UGA next season) would be an awfully good test.

JSBCharleston writes:

Because the ACC is so weak, we already play enough weak teams.

TRUETIGER1 writes:

The 50,000,000.00 buy out is illegal. We need to leave the ACC. That buy out is more of Barker's BS. You cannot charge a team an excessive fee for leaving, MD will prove this and then FSU will leave. WE ARE AT A CROSSROADS WE BETTER CHOOSE THE CORRECT PATH. Maybe we can play Furman in the Sugar Bowl and TDP and Barker can talk about what a good job they've done.

Lynx26 writes:

Leave Dabo alone man, I like him.

We lost because and will continue to lose to them and any other team.... if they're more physical than we are - Point Blank Period.

We're way too finesse on offense and defense. Pretty play will get you victimized when it counts the most. We're not aggressive what so ever.

Too soft. So unless we play a finesse team or a physical group with very little athletes, we'll be fine. Unless its and athletic bunch like Oregon, WVU(last year bc they had defense), then its a different story.

Texas A&M and GA are the same team... Finesse and physical. Not in our best interest. Wit that being said... I love my Tigers and bleed Purple N Orange.

tigerdh writes:

in response to michtiger:

Lets see we have shown we are not very good against a good mobile QB. So we are looking at Fl. TA&M and LSU. Wow. We have also seen that our OL can not handle good defense and our QB gets rattled under pressure. Wow. Can we please ask for the music city bowl!!

Everybody has been complaining about lack of strength schedule so rejoice, looks like our prayer may have been answered. lol

cuGIZ82 writes:

in response to lhaselden:

I think we should simply stop scheduling the small instate schools unless we cannot get a FBS opponent! If the ACC improves we can consider going back to schedule Furman and Wofford etc....

Totally agree...if you want to become better as a program you must consistently face challenging opponents. You will win some and surely lose some but as we know, "no pain, no gain."

ironpmpr35#285397 writes:

in response to brookesdad729:

That's dead on accurate! It's time to quit scheduling Ball St, Furman and the likes. Nothing against those schools but that along with the ACC schedule is certainly not gonna help your BCS numbers. I'm glad we're starting with Georgia next year. If you wanna be the best you gotta beat the best and that ain't gonna happen in the ACC. I think we're spending too much time trying to be the big fish in the little pond. It's time to get outta Danny Ford's pond and take the boat to Lake Hartwell where you got a lot more fish. No risk no reward! Look at West Virginia for example. They were usually tops in the Big East and then to the Big 12 and whooooa Nelly! They are getting creamed. I know that doesn't look good now but the competition will make them better. You can say whatever you may about SC. I don't like them but they are holding their own in the SEC now. Problem is too is we want the W's right now. We have no patience as fans. That being said, overall, this team is getting better. We're better than we were last year at this time and that's what we want right? Improvement! Unfortunately winning the ACC Championship game last year has given some of us a false sense of just how good we really are. We've got a long way to go still.

YES,YES,YES.Totally agree!

tigerdh writes:

in response to cuGIZ82:

Totally agree...if you want to become better as a program you must consistently face challenging opponents. You will win some and surely lose some but as we know, "no pain, no gain."

Probably not going to happen, it helps the in state schools and is almost a certain win on a coaches resume'

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