The week nine BCS rankings have been released and the Stanford Cardinal have shuffled up two spots to No. 6. Stanford was No. 8 and gained their two spots courtesy of surprising upsets for No.3 Oklahoma and No. 6 Wisconsin. Oklahoma dropped to No. 9 and Wisconsin fell all the way to No. 15 as the computers do not seem to like them at all, and even more so with this loss.
The BCS rankings combine six computer ratings with the USA Today/Coaches Poll and the Harris Interactive College Football Poll. The Coaches Poll counts for 1/3 the ranking, the Harris Poll counts for 1/3 and the computer ratings combine to count for 1/3, with the top and bottom computer rating tossed out. Stanford has struggled to boost their computer ratings to date due to a weak early schedule. However, the Cardinal have a few big matchups coming up that will greatly benefit their computer rating if they can secure victories. Most notably, Stanford travels to USC next Sunday and hosts Oregon in a few weeks. If they can win out, their computer rating will improve considerably over the final month and a half of the season.
As we move forward, if Stanford can continue winning, they are in a good position to pass both Clemson and Boise State. Clemson has some tough games left, but Stanford has a lot more room to gain in the computer ratings. Boise State has a fairly weak schedule that will only hurt their computer ratings.
To move beyond those two, Stanford will need teams above them to take some losses. LSU and Alabama square off in two weeks, but the loser might still hang close to the top if it is a close game. Stanford should be rooting for a blowout by either team. They also need Oklahoma State to lose because the Cowboys have great computer ratings that will not be dropping anytime soon. There are some opportunities for Cowboys losses as they still have to play Kansas State and Oklahoma, both of whom are in the top ten of the BCS.
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Here are your week nine BCS rankings:
3. Oklahoma State
4. Boise State
8. Kansas State
11. Michigan State
12. Virginia Tech
13. South Carolina
16. Texas A&M
19. Penn State
20. Texas Tech
21. Arizona State
25. West Virginia