After several weeks of the status quo, we finally had another big upset in the 2010 BCS standings. On an exciting Friday of top-ranked college football, No. 4 Boise State met their match at the hands of No. 19 Nevada in a game that might go down as the best one of the season. The loss blows up the Broncos BCS bowl chances more than likely, but it also benefits the Stanford Cardinal in their bid for some kind of BCS bowl.
Boise State jumped out to a 17-0 lead and lead 24-7 at the half. However, they could not put Nevada away and the Wolfpack stormed back to tie the game at 24 with 5:14 left in the fourth quarter. The Broncos quickly responded with a short pass from Kellen Moore to Doug Martin that turned into a 79 yard touchdown reception for Martin.
Nevada responded in kind with a 14 play drive that covered 79 yards in four minutes and forty seconds. QB Colin Kaepernick found Rishard Mathews on a little out pattern and evened up the game with 13 seconds left. As if that wasn’t crazy enough, Boise State fired a Hail Mary on their one chance and Titus Young made an amazing diving catch at the Nevada 9. After Boise State called timeout and the play was reviewed, Broncos kicker Kyle Brotzman was lined up for a 26-yard field goal to end things. If it were only that easy. Brotzman pushed the kick wide right and the game went into overtime.
In overtime, Boise State lost the toss and started on offense. They moved down to first and goal at the Nevada 8 but were stopped on four short plays. Brotzman came back out for the 29 yard field goal to give the Broncos a three point lead and he missed that one too, pulling it wide left.
Nevada came on the field and it became a mere formality as Nevada got in line for a 34-yard field goal. After the Brotzman misses I’d imagine Nevada fans were on edge, but kicker Anthony Martinez drilled the game-winner through the middle of the uprights. The fans poured onto the field and it’s safe to say there’s a wild party going on in Reno right now. It’s a shame that Brotzman missed those kicks, but sometimes it’s just not your night.
Although Nevada is a very solid team, the pollsters will likely drop Boise State a decent amount in the upcoming BCS rankings, coming out on Sunday. I’m curious to see how far they drop, but I’d imagine they’ll definitely drop behind the Stanford Cardinal. If that’s the case, and assuming all other parties win tomorrow, Stanford would climb one spot and likely become the No. 5 team in the 2010 BCS rankings.
The ranking itself looks good but doesn’t guarantee them anything at this point. As long as Oregon, Auburn, and TCU remain undefeated, Stanford will likely be locked out of the Rose Bowl. However, they remain alive for an at-large berth in another BCS bowl. Seven BCS bowl bids are either already locked up or will likely be locked up in the coming weeks between the six major conference winners and TCU if the Horned Frogs win out. That leaves three berths between a handful of teams, including Stanford. Boise State losing seemingly knocks one of that handful out of process, which only helps Stanford.
Of course, all of this is moot if the Cardinal don’t handle their business tomorrow afternoon against Oregon State. Stanford can’t control what the voters do so they might as well just focus on the task at hand and get the victory against OSU.