FanShot

CFB Compu-Picks Ratings, Week Eleven

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... 7) The following teams are ranked materially higher by the model than the BCS: Stanford, Alabama, Virginia Tech, South Carolina, Arizona, USC, NC St. Putting aside Virginia Tech for now (as noted in previous weeks' notes, this difference is partially due to not counting AA games... though 20th is probably too low for how well they're playing right now), let's look at the other teams. As noted in the above table, Stanford has gone through an absolutely brutal schedule. Moreover, they've had a boatload of dominant wins (35-0, 41-0 68-24, 42-17...). Those two things combine to result in a rating well above everyone outside the top three; that's only two slots above their BCS ranking, but in terms of the compu-picks ratings, there's a pretty substantial gap. Alabama is another team that has gone through an extremely difficult schedule (especially on the road). Moreover, they have also had a number of very dominant wins, and look to be the best of the two-loss team by a mile. There's a very reasonable chance of them beating Auburn in the Iron Bowl (futures lines have had them favored even after they lost at LSU), though if they don't their rating will likely tumble at least a bit. Virginia Tech is an interesting case. Part of this difference is that the model doesn't count AA games (which means that the JMU loss doesn't count against them here), but just as important is the fact that they've gone on a tear through the ACC, virtually wrapping up their division already and only once allowing the other team to even come withing 10 points of them. Compu-picks has them too high, but the BCS has them too low. South Carolina has beaten Alabama, has blown out Florida in the Swamp, and has dominated a number of opponents while facing off against a very tough schedule. Sure, there have been stumbles (the Kentucky and Arkansas games were pretty bad), but overall this is a much more quality resume than most people seem to realize. Yes, they're capable of losing the SEC title game by a couple touchdowns on a bad day... but they're also capable of winning it on a good day. Arizona is the same type of story as most other teams that compu-picks thinks is underrated: very tough schedule, tendency towards blowout wins and close losses (except at Stanford). Despite what the BCS thinks, there simply aren't 21 teams out there better than the Arizona Wildcats. USC isn't eligible to be ranked by the BCS. If they were eligible, they'd be ranked. A bit under the radar, NC St has nonetheless turned in a fairly quality resume. Decent schedule, two of their losses were very close (overtime loss and 1 pt in regulation), and they've scored a number of blowout wins. Another team much better than you'd think just lazily looking at their W-L record.

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